Today's Top Ten

March 29, 2023

NS releases 2023-24 Budget

Nova Scotia recently released its 2023-24 Budget. Universities will receive a $3.8M increase (1%) to their operating grants in keeping with the current Memorandum of Understanding. Nova Scotia Community College will receive $97.2M for its Sydney Waterfront Campus and three student housing projects. The budget primarily focuses on healthcare, and several investments in healthcare have a direct impact on the postsecondary education sector, including new nursing training seats at Cape Breton University, Dalhousie University, St. Francis Xavier University, and Nova Scotia Community College; medical school seats for Dal; and free tuition for those training to become continuing care assistants. NS | CBC | Saltwire (NS)

Canadian universities host Unissued Diplomas exhibit to honour memory of Ukrainian students

Over the last month, universities across Canada have hosted the Unissued Diplomas art exhibit, an international initiative that commemorates Ukrainian students killed during the current war in Ukraine. The exhibit was organised by Ukrainian students across Canada to honour their fallen peers and shine a light on the futures that have been lost due to the ongoing crisis. Participating Canadian universities include Carleton University, McGill University, Saint Mary’s University, the University of Alberta, the University of Saskatchewan, and the University of Toronto. The Signal (SMU) | Carleton | U of T | Global News (USask) | Unissued Diplomas (Intl)

FNEE, PFF establish five-year partnership to support program development, sustainability

First Nations Executive Education (FNEE) and the Pathy Family Foundation (PFF) have partnered to support FNEE’s program development and long-term sustainability. PFF has committed to supporting FNEE through the HEC Montréal Foundation over the next five years. "With this donation, the Pathy Family Foundation has become one of FNEE's major partners," said Michel Patry, President of the HEC Montréal Foundation. "By supporting the development of innovative programs, they are making it possible for FNEE to increase its impact across First Nations communities and, in turn, across society as a whole." Newswire (QC)

UAlberta, UCalgary students protest tuition hikes

Students from the University of Alberta and University of Calgary recently held a series of rallies against proposed tuition increases. The Edmonton Journal reports that UAlberta’s board of governors recently approved a tuition increase by 5.5% for domestic students and 6.5% for international students for 2023-24. Student representatives from the respective schools warned that provincial budget cuts to postsecondary education and consequent tuition hikes will drive students into further financial precarity. “Students are angry and at a breaking point,” said UCalgary Students’ Union Vice-President External Mateusz Salmassi. “We’re tired of receiving one of the largest cuts to post-secondary funding in history while also paying the biggest tuition hikes while also receiving a tax hike.” Edmonton Journal (UAlberta) | CBC (UAlberta) | The Gauntlet (UCalgary) | City News (UCalgary) (AB)

YorkU appointed academic lead of UN’s new Water Academy

At the recent United Nations (UN) 2023 Water Conference, York University was named the academic lead of the UN’s newly established Water Academy. The Water Academy is a multisector initiative to develop an innovative water educational resource. YorkU will work with the UN Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) alongside other public and private sector partners to create an immersive learning program that fosters skills and knowledge in water management and encourages a water culture based on ethics and responsibility. “By working together with UNITAR, York University demonstrates the important role of higher education in addressing societal issues and advancing the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through scholarship and activism,” said YorkU President Rhonda Lenton. YorkU | UNITAR (ON)

Brand authenticity for higher ed: Study

A recent study published in the Journal of Marketing for Higher Education explores the role of brand authenticity for higher education. Brand authenticity has been an important quality for consumers in other industries, the authors explain, but it has not been thoroughly explored in postsecondary education. Drawing on past research and a field study of business school students, the article examines whether and how perceived brand authenticity could impact willingness-to-pay and positive word-of-mouth. The researchers conclude that perceptions of authenticity are a strong predictor of brand attitude, emotional brand attachment, and positive word of mouth. JMHE | JMHE (PDF) (Study)

SPU, Boréal sign ten-year lease agreement to support French-language education

Saint Paul University and Collège Boréal have signed a new ten-year lease agreement that will create more French-language education opportunities in Ontario. The agreement builds on the existing relationship between the two partners, which has included transfer arrangements and Boréal’s use of facilities on SPU’s campus. Classrooms, labs, and office space in an SPU building will be renovated to accommodate Boréal students and programs as soon as the 2023-24 academic year. “Our College’s move to its new premises in the heart of Saint Paul University represents a unique opportunity to strengthen a very fruitful collaboration with one of the pillars of Canada's university heritage,” said Boréal President Daniel Giroux. SPU (ON)

Five ways to welcome uncertainty in the classroom: Editorial

Instructors should welcome mistakes and ambiguity into the learning environment, write Jeremy T Murphy and Meira Levinson in an article for Inside Higher Ed. Though embracing uncertainty can be intimidating for instructors and students alike, the authors argue that the practice can “foster curiosity, promote metacognition, and spark active learning” in the postsecondary classroom. The authors offer five strategies for instructors looking to embrace uncertainty more in their teaching practice, which include welcoming wrong answers, temporarily withholding the correct answers to encourage discussion, and modelling not knowing the solution to every problem. The writers conclude that these practices could teach students that uncertainty is an unavoidable and necessary part of the learning process. Chronicle of Higher Ed (Acct. Req.) (Editorial)

Cégep à Joliette celebrates renovated greenhouse complex

Cégep à Joliette has celebrated the $1.9M renovation of its greenhouse complex. The renovations included the creation of new classrooms, a vegetable washing room, storage, and laboratories, and three cultivation rooms. Large gardens have also been developed behind the complex, which will be used by horticultural technician students. Cégep directeur Sylvain Riendeau stated that the institution is proud to be able to offer a quality learning space that is adapted to the program and reflects the realities of the labour market graduates will enter into. Cégep à Joliette (QC)

Sask Polytech signs MOU with Saigontourist Hospitality College in Vietnam

Saskatchewan Polytechnic has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Saigontourist Hospitality College in Vietnam. As part of the MOU, the two institutions agreed to share expertise with one another. They will also work collaboratively on key projects such as the development of continuing education courses, customized Surge Micro-credentials, joint programming opportunities and an initiative to encourage student and staff international exchange. Sask Polytech states that the partnership takes place in the context of the institution’s broader international strategy and priorities. SaskPolytech (SK)