Top Ten

November 17, 2006

Manitoba Offers 60% Tuition Rebate to Students Who Stay

In Wednesday's throne speech, the Manitoba NDP government promised a 60% tax rebate on tuition fees to university and college students who stay and work in the province after they graduate. The rebate will take effect in 2007, and allow the average student to receive the rebate over six years, while working to establish a career in the province and paying off student debt. New Brunswick already offers a similar 50% rebate to a maximum of $10,000. CBC  

uOttawa Stem Cell Research Centre Opens

On Wednesday, the Sprott Centre for Stem Cell Research officially opened at the Ottawa Health Research Institute. Vizma and Eric Sprott donated $7 million toward the construction of the 30,000 square foot facility, in the hope "that scientists at this Centre could one day discover a cure for some of the many diseases that are afflicting people around the world." The $24 million centre will eventually house more than 120 researchers and staff. Media release 

uSask Receives Louis Riel Manuscript

Yesterday, prominent media coverage was given to a brief English poem, written in Louis Riel's own hand, apparently to his jailer in the weeks prior to his hanging in 1885. University of Saskatchewan library officials were "blown away" when a woman in her late 80s approached them last year, indicating that she wished to leave it to the university in her will. Globe & Mail 

McMaster Acquires Two Millionth Book

McMaster University recently acquired its two millionth volume, a rare first edition of Sir Isaac Newton's Opticks. It has become the heart of an interdisciplinary web project, "The Mind of Isaac Newton," examining the religious and theological aspects of Newton's work, as well as Physics, Astronomy, Mathematics and Statistics. It will officially launch next Monday. McMaster news 

Ontario Should Allow Part-Time College Staff to Unionize

Yesterday, OPSEU welcomed a ruling from Geneva-based ILO that Ontario should not exclude 16,000 academic and part-time college employees from collective bargaining. OPSEU called upon Ontario premier Dalton McGuinty "to immediately right this historic wrong." OPSEU media release 

Green Party to Host PSE Input Session at UWO on Monday

On Monday, the Green Party of Canada will host an open session for interested citizens on the accessibility and affordability of PSE, at the University of Western Ontario. UWO is in the federal riding where Green Party leader Elizabeth May is seeking the party's first Commons seat in a federal by-election. The forum is the second in a cross-country series seeking innovative policy ideas across a range of issues. The day will include presentations by PSE experts including Dr Karin Cope, Trevor Hanna, Sean Junor, and Maclean's columnist Andrew Potter. CNW media release 

UofT Establishes Fund for LGBT Students

While most universities across Canada are observing AIDS Awareness Week in various ways, the University of Toronto yesterday launched the Roberts Fund, established by Robert Schott in memory of Robert Beninati, his partner of more than 40 years. It will award $15,000 yearly for student bursaries, some used for emergency funding, to lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgendered students at UofT. UofT news

Employers Prefer Online Certificate Programs

A recent survey of 731 companies, nonprofit organizations, and government agencies by US-based Eduventures found that employers would prefer to send their employees to shorter, focused, customized certificate programs -- and if offered online, or in a hybrid delivery mode, so much the better. Employers recommend colleges and universities raise awareness of their certificate programs through active networking in professional associations, and in-person workplace visits, rather than more "passive" approaches. Media Release 

Cruise Through College on the "Scholar Ship"

Miami-based Royal Carribbean Cruises has joined with six universities (including the University of California at Berkeley) to launch an onboard international studies program next fall that will take some 600 students and 200 faculty on a 16-week academic voyage to ports in Portugal, Tahiti, Australia and China. Tuition is about $20,000 per semester, but there is a $2 million scholarship fund for the coming academic year. The University of Virginia has been affiliated with a similar "Semester at Sea" program for years. Miami Herald 

Postscript: June 17 2008:

"Scholar Ship" sinks program: Less than a year after its inception, the Scholar Ship is shutting down its programs due to a lack of funding. The Scholar Ship intends to refund all expected incoming students, and will look into alternative options for students enrolled in upcoming terms. A competing program, "Semester at Sea," will accept applications from those who intended to take the program. The Scholar Ship | Inside Higher Ed Releases "Party School" Rankings

Yesterday, Michigan State University was crowned the No. 1 school in America, "where students can have the most fun while putting forth the least effort." (Fortunately, no Canadian institutions were considered for this honour.) says "every academic list under the sun has been compiled except one that accurately reflects the intrinsic wants and needs of every college student -- sex, drugs, and rock & roll." MSU was judged in 10 categories, including percentage of single females, availability of free condoms, late-night bars, low SAT scores, drug interest (on Facebook), and percentage of students in a frat or sorority. Detroit News