Top Ten

December 19, 2006

UNBC May Face $2 Million Shortfall in 2007/08

The 250News blog from Prince George, BC, is abuzz that the University of Northern British Columbia may face a $2 million shortfall in 2007/08. The university is reportedly working on a three-year budget process with a focus on sustainability: "we’re identifying new and expanded sources of revenues and aiming to make strategic cuts that will keep employee reductions to a minimum." Opinion250

New Home for Archives of Ontario at York

Yesterday the Ontario government announced that it will partner with York University to build a modern, 98,000 sq. ft. facility for the Archives of Ontario on the Keele Campus. The province aims to protect Ontario's documentary heritage and also provide easier access to the public. The new, "green" facility is scheduled to open in 2009. Media release

Dalhousie Opens GIS Centre

Dalhousie University recently opened the Elizabeth May Geomatics Computer Centre, equipped with dual-screen workstations, GIS software, SMARTboards and the latest ergonomics. Mapping has many useful applications for students in sociology, history, management, planning, computer science and even religious studies. "Probably more than 90% of information has a spatial or location component that can be displayed visually on a GIS." Dalhousie News

Plenty of Nurses in Ontario - Just Not Working

A recent study from McMaster University reports that Ontario has the second-highest percentage of internationally-educated nurses in Canada, but that many of those entering the province never become employed as professional nurses. They face barriers to entering the workforce at every stage of the immigration process, and about 40% never complete the registration process. The report also urges permanent and consistent funding for bridging and upgrading programs, most of which are currently funded on a temporary basis. McMaster Daily News

Ex-Instructor Criticizes OCAD Advertising Degrees

After resigning his teaching post at the Ontario College of Art & Design, Allan Kazmer wrote a scathing opinion piece for the national industry journal, Marketing magazine. In "Killing us by degree," Kazmer decries the changes being made to the award-winning ad program in order to satisfy degree requirements: reducing studio time, adding liberal studies, and shifting toward full-time credentialed faculty instead of working industry professionals. A poll of readers thereafter found the vast majority concerned these changes would "gut the OCAD ad program." Opinion Column | Letter to the Editor

The Cost of Fundraising

UWO's VP External Ted Garrard, who is also chairman of Imagine Canada, defends the ability of Canada's charitable sector to self-regulate in an article in yesterday's Globe & Mail. MADD Canada, in particular, has come under criticism for spending more than 20% of its donations on fundraising in the guise of education and communication, including door-to-door solicitation and telemarketing. Some experts say that 20% is an outdated and inadequate measure. Globe & Mail

Researchers Connect with High School Students Online

The Virtual Researcher On Call (VROC) project launched last Friday at Sir Frederick Banting secondary school in London, Ontario. With $200,000 support from the province, VROC will link university researchers with high school youth in real-time, via web links and videoconferencing. VROC, an initiative of Partners in Research (PIR), is available to all Ontario secondary students, in both official languages. Once funding is secured, the program will be extended nationally. Western News

Applicants Overloaded with Viewbooks?

USA Today says desirable college applicants -- for example, Hispanic males with high grades -- are being deluged as colleges roll out direct recruiting -- slick brochures, emails, instant messages, and "telecounselor" calls to applicants and their parents. The average private university spends more than $2,000 US on marketing and recruiting for each student it successfully enrolls, not including billions spent on merit-based tuition discounts. After the high school cohort peaks in 2009, it will be a seller's market which will almost inevitably mean more aggressive competition among colleges. USA Today

Text Messaging in Canada

A recent survey found that 7.8 million Canadians use text messaging -- but that represents only 45% of cell phone users, compared to 84% in the UK and other jurisdictions. (By comparison, just 13% use wireless email.) SMS is an important part of everyday life for Canadian teens and young adults, however, with 79% of those aged 18-24 using text messaging. SMS is growing popular for online contests, radio DJ surveys, and award nominations. Many Canadians use SMS because it's discreet or considerate in restaurants, bars, libraries, restrooms, and yes, classrooms. Most SMS messages say "Hello." Fido Survey (PDF)

Harvard Recruitment Video Parodied on YouTube

A "spectacularly stodgy" video clip created for the Harvard University economics department website has been posted on YouTube, along with parody versions created by Harvard students. The profs admit that, while their intention was to create a personal connection, the result was instead "pompous" and "stilted." The parodies mock "two Professors skilled in the art of seduction," and the decision to come to Harvard as "a trivial model of compensating differentials." The profs now admit that effective recruitment videos require more specialized skills than they possess. InsideHigherEd