Top Ten

October 4, 2007

New $250 million sports centre proposed for SFU

A $250 million fitness complex has been proposed for Simon Fraser University's Burnaby campus.  The facility would include 2 rooftop fields, an olympic-sized pool, and an Olympic-standard athlete blood-testing lab.  The complex is a public-private effort between SFU and regional sports "heavyweights" such as the CEO and president of the BC Lions. 

COU predicts 120,000 new students in Ontario for 2021

Despite a $6.2 billion infusion into the PSE sector by the Ontario Liberal government, many groups are trying to get higher ed funding into the election spotlight with the argument that it simply wasn't enough.  The Council of Ontario Universities estimates that due to enrolment increases Ontario could see 120,000 extra students in the system by 2021.  As we reported on Tuesday, OCUFA is asking for an immediate investment of $1.6 billion.

Quest U students move into local hotel

Quest University Canada's inaugural class is being treated to a two-month hotel stay because the new university's on-campus housing is still being built.  The 80 students spent 3 weeks at the Red Mountain ski resort, and have now moved to a closer hotel until the end of October.  The school is covering the cost of accommodation and providing transportation to and from the mountaintop campus.  A shortage of skilled construction workers in BC is being blamed for delays.  The school's classrooms, cafeteria, library and athletics facilities are all open and operational. 

Kwantlen partners with New Caledonia to offer degrees

Kwantlen University College announced yesterday a memorandum of understanding with the College of New Caledonia, to offer "integrated degree pathways awarding a Bachelor of Arts in Criminology, Fine Arts, or General Studies; faculty research opportunities in Criminology; and faculty professional development exchange opportunities in Nursing." Kwantlen became a degree-granting university college in 1995, and was recommended to become a regional university in the Campus 2020 report. 

SFU addresses increased depression among students

Depression among PSE students is on the rise, and is most often seen in young female students.  At Simon Fraser University, staff note that young women are more often diagnosed with the condition, however males may be under-represented as they are half as likely to seek treatment.  43% of SFU students reported that stress was having a negative impact on their academic performance (2004), and more than 40% of students reported feeling "so depressed it was difficult to function" between 1 and 10 times in a 12 month period.

Students feel picked on by Waterloo noise bylaw

Waterloo's universities are working with the city to ease tension over a new 24-hour noise bylaw that has been slapping students with $300 fines for excessive noise.  Police and bylaw officers started the year with a strict zero tolerance policy. Concerns have been raised that the city's student population was being unfairly targeted by the project, and was often the victim of unjust fines. 

Pfizer supports new research chair at uToronto

Pfizer Canada has donated $1.5 million towards a new $2 million research chair, the Pfizer Chair in Rheumatology, at uToronto's Faculty of Medicine.  Pfizer and uToronto have a longstanding relationship. 

Cambrian College hosts first Aboriginal ceremony by teleconference

Cambrian College held Canada's first traditional Aboriginal ceremony via videoconference yesterday, from its eDome facility on campus.  Cambrian's Wabnode Institute held a "Blanket Awakening" ceremony, which was attended virtually by employees and Elders at Capital Health in Edmonton, Alberta.  Students, faculty, administration and Elders at Cambrian College attended in person.

The print vs online document debate

An article in this month's University Business presents the results of an informal survey of PSE marketing professionals, finding that most institutions provide most documents in both print and online versions, although news material is most likely to be provided online only. Colleges and universities are spending more on web and less on print, and web is preferred as a medium to reach current students on campus. About 47% of schools still offer only print versions of their annual viewbook.

US colleges offering expanded career services to mature alumni

Some US colleges and universities have started opening up their student career services to their entire alumni population, not just students and recent graduates.  A few institutions are hiring full-time counsellors specifically to serve alumni.  uHouston offered services to alumni when the oil industry went bust in the 1980s, and similar demand rose across the continent during the tech collapse in the early 2000s.  The concept of having staff entirely dedicated to alumni career services is, however, a new phenomenon -- possibly caused by trends toward multiple career directions.