Top Ten

December 20, 2007

FNUC makes history with new urban reserve agreement

The First Nations University of Canada might be the first higher ed institute located on a reserve. The Star Blanket Cree Nation and the City of Regina have signed two agreements that are bringing the school closer to its goal. This will be the first urban reserve established for educational purposes, rather than commercial development.  Before the land transfers hands, the federal government must still sign off.

Memorial's med school receives $27 million for growth

Newfoundland & Labrador has committed to a $15 million expansion of Memorial University's medical education faculty, and $11.75 million toward annual operating costs.  The funds will allow for the school to hire faculty and staff consistent with modern education facilities.  Enrolment will increase from 60 to 78 students over the next 5 years.  Next September, 46 of 64 student spots will be reserved for students from NL.  NB and PEI have purchased 12 seats, and the rest are open to students from other provinces.

uManitoba discovery named TIME's #1 medical breakthrough of 2007

TIME Magazine has listed a study led by a University of Manitoba researcher as the #1 medical breakthrough of the year.  Dr. Moses of uManitoba was a principal investigator in research that connected male circumcision to reduced risk of HIV infection.  Clinical trials held around the world verified the results, finding that circumcised men were 50% less likely to acquire HIV during sex with women.

CIBT buys Sprott Shaw to enter China market

CIBT Education Group, the Canadian company that runs 17 PSE institutions in China, has now purchased Sprott-Shaw Community College, one of the oldest career colleges in Vancouver.  CIBT plans to export many of Sprott's 140 programs to China, and paid $12 million in cash for the privilege.  CIBT runs "2+2" programs, in which students study in China for 2 years and then complete their education in Britain or Canada.

New UQAM rector promises to compromise, not bully

The Université de Québec à Montréal's new Rector has been called a "strong-arm" brought in to keep unions in their place and cut costs.  Claude Corbo says, rather, that he will not "bulldoze and destroy," but be a "man of consensus and compromise."  The Rector is calling for rapid and dramatic changes at UQAM, starting in the new year.  UQAM is struggling under the weight of an underfunded real estate project, which is costing $106 million more than planned.

uToronto breaks up all-male residence due to poor behaviour

The University of Toronto's "Animal House" is opening its doors to women, by order from above.  Gate House, one of the school's last all-male residences, has been charged with "gross insensitivity... flagrant acts of defiance and behaviour... disparaging and demeaning of women."  Over the last month, the Gate House boys are charged with leaving a cooked pig's head in a women's washroom, and erecting a 2.5 metre snow penis in front of the residence. The 28 students currently living in Gate House are being rehoused by the university, despite the opinion of some students that the university is "overreacting."

uToronto earns high marks from grad students

The University of Toronto's graduate students gave their school "top marks" for the quality of their educational experience in the recent G13 Canadian Graduate and Professional Student Survey. 88% of uToronto grad students rated their overall experience good or excellent; 91% rated their academic experience as good or excellent; and 82% rated their faculty-student relationship as good or excellent. uToronto's marks increased in all four categories included in the student survey.

Ryerson looks forward as research and graduate university

Ryerson University is celebrating "unprecedented" growth of its research programs.  Scholarly Research and Creative activity funding increased dramatically throughout 2007, and contributed to Ryerson's "growing reputation as a graduate and research university."  Sponsored research income grew 32% from $12.2 million in 2006 to $16.2 million in 2007, and the portfolio is expected to double again within the next five years.

US PSE enrolment to jump 17% by 2016

The US Department of Education's National Center for Education Statistics projects in a report released Tuesday that US college enrolment will continue to climb over the next decade, with female and minority students expected to be the fastest-growing groups.  Enrolment is expected to increase by 17% between 2005 and 2016; 60% are expected to be women, and more than a third to be from minority groups. 

Marketers behind the trend on word-of-mouth opportunity

A new report by global PR firm Ketchum and the University of Southern California finds that only 24% of marketers have a word-of-mouth program in place, despite the parallel conclusion that consumers are relying increasingly on advice from family, friends and experts in a variety of decision scenarios.  Academica Group's annual applicant survey found that 87% of PSE applicants are influenced by a friend's recommendation when deciding between colleges and universities, and 81% are influenced by family opinion. (Academica is now lining up participating schools for the 2008 UCAS Applicant Study.)