Top Ten

April 11, 2008

New $36-million health sciences complex at UTM

Construction is slated to start this fall on a new $36-million health sciences complex at uToronto's Mississauga campus.  The new four-story facility will be home to the Mississauga academy of medicine and other health-related programs.  The complex will benefit from state-of-the-art instructional, student support and biomedical research facilities, and will encourage interaction and collaboration between disciplines.  uToronto News Release

FPSEBC calls for emergency summit regarding funding shortfall

The Federation of Post-Secondary Educators of BC is calling for an emergency summit of post-secondary leaders, to take a "united stand against provincial funding cuts."  "The Minister is trying to pretend that everything is okay. He's wrong."  This call is in response to the mid-March announcement that funding for PSE institutions would be cut 2.6% on April 1, 2008, and the Minister's comments yesterday in response to an outcry against program cuts and faculty layoffs across the province.  FPSEBC points out that in September 2007, 75% of British Columbians supported investing more in public PSE.  Federation News Release

Education minister "scolds" Dal / Memorial for new B.Ed program

On Wednesday, Dalhousie and Memorial Universities announced a new 16-month bachelor of education program in Halifax.  CBC reports that NS Minister of Education Karen Casey is disappointed with the decision to create another teacher education program in Nova Scotia.  3 months ago the education department recommended an end to education partnerships such as the one just announced.  More than 1,000 new teachers are graduating each year in Nova Scotia, yet less than 400 are actually needed in classrooms.  CBC

$27-million grant program for rural and northern Ontario students

Yesterday, the Ontario government announced to students a set of travel grants for rural and northern students living more than 80km away from a college or university. Originally outlined in the 2008 Budget, the grants include $500 per term for students commuting long distances, and $300 per year for students who move away from home to attend PSE. It is expected that 24,000 students will benefit from this $27-million program over the next 3 years.  Ontario News Release | Maclean's On Campus

Laurier launches tribute website for memorial donations

Wilfrid Laurier University has launched a unique tribute website to "celebrate lives of alumni and friends of the university," and to address the increasing demand for ways to honour loved ones or celebrate accomplishments.  The WLU tribute site creates a virtual community around the celebration of lives.  Each tribute features a photograph of the individual, a "life story," and a guest book to allow people to post their memories or thoughts -- as well as a link to make a tribute donation in the person's honour, of course!  WLU News Release | Tribute for Dr. Flora Roy

Incoming UPEI students receive $2,000 bursary

PEI undergraduate students starting their first year of full-time PSE at UPEI in September will receive an automatic $2,000 George Coles bursary.  Upper-year students will be eligible for additional financial support.  The bursaries come from a commitment made in the PEI Throne Speech.  Without the bursaries, UPEI's tuition sits at $4,400 per full-time student, and is already one of the most affordable schools in the Maritimes -- now even more so.  UPEI News Release

Postscript: April 21 2008

The George Coles Bursary will be given to every PEI student who begins first-year studies this fall at UPEI, and varying amounts will be given to eligible students entering Holland College or la Société éducative, depending on the rate of tuition. The intent of the bursary is to encourage Island students to pursue PSE in PEI. PEI Government News Release       

uSask awaits government decision on housing crisis

The University of Saskatchewan has "long known" about a student housing shortage, particularly critical among graduate students, but is forced to sit on its hands until May 30th before taking action.  The University has proposed to build 200 new housing units, and is waiting for approval from the province's Affordable Housing Task Force.  A school representative reports that there are only about 67 two-bedroom apartments available for students, and at least one student with children is currently struggling to find housing.  The Star Phoenix

uToronto commerce program renamed Rotman Commerce

The University of Toronto's undergraduate commerce program has received a $2.5-million gift from Sandra and Joseph Rotman.  The renamed Rotman Commerce program will also have a new curriculum starting this summer, which will include more exposure to management courses.  Rotman Commerce will continue to be offered jointly by the Faculty of Arts and Science and the Rotman School of Management.  uToronto News Release

New campus security legislation in Virginia

The state of Virginia has just passed more than 24 bills to improve communication between mental-health staff and strengthen security on public campuses.  The new legislation was written in response to the April 2007 shootings at Virginia Tech.  Colleges will now be required by law to notify parents if a student receives mental-health treatment, to install emergency notification systems by 2009, and to maintain a written emergency-management plan.  The Chronicle of Higher Education (subscription required)

Almost 100 US colleges targeted by email scam

More than 86 colleges have been targeted by an email phishing scam.  Hackers have been sending messages to students, professors and staff members across the US, trying to get them to reveal their school login information and other personal information.  61 schools reported that someone had fallen for the ploy.  The Chronicle of Higher Education