Top Ten

August 13, 2008

York introduces Aboriginal languages to graduate work

Starting this fall, York University graduate students can complete and defend a thesis or dissertation in an Aboriginal language, making the school the first in Canada to officially sanction graduate work in a language other than English and French. The amendment to the language requirement was initially proposed by York's Graduate Program in Environmental Studies, after 2 students expressed interest in writing their theses in their native language. Following more discussion, the change was expanded to include all graduate studies programs at York. Y-File

$8 million for Northern College trades and technology centre

The Ontario government announced yesterday it will commit $8 million to Northern College to build a new Nor Tech Centre for Trades and Technology at its Timmins campus. The $13.5-million project includes renovations to existing labs, and a satellite trades centre in Moosonee. The project will add over 35,000 square feet of new learning space, through which Northern will welcome more than 120 new students a year to the school's skilled trades and technology programs. Ontario News Release | Timmins Daily Press

$4 million for Hearst campus in Timmins

On Tuesday, the Ontario government announced a $3.5-million investment in a new Collège de Hearst campus in Timmins, part of an initiative to increase university access for Francophone students in Northern Ontario. The funds will support a permanent campus to replace facilities currently leased in Timmins, which will be built on the same site as the new Collège Boréal campus. The joint campus will offer high school and college diplomas, skills training and university degrees. Ontario News Release | Timmins Daily Press

$750,000 endowment fund for Métis students at NorQuest

The Métis Nation of Alberta Métis Education Foundation and the Alberta government are donating $750,000 to Edmonton-based NorQuest College for the creation of the Métis Student Awards endowment fund, the largest in the college's history. Starting this September, the endowment fund will provide eligible students with undergraduate bursaries and awards, ranging from $1,500 to $3,000. Priority will be given to students in NorQuest's Aboriginal University Transition program. 16% of the college's student population are Aboriginal, nearly a quarter of whom are Métis. NorQuest News Release | Edmonton Journal

MUN profs perplexed by Williams' call for co-operation

Several Memorial University professors are puzzled by Newfoundland and Labrador premier Danny Williams' call for co-operation between the university and the provincial government, suggesting faculties could work more closely with related government departments. Professors say co-operation is already in place. One prof says faculties cannot become consulting agencies, which would threaten academic freedom. Another prof calls Williams' statement "vacuous." The president of MUN's faculty association says the province's involvement in the presidential search may have a negative on impact the relationship between researchers and the province. Western Star

Hate crime investigation at Wilfrid Laurier

Waterloo Regional Police and staff at Wilfrid Laurier University are investigating an incident of a homophobic message found carved in the wall in the men's washroom in Laurier's arts building over the weekend. Swastikas were carved to represent the letter "s" in the message. Police are looking into whether this latest incident is related to 4 other hate crimes that occurred on campus in the last year. CTV (video)

"Green" initiatives at Providence College

Providence College and Seminary, a Christian-based institution located in Otterburne Manitoba, is taking on a number of initiatives to make the campus more "green." Providence's custodial staff now use 100% environmentally friendly cleaning products, such as micro-fibre cloths and biodegradable garbage bags, and has set a new goal of implementing even higher environmental standards to the products used. Meanwhile, the college's new Student Life Centre, opening in January, will become the greenest building on campus by using a geothermal heating system, which draws heat from the ground. Providence News Release | Manitoba School Goes Geothermal

Canada eases permanent residence application for grads

On Tuesday, the federal government introduced a new immigration class under which certain temporary foreign workers and international student graduates with Canadian experience can apply for permanent residence. Starting this October, those who qualify under the Canadian Experience Class can apply within Canada while continuing to work or study in the country. To be eligible, foreign students graduates must have completed a program of at least 2 years at a Canadian institution and have 1 year of work experience. Canada News Release | Globe and Mail

US students, colleges not ready for each other

At a forum held on Tuesday at the Center for American Progress, several presenters argued that the US government and colleges are doing very little to ensure students graduate. A center-commissioned report cites research indicating a "readiness problem" on the parts of students and colleges, as higher education policy tends to focus more on making college affordable rather than on student success. The government should do more by giving money to schools lacking adequate resources and holding schools more accountable for student education and graduation. The Chronicle of Higher Education (subscription required)

US employers slow to accept online degrees

While US employers and hiring managers say online degrees are more acceptable now than in recent years, job candidates with traditional university and college credentials are favoured, according to Vault Inc.'s 2008 Online Degrees Survey. While 83% of managers surveyed said online degrees were more acceptable today than 5 years ago, only 19% have hired an applicant possessing only an online degree. Over half said online degrees were as acceptable as bachelor's and graduate degrees, but not as credible. 63% said they favoured candidates with traditional degrees, up from 55% in a previous survey. Vault News Release | 2008 Online Degrees Survey Results