Top Ten

August 26, 2008

Police investigate UQAM construction fiasco

Quebec provincial police are now investigating 2 bungled real estate projects at the Université du Québec à Montréal, nearly 3 months after Quebec's auditor-general released a scathing report on the "poor management" of the projects. The investigation is expected to focus on 3 former UQAM administrators, who allegedly hid key facts from university staff as costs skyrocketed. The 2 projects may push UQAM's debt load to $500 million by 2012. Montreal Gazette

$7 million for La Cité Orleans campus

On Tuesday, the Ontario government announced $6.75 million in funding for La Cité Collegiale's proposed $18-million campus in Orleans. The funds will support the construction of a new Research and Training Centre in the Construction Trades. Earlier this month, the City of Orleans approved a donation of 21 acres of land to La Cité for the campus. Ontario News Release | CBC

Quest University most expensive Canadian institution

Quest University, a private liberal-arts school based in Squamish BC, is the most expensive institution in Canada, according to Forbes. Current annual tuition at Quest costs $24,000. Forbes lists Acadia University as Canada's most expensive public institution, which charges $8,062 a year for tuition. America's costliest school is George Washington University, where annual tuition and fees total $39,240 US. Forbes | Slideshow

Postscript: Aug 28 2008
Top Ten subscriber Cindy James points out that Acadia University has been working on its tuition fee structure to reflect a more factual representation of costs. The university now separates its laptop and ancillary fees from the actual tuition fee. Therefore, the $8,062 annual tuition rate suggested by Forbes does not accurately reflect fees specific to tuition. In the 2008-09, full time undergraduate Canadian students who are not Nova Scotia residents pay $6,652, while those from the province pay $5,891. The changes are outlined on Acadia TV

Seneca, uToronto form transfer agreement

Seneca College and the University of Toronto have partnered to allow liberal arts diploma students at Seneca to transfer to uToronto to finish off a degree. Seneca students will be able to get up to 6 transfer credits for their college work. Students in the program will be affiliated with Woodsworth College. Up to 25 students will be admitted in the official pilot phase of the program in 2010. The Seneca agreement is a first for uToronto's downtown campus. uToronto News

"Le Banquet" explores Quebec's "bankrupt" PSE system

Montreal filmmaker Sébastien Rose's latest film, "Le Banquet," depicts a shooting at a Montreal university, echoing past incidents at Ecole Polytechnique, Concordia University and Dawson College. The film is about much more than a campus shooting, according to Rose; it tackles Quebec's "bankrupt" PSE system. "Le Banquet" tells the story of students fighting against tuition hikes, while a university official treats the school like a money-making corporation. Rose believes Montreal's history of campus shootings underscores a crisis in Quebec's education system. The film premiered at the World Film Festival last night, and opens this Friday. Montreal Gazette

MUN renovates Barnes House residence

Barnes House, a residence at Memorial University, is undergoing major renovations. In addition to new plumbing and heating systems, the residence will be equipped with high-speed Internet access and cable television in all rooms. Students set to move into Barnes House will be housed temporarily off-campus at a local Holiday Inn. The renovations at Barnes House coincide with ground work preparation for the construction of a new residence at MUN's St. John's campus. MUN News

uWaterloo freshmen celebrate 20 years of being "Single and Sexy"

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the University of Waterloo's acclaimed orientation play "Single and Sexy," which depicts the lives and experiences of first-year students. The play tackles topics such as suicide, date rape, eating disorders, racism and substance abuse. "Single and Sexy" helps students become more aware of such issues, and informs them about available support and counselling services. The play has had numerous adaptations across Canada, as well as in Australia and New Zealand. uWaterloo News Release

VIU promotes carpooling to campus

Vancouver Island University is trying to reduce the number of vehicles students and staff drive to campus by encouraging carpooling through a free online rideshare registry. The university is also offering special carpool parking passes, raising parking fees to deter use, and working with the Regional District of Nanaimo in an effort to increase public transit to campus. Approximately 2,800 vehicles, most with single occupants, arrive at campus each day, and VIU aims to reduce this number by 25% in the next 5 years. Nanaimo Daily News

8 new academic programs at Carleton

Carleton University is adding 8 new degree programs to its academic offerings this fall, including the redesigned MBA. The Master of Arts in Music and Culture features the first graduate course in Canada on musical icon Glenn Gould. In light of growing interest in religion courses at Carleton, as well as the "unprecedented popularity" of Muslim-related issues, the university is adding a Minor in Muslim Studies. Carleton News Release | Ottawa Sun

Trend in US colleges monitoring off-campus behaviour

A number of US colleges are adopting off-campus codes of conduct to monitor student behaviour. If a University of Washington student breaks a city noise bylaw, the infraction will land him or her in the student conduct office. A Seattle University official checks Facebook for code-violating parties advertised on the site. At Ohio State University, off-campus regulations target incidents of assault, drug dealing, and other actions affecting campus safety. While some argue colleges are over-reaching their authority, school officials say such policy is meant to educate students about responsible citizenship. Boston Globe