Top Ten

December 9, 2008

$100 million for UPEI vet college

Following the Council of Atlantic Premiers meeting in Summerside PEI on Monday, the 4 provincial leaders signed a new $98-million 5-year agreement to fund the University of Prince Edward Island's Atlantic Veterinary College, making it the largest deal signed since the college opened over 20 years ago. The college -- the only one of its kind in Atlantic Canada -- depends on financial support from all Atlantic provinces. The vet school is currently undergoing a $42-million expansion. Journal Pioneer | Charlottetown Guardian

Trent opens forensic science facility

Last Friday, Trent University officially opened its crime scene house teaching and research facility. Located in a converted 2-storey farmhouse on university lands, the crime scene house is designed to teach forensic science students professional investigation skills in a realistic learning environment. The facility will provide students with opportunities to research crucial aspects of crime scene investigation. The facility will also serve as a venue for public workshops on crime scene analysis. Trent News Release

McMaster breaks ground for CANMET

McMaster University held a groundbreaking ceremony last Friday for the federal CANMET Materials Technology Laboratory, which is relocating to Hamilton from Ottawa. The largest lab of its kind in Canada, CANMET develops new materials and manufacturing processes for Canada's energy, transportation, and metal-manufacturing sectors. Announced in 2005, the relocation project includes a $46-million budget for laboratory constructions and operational expenses. The facility is slated to open in 2010. McMaster Daily News

UWO plans "green" engineering building

Set to open next year, the University of Western Ontario's new engineering building, known as the Claudette MacKay-Lassonde Pavilion, will be the university's first certified LEED facility. The $22-million building will feature an atrium with a living wall -- a vertical garden where plants help clean the air. The engineering building will support students and faculty in making London "a centre for leading-edge environmental and energy research." Western News | London Free Press

Ryerson president envisions "digital hub" for downtown Toronto

In an interview with the CBC, Ryerson University Sheldon discusses what he has in mind for the school's presence along Yonge Street in Toronto, where the former Sam the Record Man store, which Ryerson purchased in January, is located. Levy describes his vision for a "digital hub" -- a meeting place of high-tech retail outlets where the best minds in industry and academia can collaborate. Levy says Ryerson has been working with other universities on ways to support the digital media industry and to create programs to develop the talent. CBC

SFU forms double-degree partnership with Australian university

Simon Fraser University has partnered with Melbourne-based Monash University to offer a double-degree program in arts and social sciences to both Australian and Canadian students. Students who begin this program at SFU will take 5 years to complete, while those who first study at Monash will finish in 4 years. An official with the faculty hopes the program will be attractive to Australians who are also interested in working in Whistler, as SFU works on a full trimester system, thereby allowing students to work during the winter and study in the spring and summer terms. Pique Newsmagazine

St. Clair College introduces fast-track program at Thames campus

In an effort to increase enrolment to 1,500 students at its Thames campus in Chatham Ontario, St. Clair College will shorten its 2-year law and security administration program, reducing the semesters from 4 to 3. While there was "a great deal of trepidation" a few years ago when the college introduced a fast-track version of its office administration program and eliminated the regular program, enrolment in the course has since increased. There are other indications that people prefer compressed programs, such as the enrolment boom in weekend courses at the Windsor campus. Chatham Daily News

US court sides with university in MySpace photo case

A US judge has rejected Stacy Snyder's lawsuit against Pennsylvania-based Millersville University for denying her an education degree in connection to a "drunken pirate" photo on MySpace. The judge ruled that the discovery of the photo by the school at which Snyder was student-teaching only precipitated the decision to end her assignment, and subsequently deny her a teaching certificate, as Snyder received negative performance evaluations. Millersville maintains that free speech was not the issue, as Snyder claimed, but rather her reportedly poor performance in the classroom. The Chronicle of Higher Education (subscription required) | ReadWriteWeb

Osgoode Hall prof's blog one of best legal websites

The American Bar Association Journal has named "Slaw," a blog moderated by York University professor emeritus Simon Fodden, as "one of the 100 best Web sites primarily written by lawyers, for lawyers." Fodden started Slaw over 3 years ago, and the blog is largely for Canada's legal research and IT community. The journal describes Slaw as "technologically universal and insightful." The Court, a blog written by York's Osgoode Hall Law School students and faculty, was named the best new law blog of 2007 by the Canadian Law blog awards. Y-File | Slaw

"How would you poison someone without the police finding out?"

This question is one of several the University of Cambridge poses to applicants. Another example: "If I were a grapefruit, would I rather be seedless or non-seedless?" Meanwhile, the University of Oxford asks questions like "Would you rather be a novel or a poem?" and "Can a thermostat think?" The 2 prestigious UK universities say the exercise is meant to find out how well prospective students can think, not just how much they know. To the casual observer, these questions may seem a bit odd. "Are they on drugs, these people in Cambridge?" CNN