Top Ten

January 28, 2009

Mixed reaction to PSE funding outlined in federal budget

While the Conservative government is being praised for earmarking $2 billion for post-secondary infrastructure in its latest budget, some organizations are disappointed that only 30% of that funding is going towards colleges. Other groups say the budget fails to address necessary investment in provincial transfers for core operating funding, academic research, and student financial aid. In comparison to the US stimulus package, in which billions of dollars are geared towards higher education, Canada's budget falls short, and may lead to a national brain drain. Budget 2009 | Globe and Mail | CBC | ACCC News Release | CSA News Release | CFS News Release | CAUT News Release | CREPUQ News Release | EPI News Release | AUCC News Release | OUSA News Release | CASA News Release | CFHSS Bulletin

Manitoba launches international education strategy

On Tuesday, the Manitoba government announced a new 5-year international education strategy focusing on ways it can help provincial educational institutions pursue and succeed in international education initiatives. An accompanying website provides foreign students an overview of living and studying in Manitoba, and includes resources for domestic students interested in studying and working abroad. The strategy is meant to build upon Manitoba's reputation as an excellent education destination. Manitoba News Release | International Education

Budget woes signal cost cuts at Brock

In order to ride out the economic downturn, all departments at Brock University will need to either cut costs or enhance revenues by about $7.5 million annually over the next 4 years, says Brock president Jack Lightstone. Because the final budget won't be tabled until June, it is too early to tell whether cuts will be made to programs, course offerings, or teaching positions. With enrolment expected to increase, Lightstone doesn't foresee any major staffing adjustments. There is less threat to Brock's capital budget due to its dependence on donations and one-time government grants. St. Catharines Standard

Delays in opening of uAlberta heart institute costly

According to documents obtained by the Edmonton Journal, ongoing delays in opening the Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute, located at the University of Alberta Hospital, may have caused a loss of reputation with donors, community leaders, and the university. The delays may have also embarrassed the government, caused potential harm for patients, and cost the province millions of dollars and key medical recruits. The institute was expected to start accepting patients last May, and is now scheduled to open this September. Edmonton Journal

UTM daycare centre construction delay frustrates student parents

Several student parents at the University of Toronto at Mississauga feel betrayed by repeated promises that a permanent licensed daycare centre will available at the university. Most recently, students were told the centre would open next month, but according to a UTM spokeswoman, the school has not secured all the necessary approvals and permits. One student says she had high hopes coming to UTM, but the university "only proved it's like any other place. Just another name. As a parent, I feel like I'm not important to them." Mississauga News

uWinnipeg proposes downtown athletic centre

The University of Winnipeg is considering opening a new indoor athletic facility at its downtown campus. Still in the planning stages, the field-house would serve not only university students, but also inner city kids and community groups. The project would be part of uWinnipeg's effort to revitalize the downtown core. University officials are consulting with community groups to determine what's needed. CTV

Ontario premier ponders creation of education-relations commission

In light of the strike at York University, Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty is considering establishing an educations-relations commission that would advise the government when strikes or lockouts at post-secondary institutions put education at risk. Ontario NDP Leader Howard Hampton says a commission may help influence people to bargain. The president of the York Federation of Students dismisses the proposal, noting that the best solution to end labour disputes is to provide better funding to universities. Globe and Mail | Toronto Star

Drop in academic misconduct cases at McMaster

According to McMaster University's annual report on academic integrity, 417 cases of academic misconduct were reported in 2007-2008, compared to 441 in 2006-2007. The report found health science was the leading faculty in terms of number of offences. 126 students in a first-year anatomy class were found to not have properly used information taken from other sources, resulting in a misdemeanor on the scale of plagiarism offences. Hamilton Spectator

No plans to review Sault College aircraft fleet

Sault College will not be conducting a major review of its fleet of training aircraft after engine problems forced 2 students in the school's aviation technology-flight program to make separate precautionary landings on Sunday. A college official does not suspect the airplanes' maintenance had anything to do with the landings, and says the planes are "very, very well-maintained." Both planes required "straightforward" repairs. The college has yet to resume training flights, a move not expected to impact students' studies. Sault Star

"Dean's Podcast" covers issues on graduate studies in Canada

"Dean's Podcast," produced by University Affairs, is a new monthly podcast focusing on issues shaping graduate studies in Canada. Hosted by Dalhousie University graduate studies dean Carolyn Watters, the first episode features Martin Kreiswirth, dean of graduate studies at McGill University, discussing his year as the president of the Canadian Association of Graduate Studies, the similarities and differences he's seen between grad studies in Ontario and Quebec, and "cotutelles" -- joint doctoral programs offered through partnerships with French post-secondary institutions. Dean's Podcast