Top Ten

May 1, 2009

UWO to eliminate 114 positions

The University of Western Ontario will lay off 55 management and support personnel, as outlined in its 2009-10 budget. UWO has also cut 28 positions currently vacant and 31 employees have decided to take the voluntary retirement incentive program, resulting in a total of 114 full-time positions being eliminated. The job cuts come as UWO enters the new fiscal year with a $13.3-million deficit, which will be made up from an operating reserve. Western News | London Free Press

uAlberta receives $6-million gift for medical imaging research

Medical Imaging Consultants, a partnership of Edmonton-area radiologists, has donated $6 million to the University of Alberta's faculty of medicine and dentistry to support graduate education and research in the medical imaging field. The gift will fund the Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute MIC Endowed Research Chair in Cardiac Imaging. The donation will also support 6 fellowship positions annually in radiology, which will allow radiology residents to take an additional year of graduate-level training in several sub-specialties. uAlberta ExpressNews

SFU introduces FD grade

As part of new changes to toughen its policies on academic dishonesty and student misconduct, Simon Fraser University has introduced a new letter grade called FD, meaning failed for academic dishonesty. The grade will be available to department chairs who believe a student's behaviour warrants a severe penalty. SFU has also established a single student code of conduct covering both good-conduct issues and academic integrity. New policies express explicit prohibitions on hazing, bullying, and possession of firearms on campus. SFU News

Funding shortage will force closure of UNB-based adult learning centre

The Knowledge Centre for Adult Learning, based at the University of New Brunswick's Fredericton campus, is scheduled to close in July if it does not receive another round of federal funding. The centre's co-ordinator says shutting down would hamper efforts to boost adult literacy rates and leave fewer learning opportunities for adults. A 2003 Statistics Canada report found that half of anglophone and two-thids of francophone adults in New Brunswick scored below Level 3, which is considered necessary in being able to function in an information-based society. Saint John Telegraph Journal

Sauder opens Centre for Sustainability and Social Innovation

Last Thursday, the Sauder School of Business at the University of British Columbia launched the Centre for Sustainability and Social Innovation, designed to assist the business community in addressing global issues and educate the next generation of green entrepreneurs. The centre will advance sustainable business practices in areas such as carbon markets and aquaculture. It will also develop new approaches to social enterprise, including social marketing and micro-credit initiatives. UBC News Release

WLU pool to undergo $2-million renovation

Wilfrid Laurier University's Olympic-size swimming pool will undergo significant repairs this summer as a result of a funding partnership comprising the university, students, community aquatic groups, and the Cities of Kitchener and Waterloo. The 35-year-old pool was set to close last August because, according to WLU's president, the university could not justify the costs of the much-needed repairs given the school's limited resources. Fundraising efforts earned the university over $2 million to cover the renovation costs. The repair project is expected to be finished by the end of September. WLU News Release

Ontario revises eligibility of 2 student grant programs

The Ontario Ministry of Training, Colleges, and Universities announced Friday that the province's Textbook and Technology Grant and Distance Grants will no longer be available to all full-time students, just to those who qualify for provincial student loans. The Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance expresses disappointment in the government's decision, stating that in these difficult economic times it is not wise to reduce financial support for students. Ontario News Release | OUSA News Release

Alberta may make evolution classes optional

Under proposed legislation in Alberta, provincial schools would be required to notify parents in advance about subject matter dealing explicitly with evolution, sexuality, or sexual orientation, and parents would be given the authority to exclude their children from classes if such topics come up. The head of the Alberta Teachers' Association will meet with the province's education minister today to discuss his concerns; he believes it would be a mistake for public schools to begin excluding based on religious preference. The legislation could become law within a few weeks. CBC

CNA launches live chat function for prospective students

The College of the North Atlantic is now offering a live chat feature that allows college recruitment staff to engage in real-time conversation with prospective students. Through the live chat, potential students can receive information regarding application deadlines, program costs, residence facilities, and credit transfers. CNA Live Chat

MUN names "Rant Like Rick" contest winners

Memorial University has announced the winners of its third annual "Rant Like Rick" competition. Elizabeth Hann, a grade 12 student from St. John's, won the $10,000 grand prize for her rant focusing on the drama surrounding high school graduation. Grade 11 student Melanie Hoskins, also of St. John's, and Stacy Gagnidze, a high school senior from Calgary, earned the runner-up prizes of free tuition for 2 semesters at MUN for their videos. Hoskins ranted about the lack of trans-Atlantic air service in Newfoundland, and Gagnidze commented on Prime Minister Stephen Harper's hair. MUN News Release | Rant Like Rick 2009 Winners