Top Ten

June 16, 2009

SSHRC funding goes forward for York U conference

The Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council announced Monday that it has accepted assurance from York University officials that planning for next week's Israeli/Palestine conference is following provisions outlined in the Grant Holder's Guide for SSHRC's Aid to Research Workshops and Conferences Program, from which funding was requested. SSHRC was informed that there were minor changes in conference programming since the funding application was made and that the aims of the event remain unchanged. SSHRC says it is "unwavering in its commitment to independent peer review and its grant policies and procedures." SSHRC has been accused of bowing to political pressure after Science and Technology Minister Gary Goodyear requested a funding review following public criticism about the conference. SSHRC News

uMontréal cancer research institute launches $25-million fundraising campaign

Last Wednesday, the Université de Montréal's Institute for Research in Immunology and Cancer announced a new $25-million fundraising campaign, which is part of the future major tripartite campaign of the university. The campaign was set in motion with a $5-million gift from the Marcelle and Jean Coutu Foundation, which will help IRIC continue its international recruitment efforts and attract researchers to become part of an elite team dedicated to uncovering the causes of cancer and developing effective treatments. uMontréal News Release

McGill Annual Fund reaches $9 million

For the first time in its 61-year history, the McGill Annual Fund has garnered $9 million in donations. The Annual Fund is McGill University's yearly appeal to faculty, staff, alumni, parents, and friends to help support the institution's most pressing needs. Giving has risen in 7 of McGill's 9 annual funds. The donation growth is being attributed to several strategies developed during the conceptualization of Campaign McGill, such as expanding the donor base in major international markets like London, New York, and Boston. The university is enjoying a donor retention rate of approximately 70%. McGill Reporter

BCIT strategic plan acknowledges shifting environment

Late last month, the British Columbia Institute of Technology published its new 5-year strategic plan, which was developed in consultation with students, staff, faculty, alumni, industry, and the public. The strategic plan is designed to keep the institution responsive to an ever-evolving environment. The plan states that in order to remain integral to BC's prosperity, BCIT must anticipate changes in expectations from students, the province, and the labour market. Among the school's goals are providing quality programs reflecting market needs, improving student diversity, and advancing the state-of-practice. BCIT 2009-2014 Strategic Plan

93% of 2006 CNA, NL private college graudates satisfied with education

According to new data from the Newfoundland and Labrador government, over 93% of students who graduated from the College of the North Atlantic and provincial private colleges in 2006 reported satisfaction with their investment of time for class and study a year after finishing school. Graduates of 3-year CNA programs had the highest full-time employment rate (85.6%), while students who completed one-year programs at either CNA or private colleges were more likely to be working full-time than those who graduated from 2-year programs. Nearly 70% of all graduates working full-time reported that their jobs were directly related to their training. Almost 83% of graduates remained in NL at the time of the survey. NL News Release | CNA News Release | Read the full report

uOttawa tip line best left on drawing board

An editorial published in yesterday's Ottawa Citizen describes the University of Ottawa's new anonymous tip line for staff to report employee misconduct as a "classic case of a solution in search of a problem." The editorial echoes CAUT's sentiment that the tip line will foster an atmosphere of distrust. Stealth means of monitoring ill behaviour seem especially out of place at a university, observes the editorial, which points to Queen's University's now-defunct Intergroup Dialogue Program in Residence. "This is an idea that would have been best left on the drawing board." Ottawa Citizen

TD invests in uVic Aboriginal student initiatives

On Monday, the University of Victoria received a $500,000 gift from TD Bank Financial Group to fund the university's First Peoples House, a gathering place for Aboriginal students, as well as the Indigenous Student Career Transitions Program. The latter is a pilot project in which participating students attend workshops on resumé writing and interview preparation, have access to one-on-one mentors, and are offered job-shadowing opportunities. The program also helps prepare Aboriginal students interested in going on to graduate school. uVic News Release | Victoria Times-Colonist

"The start of something BIG" at MUN


Yesterday Memorial University released its Research Report 2009, as well as launched an accompanying advertising campaign bearing the tagline "This is the start of something BIG." The "big" theme is drawn from the fact that MUN's research income increased by 116.7% between 2002 and 2007, the largest growth among Canadian medical/doctoral universities. Visitors to the "BIG" microsite can click on a series of boxes bringing up text highlighting research at MUN in areas such as green chemistry, ethnomusicology, and genetics. The microsite includes videos featuring alumni stating that research at MUN is "bigger" than some international landmarks. MUN News | This is the start of something BIG

Durham College launches redesigned website


Heads-Up: June 15, 2009
Durham College's homepage is dominated by a ticking clock, counting down to June 16 (tomorrow) with the advice to "mark your calendars." There's no indication of what the date signifies -- classes are over, and convocation isn't until the 18th -- but Durham has us curious. We'll let you know in the Wednesday edition of the Top Ten!

On Monday, we gave you a heads-up about Durham College's homepage being dominated by a ticking clock that was counting down to yesterday's date. Now all is revealed -- Durham has redesigned its website. The homepage has the feel of a bulletin board, with graphics of Post-It Notes and pieces of ruled paper displaying links, as well as a series of Polaroid pictures, which visitors to the site can manipulate. The "future students" link is circled in red, and an arrow points to a tag reading "future students here," which links to a page dedicated to prospective students. Durham College website

Alcohol-related problems, deaths among US college students on the rise

According to new research from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, the number of alcohol-related deaths among American college students rose from 1,440 to 1,825 between 1998 and 2005. Researchers found that the proportion of students who reported recent binge drinking jumped from 42% to 45%, and the proportion of students admitting to drinking and driving in the past year increased from 26.5% to 29%. In collaboration with 15 colleges facing alcohol-related crisis, NIAAA scientists developed several effective prevention strategies, such as brief motivational interviews and one-on-one counselling programs for students who violate alcohol and drug policy violations. NIAA News Release