Top Ten

January 28, 2010

uWinnipeg ordered to pay nearly $9 million to pension plan members

A Manitoba pension commission has ruled that the University of Winnipeg must pay $8.8 million to over 600 current and retired staff over the next few months. In order to do so, uWinnipeg had to take out a 40-year loan, which will end up costing $24 million once it has been paid off. In 1999, uWinnipeg and its employees identified a pension surplus which they agreed to share. The surplus was wiped out in the market crash after 9/11, and staff took legal action to try to force the school to continue paying the money. Winnipeg Free Press | CBC

uCalgary ponders tuition hikes for professional programs

The University of Calgary is taking advantage of a one-time offer from the Alberta government to apply for increases in base tuition amounts in certain programs. University officials are proposing tuition hikes of up to 47% in professional programs next year, with targeted faculties being engineering, law, business, and medicine. A uCalgary official says the proposed increases would bring tuition in line with competitor institutions, and ease the financial burden on the school. Some students interviewed by the Calgary Herald say the proposed tuition hikes could damage uCalgary's reputation, force students to switch to other schools, and spur protest on campus. Calgary Herald

Ontario college union turns down "final offer"

The union representing instructors at Ontario colleges has rejected management's "final offer." The College Compensation and Appointments Council is asking OPSEU to hold a faculty vote on the offer. A union spokesman says OPSEU would ask its members to vote on an offer only if union officials supported it. "We cannot recommend this final offer because it avoids the real issues." The union would like to resume negotiations with management. In a vote earlier this month, 57% of college faculty approved a strike mandate. College Compensation and Appointments Council Bulletin | Globe and Mail

AFMC unveils vision for medical education in Canada

Yesterday the Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada released The Future of Medical Education in Canada: A Collective Vision for MD Education, a report designed as an action-oriented mandate for changes in the way physicians are educated in Canada. The report recommends medical faculties enhance admissions processes to include the assessment of key values and personal characteristics, as well as cognitive abilities, of future doctors. In terms of the curriculum, medical education should focus on broadly-based generalist content, including family medicine. To enable the 10 recommendations listed in the report, medical faculties should review and realign existing accreditation standards, increase understanding and use of technology, and give priority to faculty development. AFMC News Release | Read the report

AUCC releases guidebook for recruiting Indian students

The Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada released this week a report on good practices on the recruitment of students from India. The report includes profiles of SMU, McGill, uWindsor, SFU, and MUN and their approaches to recruitment in India. The report states the fact that Canadian institutions are generally not well known in India has affected all institutions' recruitment practices in the nation. The recruitment process is further complicated by the potential for fraud in applications coming from India. A "sophisticated approach" is needed when it comes to recruitment efforts in India, the guidebook notes. "Considerable investment of resources is needed from the earliest stage of marketing to the screening for admission and for counselling through the study permit process." Read the guidebook

Fleming completes master plan for Peterborough campus

Fleming College recently completed a master plan for its Sutherland campus in Peterborough. Among the strategies identified in the plan is emphasizing the "clearing in the woods" character of the campus core by reforesting the areas west of Brealey Woods and around residences, and developing low-maintenance flowering meadows in existing open fields. The plan suggests a long-term objective of purchasing private properties on the east side of Dobbin Road. Fleming's president says the planning process has allowed the school to fully integrate plans for the proposed Kawartha Skilled Trades Institute into its longer-term strategies. Designs for the institute were presented to Fleming's board of governors Wednesday. Fleming News | Peterborough Examiner | Read the master plan

Canadore proposes new residence

Canadore College is planning to construct a new residence to accommodate more out-of-town students. The college is considering an expansion of its existing apartment-style residence to include about 200 new beds. Canadore's campus life director will create a business case for the proposed new residence to be presented to the school's board of governors. The director says a new residence is needed due to a shortage of student housing in North Bay, whose vacancy rate has hovered between 1% and 2% in recent years. North Bay Nugget

UBC leading Canadian school in CASE District VIII competition

The recipients of CASE's 2010 District VIII Communication Awards have been announced, and the University of British Columbia is the top winner in Canada with 12 awards (1 grand gold, 2 golds, 5 silvers, and 4 bronzes). Following close behind is uCalgary with 10 awards (4 golds, 2 silvers, 4 bronzes). NAIT picked up 7 awards (2 grand golds, 1 gold, 3 silvers, 1 bronze), and uAlberta received 6 (1 grand gold, 2 silvers, 3 bronzes). uManitoba earned a silver and a bronze, and SAIT picked up a gold. Mount Royal, uLethbridge, uSask, and UFV each received a bronze. Yesterday's Top Ten mentioned the winners of CASE's 2010 District II Accolades Awards. List of 2010 Communications Award winners | NAIT News Release

OVC to be featured on W-5

The University of Guelph's Ontario Veterinary College will be the subject of this Saturday's broadcast of CTV's W-5. The episode will focus on cancer research at the vet college and explain how treating cancer in animals can assist efforts to understand the disease in humans. The segment follows up on a W-5 episode that aired last spring, which took viewers behind the scenes of OVC's animal cancer centre. In 2004, W-5 featured the college in a documentary about its teaching hospital. UoGuelph Campus Bulletin

NL expands internship opportunities for post-secondary students

Through an investment under the Newfoundland and Labrador government's youth retention and attraction strategy, more post-secondary students across the province will have access to work-term placements and internships for the current academic term. The funding also includes a one-time allocation to expand work-term opportunities in the private and public sectors for engineering students at Memorial University. The province has also committed to creating more internship opportunities for interested students and organizations through the Small Enterprise Co-operative Assistance Placement Program. NL News Release