Top Ten

June 28, 2010

G20-related arrests made at uToronto

In a bid to quell violence at the G20 summit in Toronto, police raided the Graduate Student Union building at the University of Toronto Sunday morning, arresting about 70 people and seizing "street-type weaponry," such as bricks, rocks, and sharpened stakes. While uToronto had shut down most of its St. George campus for the duration of the summit, the university's student groups continued to operate. The GSU turned its gymnasium into a makeshift hostel to accommodate out-of-town student protesters. The Toronto Star reports that uToronto administrators are questioning graduate student leaders about why the union-run building was used to house out-of-town protesters. uToronto states that because the arrests are a police matter, it will have no further comment at this time. Globe and Mail | Associated Press | Toronto Star | Statement from uToronto

COU outlines framework for planning, funding of enrolment

A new position paper from the Council of Ontario Universities sets out provincial universities' proposals for planning and funding of enrolment changes to help the province meet a 70% PSE attainment rate. COU recommends the framework incorporate 6 guiding principles: stability; predictability; equity; accountability; simplicity; and no dislocation (meaning schools should be protected from large and sudden decreases in revenue due to changes to funding/planning mechanisms). The paper states the proposed approach will strengthen incentives for growth to meet Ontario's objectives, and reduce risk and increase certainty for both the province and the universities. Read the position paper

York U releases safety audit report

A York University committee and an external agency have submitted their final report on a campus safety audit, which makes a number of recommendations pertaining to York U's social environment, physical environment, and security services. Recommendations include creating a comprehensive violence prevention policy to target and address violence against women, hate incidents, and systemic discrimination; increasing security staffing levels to improve campus patrols and response time to calls; and conducting a climate survey on campus for students, faculty, and staff at the end of 5 years. Over the 2-year period of the audit process, York U has worked hard to enhance security measures, says president Mamdouh Shoukri, which include the establishment of the residence watch officer program and more staff devoted to campus escort programs. Y-File | Read the report

Trent approves new mission statement, strategic directions

Trent University recently approved a new mission statement, which declares that over the next 5 years Trent will prepare students to make significant contributions to an increasingly complex world, remain at the forefront of Indigenous education and scholarship, and foster sustainability on its campuses and in all aspects of its work. The university has also endorsed a report outlining strategic directions, with focus on graduate studies, internal/external partnerships, research, student engagement, teaching and learning, and Trent in Oshawa. Trent News Release

uSask changes law-degree designation to JD

The University of Saskatchewan's College of Law is joining several law schools in Canada in bestowing on its graduates Juris Doctor (JD) degrees instead of Bachelors of Law (LLB). A mail and e-mail survey of uSask law alumni revealed majority support for the change, and faculty supported the change unanimously. Adopting the JD designation will not affect college admission criteria, and alumni will have the option of changing their law degree to JD retroactively. uSask On Campus News

BCIT civil engineering degree receives national accreditation

British Columbia Institute of Technology's 4-year civil engineering degree program has been granted accreditation by the Canadian Engineering Accreditation Board, making it the first time the board has approved accreditation for a non-university civil engineering program. BCIT's program has received full accreditation for 3 years, confirming the program's acceptance within the professional community while allowing graduates to directly apply to their professional association for registration. BCIT News Release

NIC experiences enrolment boom

According to a report from North Island College, enrolment at the institution in English, Humanities, and Social Sciences are up 17%, 29%, and 16%, respectively. Many other areas of study have seen increased growth, particularly in Early Childhood Care and Education, Health, and Human Services. One area which saw a decline in growth was Trades, Foundation and Apprenticeship, a trend attributed to a drop in funding for that area of study. Comox Valley Echo

TRU recognizes students' international experience on transcript

Thompson Rivers University has introduced a new Global Competency distinction that will become part of the official transcript of graduating students, formally recognizing international skills and experience that students acquire during their time at TRU. Eligible qualifying categories include foreign language study or other course work with a distinct cross-cultural or international focus, and participation in student exchange programs, field schools, and international volunteer opportunities. TRU says the Global Competency qualification reflects both its commitment to global citizenship and capacity to establish university-wide internationalization initiatives. TRU News

MHC finds "face" of college

Medicine Hat College has chosen Saskatchewan native Ryan Carlson as the "face" of the institution, the result of a search through a video contest inviting new and returning students to express why they should be the "Face of MHC." For the 2010-11 academic year, Carlson, who begins his studies at MHC this fall, will work with college staff to enhance communications with current and prospective students. He will document his college experience through a blog and self-produced videos posted on MHC's website. In winning the contest, Carlson will receive free tuition and residence accommodation for a year, as well as a laptop, video camera, and college merchandise. MHC News Release

Free college application week in Indiana "misguided"

To get more Indiana high school seniors to apply to state post-secondary institutions, the Indiana Higher Education Commission launched its "College Go!" initiative late last summer, which allowed students to apply to state schools for free during one week in October. Some enrolment officials say the well-intended program was misguided and caused problems -- staff wasted hundreds of hours sorting through applications, many of them incomplete, and trying to follow up with students who had no intention of attending college. Changes will be made to the initiative this fall, with an earlier date for the free application week and less pressure on colleges to waive application fees. Associated Press