Top Ten

January 18, 2011

Concordia looks to former president to lead institution

Concordia University's board of governors announced Monday it has recommended Frederick Lowy as interim president of the institution. Lowy served as president of Concordia from 1995 until 2005, and was the last in the position to complete a full term. If his candidacy is approved, Lowy could take up his post before the end of the month. Concordia's faculty association says the departures of Claude Lajeunesse and Judith Woodsworth from the position as president in recent years, instigated by the board and resulting in significant severance packages, has tarnished the institution's reputation and eroded the university community's morale. In order to resolve the "current crisis," the faculty association adopted several motions Monday, including one calling for the resignation of the board of governors' chair and vice-chairs. Concordia News | Montreal Gazette | Globe and Mail | CBC | CUFA

Postscript: Jan 24, 2011
Concordia's board of governors announced Friday it has voted unanimously to appoint Dr. Frederick H. Lowy as the institution's president on an interim basis following the departure of president Judith Woodsworth in December. Lowy was Concordia's president and vice-chancellor from 1995 to 2005. The board chairman says Lowy's "extensive interest in the university and its culture will assure a smooth transition and provide continuity and stability during the search for a new president." Concordia News

Second uWindsor union votes in favour of strike action

CUPE Local 1001 is the second union at the University of Windsor to vote for a strike in a week. The union comprises over 300 full- and part-time foodservices, housekeeping, grounds, and maintenance workers. A meeting to report on the progress of negotiations resulted in a vote with 93% of members in support of a strike mandate for the bargaining committee. Last week, members of CUPE Local 1393, which represents a wide range of uWindsor employees, voted 83% in favour of a strike. CUPE News

Algoma U support staff approve strike mandate

The members of the union representing administrative and support staff at Algoma University have voted 96% in favour of taking strike action if necessary to reach their contract goals. The union is seeking a pay hike equal to the 3% boost in wages Algoma U professors pocket in this contract year. The university and the union are turning to conciliation to try to reach a new contract. OSSTF News | Algoma U News Release | QMI Agency

95% of Maritime university graduates satisfied with teaching quality, survey finds

According to a new survey, 57% of Maritime university graduates who completed their first degree in 2007 said they were satisfied with the quality of teaching, with a further 38% saying they were very satisfied. 34% of respondents thought their program developed their skills of independent and critical thinking to some extent, while an additional 62% thought these skills were developed to a great extent. The employment rate of Class of 2007 first degree holders is down 9 percentage points compared to that of 2003 graduates 2 years after graduation. 83% of first degree holders said their university education was worth the time invested, while 70% said it was worth the financial investment. MPHEC News Release | Read the report

Carleton develops new distance learning program

Monday marked the formal launch of the Carleton University OnLine (CUOL) Distance and Flexible Learning Program. CUOL will provide Carleton with the ability to extend its reach and attract new students at a time when the traditional demographic makeup of university students is forecast to decline. For over 30 years, Carleton has offered distance education through its CUTV program, where courses are delivered in a variety of methods, including a local digital TV channel. Carleton News

ACAD launches recruitment portal

On Monday, the Alberta College of Art + Design unveiled its new recruitment portal designed as an online home for emerging artists and designers to find out what becoming an ACAD student is all about. The microsite features video tours of campus studios, interviews with faculty, alumni, and students, and photo galleries showcasing the experience of being a student at ACAD. Visitors to the portal are invited to sign up for live chats with admissions recruiters, join the school's Facebook and Twitter communities, and view additional content about ACAD on YouTube. ACAD News Release |

uWinnipeg introduces baseball program

The University of Winnipeg announced Monday it is adding baseball to its family of Wesmen sports teams. Student-athletes in the baseball program will start classes and training in September, with a full slate of games beginning in spring 2012. uWinnipeg president Lloyd Axworthy says the addition of a baseball program is another example of how the university is meeting the recommendations of the President's Task Force on Athletics and Academics. One of the task force's mandates was to broaden and deepen the university's athletic programs, both from a community and competitive perspective. uWinnipeg News Release

Langara launches new sports logo contest

Langara College is on the hunt for a new logo to represent the Falcons athletic department following a recent college-wide rebrand. Students, professional graphic designers, and artists are invited to submit their best designs by March 1. The winner will receive $1,000 toward tuition at Langara or an iPad. The top design will be immortalized on all Falcons' uniforms, apparel, merchandise, gear, and promotion materials. Langara News

Express bus service considered for Mount Royal

Mount Royal University, the only major post-secondary institution in Calgary without LRT service, may get 2 bus rapid transit lines in the next few years under a plan city councillors will consider today. Under the proposal, one express-style bus route for Mount Royal would ferry passengers between 2 LRT stations once the C-Train extension opens in December 2012, while the other route would serve the university from downtown, likely to begin within the next 3 or 4 years. The president of Mount Royal's student association says the 2 lines are a "good step forward," but hopes the LRT does eventually reach the institution. Calgary Herald

New book argues US institutions failing at undergraduate education

A book released Tuesday suggests that for many students, 4 years of undergraduate classes make little difference in their ability to synthesize knowledge and put complex ideas to paper. Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses cites data from student surveys and transcript analyses to show that many students have minimal classwork expectations, and then tracks the academic gains (or stagnation) of 2,300 students of traditional college age studying at a range of 4-year institutions. For example, the book reports that 36% of the students saw no statistically significant gains in their College Learning Assessment scores between their freshman and senior years. The book is already drawing critics, who say the analysis falls short in its assessments of certain teaching and learning methods. The Chronicle of Higher Education (free access) | Inside Higher Ed