Top Ten

May 11, 2011

uAlberta receives $15-million gift for APPLE Schools program

The University of Alberta announced Tuesday a $15-million donation from alumnus Allan P. Markin to expand a program aimed at reversing poor health trends among Alberta children. The gift follows Markin's initial $5-million donation in 2008 for the Alberta Project Promoting active Living & healthy Eating in Schools (APPLE Schools), bringing his total contribution to the initiative to $20 million. By September, APPLE Schools will run in 41 provincial schools, including urban, rural, and Aboriginal schools. uAlberta ExpressNews

uMoncton professor seeks inquiry into VP selection

A Université de Moncton law professor is calling for an independent inquiry into the selection of the vice-president of student and international affairs, a newly created position at the institution. The professor applied for the job and says the process took 8 months. He says the individual appointed, a female communications professor at uMoncton, was the third choice at that point, while he was second. Arguing that the university is not respecting democracy and transparency, the law professor says he will consider legal action if the institution does not go ahead with an independent inquiry. A uMoncton spokesperson says the selection process was respected and the equity committee concluded that the gap between the communications professor and the recommended candidate was not that great. uMoncton wanted to have a woman in the position because there are too few women in the upper levels of administration, says the director of communications. CBC

NS residents paying more than fair share for higher ed, report finds

Nova Scotia students and their families are paying nearly 3 times as much for PSE as the provincial government, according to a new report from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives-Nova Scotia. The report shows the largest part of the cost for university education is not tuition fees -- it is the cost of the income students forgo while they attend university. The report's first recommendation is for the government to shelve the O'Neill report; implementing the O'Neill report recommendations would "risk creating or exacerbating the very problems for which it purports to offer solutions, and would result in an inaccessible, weakened post-secondary education system." The report recommends the province expand public investment in PSE substantially, ensure there is more public accountability and transparency within the system, and make sure funding is used as fairly, effectively, and efficiently as possible. CCPA News Release | Read the report

Queen's posts $3-million shortfall

Queen's University's board of trustees has passed the institution's 2011-12 operating budget, which reflects a $3-million deficit. Senior administration is committed to returning to balanced budgets, with 2011-12 anticipated to be the final deficit budget. To return to a balanced budget, more work must be done to reduce expenditures and increase revenues by $6 million. Significant characteristics of the university's 2011-12 to 2014-15 budget framework include extraordinary increases in legislated pension deficit special payments starting in 2011-12, limited enrolment growth as per senate-approved plans, and a 1.5% budget allocation reduction to all units. Queen's News Centre | Budget Report 2011-12

2 uLaval football players suspended for steroid use

2 Université Laval Rouge et Or football players have been suspended for 2 years after testing positive for steroid use. A second-year linebacker and a first-year offensive line player admitted their infractions once confronted with the test results and received a sanction of a 2-year period of ineligibility. Since March 31, 2010, the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport has conducted over 500 doping control tests on Canadian Interuniversity Sport football players. 14 anti-doping rule violations have been asserted, with sanctions ranging from one to 4 years for admitting to the use of performance enhancing substances, refusing testing, trafficking, and presence in a sample for banned substances. CCES News Release | Globe and Mail | Toronto Star | Montreal Gazette

Art schools envision graduates as both thinkers and makers

While students and parents increasingly question the value of a liberal education, Canada's art schools believe a broader education must be added to the specialized training they have always offered. "Liberal arts education allied with deeply focused knowledge in one area is really important," says Sara Diamond, president of OCAD University, whose name change last year follows a national trend -- NSCAD University and Emily Carr University of Art + Design have been granting degrees for decades but only became universities in 2003 and 2008, respectively. The schools argue they offer the best of both worlds -- specialized training in making and general training in thinking. Alberta College of Art + Design president Daniel Doz, whose institution is the one Canadian art school that remains a college, wonders whether the arts schools have gone the university route because there is money in research, even though students need long hours of hands-on teaching; Diamond, on the other hand, argues that undergraduates need access to researchers if they are going to learn how to think. Globe and Mail

Ontario undergraduate applications up over last year

According to May undergraduate application statistics released yesterday by the Ontario Universities' Application Centre, there are 509,663 applications this month, up from 494,417 in May 2010. Applications from high school students have risen by 1.9% from last May, totalling 392,534. Applications from non-secondary students are up by 7.3% from this time last year, totalling 117,129, the highest figure recorded for May in the last 10 years. OUAC Undergraduate Application Statistics -- May 2011

4 Canadian business schools make FT executive education rankings

On Monday, Financial Times released its 2011 rankings for international providers of open-enrolment executive education programs, as well as providers of customized programs. In the open-enrolment category, the Canadian businesses schools among the top 65 are UWO's Ivey School of Business (17), uToronto's Rotman School of Management (24), Queen's School of Business (26), and York U's Schulich School of Business (43). Rotman placed first for new skills and learning. Ivey, Schulich, Queen's, and Rotman are also listed among the top 65 providers of customized executive education programs, placing 27th, 41st, 46th, and 62nd, respectively. uToronto News | FT Executive Education Rankings 2011

uCalgary engineering school opens Centre for Project Management Excellence

On Tuesday, the University of Calgary's Schulich School of Engineering launched the Centre for Project Management Excellence, a one-stop shop for education, training, and research. Operated with the support and guidance of industry leaders, the centre will enable the expansion of the number of project management courses at the engineering school. The Centre for Project Management Excellence will also manage the delivery of programs internationally. uCalgary News

Yale offers open access to digital images of collections

Under a new "Open Access" policy, Yale University announced Tuesday it will offer free online access to digital images of millions of objects housed in its museums, archives, and libraries. The first Ivy League university to make its collections available in this manner, Yale had already made over 250,000 images available through a newly developed collective catalogue. No license will be needed for the transmission of the images and no limitations will be put on their use, allowing scholars, artists, students, and citizens worldwide to use the collections for study, publication, teaching, and inspiration. Yale News Release | Associated Press