Top Ten

October 20, 2011

Brandon U students form tent city on campus amid faculty strike

Brandon University students have set up a series of tents on campus and vow to remain there until the faculty strike is settled. The "Occupy the Courtyard" rally began Wednesday afternoon, and students "won't leave until there's a resolution," says the student union president. The Canadian Association of University Teachers will be in Brandon today to present the faculty association with a $1-million line of credit to mitigate the financial strain of being on strike. In a recent communiqué to the institutional community, Brandon U says it and the conciliator are available to continue conciliation today and Saturday, but through the conciliator the faculty association has informed the university they will not meet again until Monday. Brandon U Strike Information | Winnipeg Free Press

New index on wellbeing observes positive education trends

Yesterday the University of Waterloo-based Canadian Index of Wellbeing (CIW) released a comprehensive composite index to measure the overall wellbeing of the country. One of the domains assessed is education, which improved by 18.7% between 1994 and 2008. During this time period, parental socio-economic status became less important to student performance, while parental education remained important. According to the report, students whose parents have completed secondary school or less are just 70% as likely to attend PSE as students with parents who have completed university. Between 1994 and 2008, the percentage of Canadians ages 20 to 24 who reported completing high school rose by 5.8%, and university graduation rates among 25- to 64-year-olds increased by 47.4%. uWaterloo News Release | Read the report

uCalgary celebrates opening of Taylor Family Digital Library

Yesterday marked the grand opening of the University of Calgary's Taylor Family Digital Library. One of the most digitally progressive academic libraries in North America, the facility features a library, art gallery, archives, rare collections, a student access centre, and the latest digital tools for learning and research. As part of the project, uCalgary also created the Taylor Quadrangle and constructed its first High Density Library, which houses about 60% of the institution's current book and journal collections, on top of a significant portion of archival holdings. The entire project was funded by the Taylor family and all 3 levels of government at a cost of $205 million. uCalgary News Release

UNB receives $5-million gift to launch entrepreneurship and innovation centre

University of New Brunswick alumni Gururaj (Desh) Deshpande and Gerry Pond have donated $5 million to their alma mater to establish the Pond-Deshpande Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, which will facilitate collaboration among entrepreneurs, young companies, and UNB students, faculty, and alumni. The centre will work with the university's existing innovation and entrepreneurship programs to develop courses and mentorship opportunities for students, as well as help new entrepreneurs translate their ideas into companies, products, or services. UNB News

CMU establishes business school with $6.5-million gift

On Wednesday, Winnipeg's Canadian Mennonite University launched the Redekop School of Business, made possible through a donation from the Redekop family of BC. The family has pledged a minimum of $6.5 million and potentially up to $7.5 million to establish the business school. CMU will offer a BBA (4-year, with a 5-year co-op option) with majors in Business Management, Not-for-Profit Management, Accounting, and Human Resources Management, as well as a BA in Business and Organizational Administration. CMU News Release

uOttawa aims to be among Canada's top 5 research universities by 2020

This is one of the goals presented in the University of Ottawa's new strategic plan, "Destination 20/20." Under the objective of a "rich, inspiring student experience," uOttawa will promote the quality of teaching as part of its institutional culture, ensure all first-year students are offered personal advice and mentorship, and boost Aboriginal student recruitment efforts and services. As per its "culture of discovery" objective, the institution has set a graduate-enrolment target of 18% of the student population by 2020. With bilingualism one of its defining characteristics, uOttawa aims to have one-third of its students be Francophones. Between now and 2020, the university plans to double the number of international graduate students, increase the number of international undergraduates by 50%, and double the number of students participating in mobility programs. Today's launch of the strategic plan coincides with that of the Centre for Global and Community Engagement, a hub for information on regional, national, and international volunteer opportunities. uOttawa News Release | Destination 20/20 website | Destination 20/20 document | Centre for Global and Community Engagement website

HEQCO report offers recommendations on use of teaching-stream faculty at universities

Exploring the use of teaching-stream faculty (TSF), a new report commissioned by the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario finds the perceived benefits to this approach to be a dedicated focus on teaching and the needs of students, as well as the secure employment of professors wanting to commit to teaching. Perceived disadvantages include a two-tier stigma within the university because of the high value put on research, the need for faculty to conduct scholarly work to ensure the quality of the student experience, and striking the appropriate balance among teaching, research, and service. Among the report's recommendations to universities on expanding the use of TSF positions are being sensitive to individual contexts when introducing such a role, value the work and role of TSF, and clarifying expectations for TSF research. Research Summary | Full Report

Sault Ste. Marie contributes to Sault College capital campaign

Following last week's launch of Sault College's $6-million "Inspiring Growth" capital campaign, the City of Sault Ste. Marie presented a $1-million cheque in support of the institution's campus redevelopment initiatives. The funding from the municipality will be distributed over a 4-year period and will directly contribute to the new student health and wellness centre. Sault College News Release

Olds College fund to support ideas aligned with Comprehensive Institutional Plan

Alberta-based Olds College is inviting students, staff, and alumni to submit a proposal for up to $100,000 as an initiative to celebrate the institution's centennial in 2013 and acquire innovate and creative ideas that align with the goals and outcomes outlined in Olds College's Comprehensive Institutional Plan. The Common Issues Team will select the top 3 candidates on November 11, 2011, after which point the college community can vote on their choice. The winner will be announced on December 9, 2011. Olds College $100,000 Centennial Innovation Fund | Comprehensive Institutional Plan 2011-2014

uToronto among top 10 institutions for arts and humanities in THE ranking

The University of Toronto is the top-ranked Canadian institution in the Times Higher Education's top 50 arts and humanities universities ranking, released yesterday. uToronto placed 10th overall. The other Canadian institutions to make this list are McGill University (21) and the University of British Columbia (28). uToronto News Release | THE Top 50 Arts and Humanities Universities 2011-2012