Top Ten

October 24, 2011

Toronto Star inaccurate in report on York U employee termination

Contrary to a Toronto Star article, the dismissal of York University's coordinator of investigations for security, parking and transportation services is not connected to a police investigation on suspected fraud activities at the university. York U says the staff member was not the employee who came forward to inform university management about suspected fraud activities, and that he was also not responsible for any aspect of the investigation. Toronto Star

WLU reveals new visual identity

Wilfrid Laurier University unveiled Friday its new logo, in which the name "Laurier" is written in sans serif script. Punctuated by a maple leaf, the tagline "Inspiring Lives" is a reference to the university's vision statement: "Inspiring lives of leadership and purpose." The new logo will be used in variations on letterhead, documents, clothing, and memorabilia at all of WLU's campuses. Depending on purpose, the leaf and the name can have different colours, but the style will stay the same. Brantford Expositor | The Cord (student newspaper)

Algonquin College celebrates new campus in Perth

Friday marked the official opening of Algonquin College's new main campus of the Heritage Institute in Perth, Ontario. The campus will accommodate about 40% more students in its 42,000-square-foot footprint. Built to target LEED-Gold standards, the campus features meeting rooms, quiet study areas, testing spaces, a counselling office, a cafeteria, modern library facilities, a fully equipped Personal Support Worker lab, and community access areas. Algonquin College News Release

CFS presents vision for higher education in Canada

In an updated policy paper released yesterday for its lobby week, the Canadian Federation of Students calls for the implementation of a federal Post-Secondary Education Act, accompanied by a dedicated cash transfer with funding directed to restoring per capita funding to 1992 levels, reducing tuition fees to 1992 levels, and eliminating deferred maintenance at PSE institutions. Other recommendations include redirecting funds for education-related tax credits and saving schemes toward non-repayable grants, boosting the number of Canada Graduate Scholarships, and removing the funding cap on increases to the Post-Secondary Student Support Program for Aboriginal students. The CFS also recommends increasing funding by $10 million to Statistics Canada's branch for the collection and analysis of PSE statistics. CFS News Release | Public Education for the Public Good

More to be done to attract international students to New Brunswick

While efforts to attract domestic students to New Brunswick have been successful, University of New Brunswick president Eddy Campbell says there is still work to be done with regard to international recruitment. He believes Nova Scotia has put more effort into international recruitment in the past, pointing to EduNova, which promotes the mandates of Nova Scotia universities and raises the profile of the province's education and training programs. St. Thomas University president Dawn Russell says establishing a similar organization in New Brunswick might help the province attract international students. An Association of Atlantic Universities official says marketing is particularly important for New Brunswick universities, as tuition fees increase and universities in other provinces work to make themselves more attractive and accessible to students across Canada. Daily Gleaner

uRegina building support for Aboriginal students

University of Regina president Vianne Timmons says the institution is working to ensure Aboriginal students who choose the institution have all the tools and supports necessary to be successful. "Overall, we have put $500,000, this year only, into looking at moving our initiatives forward," she says. uRegina has set aside $50,000 for emergency bursaries for First Nation and Métis students, and is considering hiring an Aboriginal advocate, as suggested by the university's Aboriginal Advisory Circle. The institution also plans to increase the size and profile of its Aboriginal Student Centre. This academic year, first-term enrolment for self-declared Aboriginal students at uRegina is up by 48%. uRegina News Release | Regina Leader-Post

Time to measure what students in Canada are learning

Many post-secondary schools claim their graduates have acquired the skills attuned to today's knowledge-based economy, such as critical thinking and effective communication; however, until such claims are evidenced by measurement, "they remain untested assumptions," writes Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario president Harvey Weingarten for University Affairs. Canada lags behind the US and Europe on defining and measuring the skills and outcomes students have attained from their post-secondary education. The assessment of learning is not new, but there is an increasing need to "demonstrate the value derived from public and personal investment in higher education, using rigorous methods that would convince a skeptic," writes Weingarten. Countries across the globe are vigorously pursuing this matter, and Canada needs to be part of these international initiatives, he says. University Affairs

Surrey needs law school, says SFU prof

Surrey, the soon-to-be second largest city in BC, should have a law school, argues Tony Wilson, a lawyer and Simon Fraser University professor, in a Canadian Lawyer article. While there is a new law school at Kamloops-based Thompson Rivers University, the sizeable growth of communities south of the Fraser River and the need for more lawyers following retirements in the next decade suggest BC needs another law school, Wilson writes. He suggests there is infrastructure in place at SFU's School of Criminology that could administer a new law school, and maybe provide a third or more of the faculty. Wilson writes that a new law faculty at the university could focus in certain areas of law where it might have an academic edge, such as criminal law, cybercrime, forensic evidence, and the regulation of the Internet. Canadian Lawyer

StFX business school earns CIM accreditation

The Canadian Institute of Management has awarded St. Francis Xavier University's Gerald Schwartz School of Business its national accreditation designation. StFX is the first institution in Nova Scotia and the second in Atlantic Canada to hold this distinction. "It puts us a step above," says the dean of business, adding that from the perspective of StFX students, the accreditation offers easier access to post-graduation certification. StFX News

Nearly half of Ontario students surveyed feel pressured to complete high school in 4 years

According to a new survey by the Ontario Student Trustees' Association, 47.3% of responding students said they feel pressured to complete secondary school in 4 years. Of the students who commented on this question, many said the pressure comes from their parents, friends, and a stereotype that students who take an extra year are somehow inferior. 39.3% of responding parents said their child feels pressured to finish high school in 4 years. The parents who said there is pressure believe it comes from the school their child attends, teachers, guidance counsellors, and society in general. OSTA News Release | 2011 Ontario Student and Parent Survey