Top Ten

May 11, 2012

NIC to close satellites in Bella Coola, Gold River

North Island College's satellite education centres in Bella Coola and Gold River are slated to close on June 20 as part of what NIC calls "a new model for educational delivery in our remote communities," states CUPE BC in a news release. "The last thing these economically hard-hit communities need is reduced access to job training and post secondary education,” says the president of CUPE BC. "We are leaving British Columbians in remote communities out in the cold at a time when they most need opportunities for quality education programs close to home." CUPE BC News Release

13 jobs cut in organizational changes at Canadore

In August, Canadore will launch a renewed service delivery model that "better meets students’ needs in areas such as financial aid, admissions and mental health by creating more robust service delivery standards and frameworks." The organizational changes will result in 6 support staff, 5 academic staff, and 2 administrative employees leaving the college over the next 3 months. Canadore president George Burton says the job cuts were not a result of the institution's deficit, which currently sits at $1.6 million. "The small deficit wasn't the primary driver, rather we're evolving our service delivery model," Burton says. This is the second round of job cuts this year, reports the North Bay Nugget; 9 staff members lost their jobs in January. Canadore News Release | North Bay Nugget

CLASSE members reject agreement with Quebec on tuition fees

Delegates to the student organization CLASSE have overwhelmingly rejected the tentative deal reached earlier this month with the Quebec government. CLASSE says the protest against tuition fee increases is far from over and is encouraging the continuation of strikes and pressure tactics. The plans include a large demonstration to take place on May 22. A CLASSE spokesman says the group is ready to resume negotiations, but it wants the next round of talks to focus specifically on tuition fee increases rather than on related matters, such as university management. The president of FECQ says his group, which represents CÉGEP students, has noted a lack of enthusiasm toward the deal, based on the low student participation in meetings held on the issue. FEUQ, which represents university students, was expected to vote Friday afternoon on the deal, once the member associations had all been consulted. CTV

Canada places third in new ranking of national PSE systems

Canada has placed third, behind only the US and Sweden, in a new ranking of national PSE systems, based on research into data from 48 nations. Organized by Universitas 21, a global research network of 24 universities and colleges, the ranking is based on 20 different measures that researchers believe are critical to what makes a "good" PSE system. The measures are grouped under 4 categories: resources (investment by government and private sector); output (research and its impact, as well as the production of an educated workforce which meets labour market needs); connectivity (international networks and collaboration which protects a system against insularity); and environment (government policy and regulation, diversity and participation opportunities). Canada's position in third overall is based primarily on placing first for resources and third for outputs. Universitas 21 News | University Affairs

Report recommends review of medical education to address growing demand for doctors in NS

A new report suggests Nova Scotia will need nearly 200 more doctors over the next decade to meet the demands of its aging population. Noting that Nova Scotia relies on Dalhousie University's medical school to produce a large number of the province's doctors, the report recommends a review of medical education so that future graduates and residents meet the growing need for family physicians and generalists. The Nova Scotia government plans to work with Dal's medical school to increase the number of family doctors it trains. The school's senior associate dean says the report will help it "better link" physician supply with the population's need. Several efforts are underway at the medical school to encourage students to work in rural settings. NS News Release | Canadian Press | Report

Donors give to uAlberta in record numbers

Donors are giving to the University of Alberta in record numbers thanks to a boost in first-time donations. Approximately 21,700 individuals, foundations, and corporations gave to the institution in 2011-12, including 5,700 first-time donors. $162.7 million in philanthropic support was recorded this fiscal year -- an all-time high in uAlberta's history. Donations came from a record number of nearly 20,000 alumni and individual donors. uAlberta also benefited from a significant increase in donations from the 12,800 alumni who gave, representing a 5-year high. uAlberta News

Report calls for changes in apprenticeship and training practices in forest products sector

A new report from the Forest Products Sector Council suggests current apprenticeship and training practices need to change in order to keep up with an impending skilled worker shortage. Stakeholders agree on the benefits of apprenticeship, such as a higher quality of work and higher wages, but with just 40% of sector employers continuing to invest in apprenticeship training, participation rates may be lower than needed to replace retiring employees. At the professional level, the report highlights the declining enrolment in university forestry programs leading to a professional forestry designation, and suggests key HR shortages will emerge should this trend continue. FPSC News Release | Report

Lambton College completes "Inspiring the Future" campaign

Lambton College's "Inspiring the Future" fundraising campaign has reached its target, closing out at $5,087,495. The 5-year campaign was completed in just 3-and-a-half years and included support that will strengthen and expand on existing programs, invest in leading-edge teaching facilities, and develop new programs and services. The campaign will enhance opportunities for all students, as well as provide additional options for individuals looking to pursue career upgrading or retraining. Lambton College News

$2-million gift to York U supports entrepreneurial programs for STEM majors

York University alumnus Douglas Bergeron and his wife Sandra have donated $2 million to York University to establish the Bergeron Entrepreneurs in Science & Technology (BEST) Program. The gift will support newly created entrepreneurial programs and initiatives focused on STEM majors. The donation will be matched by funding from other sources and is part of York U's Engineering expansion initiative. Y-File

MUN postdoctoral fellows unionize

Following a recent certification vote ballot count by the Newfoundland and Labrador Labour Relations Board, nearly 60 postdoctoral fellows who work at Memorial University will form a separate bargaining unit of Lecturers' Union of MUN (LUMUN), a directly chartered local of the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC). "This victory opens the door for another group of academic workers at Memorial to negotiate the terms and conditions of their employment," says a PSAC representative. LUMUN represents part-time academics who teach credit courses on a per-course basis. PSAC News Release