Top Ten

September 25, 2012

uAlberta psychiatry chair facing sexual misconduct allegations resigns

Dr. Claudio Soares, a psychiatrist recently hired to lead the University of Alberta's psychiatry department, has resigned in the midst of misconduct claims coming from Ontario. Soares was to assume his position at uAlberta on September 1, but was placed on leave before he could start due to the revelation that he was under investigation by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario for allegedly having an inappropriate relationship with a female patient. It is alleged that Soares had a sexual relationship with a female patient between November 2007 and May 2009 while working in a Hamilton, Ontario clinic. At the time, Soares was a professor at McMaster University. None of the allegations have been proven. In a written statement issued Monday, a spokeswoman for uAlberta's Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry said that Soares had resigned from his position, effective immediately. The spokeswoman did not say whether the university plans to review its hiring procedures. Edmonton Journal | Canadian Press

Canada needs more university grads, says AUCC

Canada's economy could be in trouble if universities do not start producing more graduates from all disciplines, including the arts and humanities, says the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada. UBC president and AUCC chair Stephen Toope and AUCC president Paul Davidson contend that arts and humanities graduates, as well as STEM graduates, are and will continue to be in high demand by employers. Toope says AUCC's call for more university graduates is less about competition within the PSE sector and more about making Canada globally competitive. The majority of new jobs created in Canada in the next decade will require some kind of PSE credential and Toope just wants universities to get their share. "If we just sink all of our investments right now into trades education, we're going to find five years from now we're going to have a bunch of people with no projects to work on because no one's doing the planning, no one's doing the engineering design, no one's the entrepreneur that actually creates the opportunities," Toope says. AUCC also wants Canadian schools to ramp up co-op education or internship programs. Ottawa Citizen

RDC launches new 5-year strategic plan

Red Deer College has released a new 5-year strategic plan titled "RDC 2017: A Learner-Centred Future." The plan declares that the RDC of 2017 will be a comprehensive PSE institution in central Alberta with an academic reputation that positions the college as of one of the top PSE schools in the province offering certificates, diplomas, advanced skills training, and degrees. Goals include building a learner-centred culture, identifying and expanding clear learner pathways and career maps, and increasing the participation of underrepresented groups through increased engagement and support. "RDC will no longer be Alberta's best kept secret," says president Joel Ward. "We have always strived to deliver the best education possible and this plan ensures that we remain on that course and will be the post-secondary institution of choice for learners." RDC News Release | Strategic Plan

Report explores BC's efforts to attract Aboriginal people to the trades

The BC Industry Training Authority has released a report on the progress of BC's efforts to attract Aboriginal people to the trades in the province. The report observes that over the past 5 years, the number of Aboriginal people participating in trades training at public PSE institutions in BC had doubled to more than 1,200 in each of the past 2 years. The ITA attributes this success to partnerships with the provincial and federal governments, programs such as the Canada-BC Labour Market Agreement, and the ideas and partnerships First Nations and Aboriginal agencies in BC have established with educators, employers, and industry. The report outlines the accomplishments of the ITA's Aboriginal Initiatives, and what the authority does next to continue this growth. ITA will continue to implement and refine its Aboriginal Initiatives to further reduce obstacles Aboriginal people face in terms of successful entry into the trades. ITA News Release | Report

Despite legal agreement, Ryerson drops plans to reinstall neon Sam the Record Man sign

Ryerson University is looking at a variety of alternatives to rehanging the neon sign that once glowed over Sam the Record Man on Toronto's Yonge Street. Ryerson bought the property in 2007, complete with a legal agreement that the neon sign would be featured as part of the university's new Student Learning Centre; however, the sign was not visible in centre designs unveiled last year. Having been sitting in pieces in an off-campus warehouse since 2008, the sign is in disrepair and it would cost an estimated $250,000 to restore and remount the sign. Alternatives being studied include a plaque marking the spot where the record store once stood, or including a nod to the original sign as part of the entranceway into the new centre. Any outcome of negotiations between Ryerson and the City of Toronto would then go to a city council vote. If council votes to reinstate the sign, the university is prepared to do so. Speculation about the sign's fate follows the death of store founder Sam Sniderman on Sunday. In expressing condolences, Ryerson president Sheldon Levy emphasized how proud the institution was to be developing the new student centre on the former store's property. Ryerson President's Statement | Toronto Star | National Post | Canadian Press

Record enrolment at Niagara College

Niagara College will have record enrolment numbers for the 2012-13 school year, with more than 10,000 students expected to study at the institution this year. Niagara College welcomed 4,900 first-year students this fall, an increase of more than 10% compared to the fall 2011 term. Full-time enrolment has risen to 8,997 students -- an 8.4% increase over last year. When combined with ESL and apprenticeship enrolments, along with projections for winter semester spots, total enrolment will top 10,000 for the first time in Niagara College's history. Niagara College News Release

NSCC Pilikan House a learning tool for residential construction students

Last week the Nova Scotia Community College's Annapolis Valley campus opened Pilikan House, an innovative learning tool equipped with the latest in energy-efficient technologies. The house serves as a demonstration site on campus for residential construction students to learn first-hand about the changing methods in the industry and how professionals are able to incorporate sustainability in the way they do things. The name Pilikan comes from the Mi'kmaw words for "new house." Suggested by a former student, the name was selected to describe the modern, "green" learning technologies incorporated into the building. The R-2000 certified facility has more than 30 monitoring and control points used to track energy consumption. NSCC News Release

uWindsor to run STEM camp for Aboriginal youth

A new University of Windsor program to encourage Aboriginal youth to pursue STEM-related careers will offer local grade school students field trips, experiments, and lectures from faculty members, current science students, and Aboriginal instructors. The 4Winds Science Technology Engineering Math (STEM) and Beginning Time Teachings Aboriginal Youth Science Camp, for students in Grades 6 through 8, will run Saturdays on campus. "Most Aboriginal students are not choosing those subjects, and we hope to encourage them to pursue postsecondary education and look further into the hard sciences," says the coordinator of uWindsor's Aboriginal Education Centre. Camp topics will present STEM subjects in the context of indigenous knowledge and culture in the areas of food, health, shelter, and technology. uWindsor Daily News

Campaign encourages Prince George students to consider trades

Initiatives Prince George, School District 57, and College of New Caledonia have launched a campaign to make youth in Prince George, BC aware of the excellent career opportunities available in trades. The "Trades: It's a Smart Move" campaign was developed in partnership with private industry sponsors, who are looking to hire skilled workers now and in the future. "We hope to drive home the fact that trades provide an excellent career path to high paying jobs and mobility," says a CNC official. "This message is aimed not only at students, but key influencers in their lives, such as parents, teachers and counsellors." The campaign is built largely around posters to be placed in every secondary school in Prince George, and includes a social media component. The campaign began in the summer as the school district looked to private industry to help increase CNC trades enrolment and ultimately address local labour shortages. CNC News Release

MUN Teaching and Learning Community develops new website

Memorial University's Teaching and Learning Community (TLC) has unveiled a new website that celebrates positive and inspirational teaching and learning experiences from both students and educators and gives the MUN community the opportunity to join the conversation about teaching and learning. The site features information about the TLC's purpose and projects, as well as links to resources for students and educators. Members of the MUN community can share their stories about effective teaching and learning in posts published on the site. The site also includes links to the TLC's social media platforms. MUN News | Teaching and Learning at Memorial