Top Ten

April 16, 2015

Joyce Foundation gives $5 M to UNB to create student bursaries

The University of New Brunswick has received $5 M from The Joyce Foundation to support students in financial need. The majority of the funding—$4.5 M—will be used to create a bursary endowment fund and the remainder will be used for UNB’s Work-Study program, which provides on-campus employment opportunities to students with financial need. The Joyce Foundation focuses its philanthropic efforts on “promoting improved and meaningful social, economic, and emotional engagement for young Canadians,” and has recently committed funds to create bursaries at St Lawrence CollegeCollege of the North Atlantic, Memorial University, and the University of WindsorUNB News

Canadian colleges to partner with India on skills development

A group of Canadian PSE institutions is planning to sign MOUs this week with India’s National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) during a visit by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. 12 institutions, including 9 colleges, will work with Indian partners in specific sectors to create and improve training opportunities for Indian youth. The Indian partners will pay the colleges for services including curriculum development, training for Indian educators, and help with accreditation systems. NSDC, a large public-private partnership that aims to develop for-profit vocational institutions, has established centres of excellence across India that will house the partnerships. Globe and Mail

NBCC discontinues nuclear medicine technology program

New Brunswick Community College has announced that it will discontinue its nuclear medicine technology program. The program had been offered as a collaborative degree/diploma program with Horizon Health Network and the University of New Brunswick Saint John. The decision was made following consultations with Horizon and UNBSJ; the partner institutions determined that, based on limited current or future job opportunities in the field, there should be no intake of new students in the program in 2015–16. NBCC said that it will honour its commitments to current students, who will be able to complete the program as planned. NBCC News Release

Confederation, Trent, FNTI sign agreement to expand opportunities

Confederation College, Trent University, and the First Nations Technical Institute have signed a 5-year MOU to formalize and extend an existing partnership. The new collaboration will create pathways for Aboriginal learners within Indigenous Studies programs across the 3 institutions. According to a news release, the formal partnership is the only one of its kind in the province. The goals of the initiative include designing, developing, and implementing academic programming and related initiatives; improving capacity in the areas of program development and delivery; and increasing input in consultations and policy development. The pathways partnership will allow Aboriginal learners to more easily transition from FNTI or Confederation to Trent; additionally, learners at Trent will gain the opportunity to learn from instructors at the other institutions. Trent News

Colleges Ontario releases annual KPI Report

84% of recent college graduates found employment within 6 months of graduation, according to Colleges Ontario's annual Key Performance Indicators (KPI) report. The report also says that 88% of employers were either satisfied or very satisfied with the college graduates they hired, that 80% of college graduates were satisfied or very satisfied with the quality of their education, and that 87% of college students felt their program gave them skills that would be useful in their future career. Loyalist College (89%) had the highest graduate employment rate, Collège Boréal (88%) had the highest graduate satisfaction rate, Sault College (89%) had the highest student satisfaction rate, and Cambrian College (96%) had the highest employer satisfaction rate. Colleges Ontario News Release | Full Report

uCalgary law faculty introduces new curriculum

Starting in September 2015, the University of Calgary’s Faculty of Law will introduce the Calgary Curriculum, an innovative approach to the teaching of law designed to give students real-world insights. The new curriculum embraces performance-based learning, requiring students to demonstrate their knowledge through in-class scenarios derived from the contemporary legal environment. According to Ian Holloway, Dean of the law school, the Calgary Curriculum places their program “at the forefront of innovation in North American legal education.” “Our goal,” continues Holloway, “is to prepare students for the legal profession they will enter, not the one we joined.” uCalgary News | Slaw | Curriculum

Firms partner to provide counselling support for international students

Morneau Shepell, a Canadian provider of employee and family assistance programs, has partnered with international insurance provider to create the International Student Support Program (ISSP). Through the program, international students will have 24/7 access to confidential, culturally relevant counselling services to help them cope with feelings of loneliness, stress, and anxiety. The program, available in more than 200 languages, is meant to complement and enhance existing community services and educational resources in order to help prevent and resolve mental health issues. It will be free for students attending institutions that register for the program. News Release

Students should attend university when they are ready, not out of obligation

In an opinion piece for University Affairs, Ralph Martin warns of the dangers of having students attend university in "a habitual manner." Martin says that students who move on from grade 12 to university simply because it is what society expects of them risk wasting their time, money, energy, and potential. He emphasizes that university is but one of many options available to graduating high school students, and that some students perform better when they enrol in university in their own time and on their own terms. With this in mind, he recommends that universities do more to accommodate the needs of life-long learners who may have additional responsibilities and obligations. University Affairs

Rock says that to foster innovation, Canada must invest in universities

Former federal Cabinet minister and current University of Ottawa President Allan Rock says that Canada is not investing enough in innovation, research, and development, and that universities could be "the centrepiece of a national strategy to overcome the performance gaps holding us back." In an op-ed for The Hill Times, Rock says that with appropriate public support and a deeper relationship with the private sector, universities will be better equipped to produce highly qualified graduates, attract international talent, conduct innovative research, and foster an entrepreneurial spirit in students. He calls on industry to work with institutions to "make the walls between us more porous" by hiring co-op students and funding student start-ups, and urges provincial and federal governments to continue to invest in PSE. The Hill Times

Corinthian Colleges fined $30 M for misrepresenting placement rates

The US Department of Education has fined Corinthian Colleges nearly $30M for the “misrepresentation of job-placement rates” at its Heald College chain. The department will also stop federal Title IV aid to 2 Heald campuses. The fine—one of the largest ever imposed by the department—may be a sign of renewed attention to for-profit colleges, which could have implications extending far beyond Corinthian. “This should be a wake-up call for consumers across the country about the abuses that can exist within the for-profit college sector,” said Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. Corinthian has already faced widespread criticism concerning the value of its degrees. Corinthian’s Everest College chain in Ontario was shut down in February. Inside Higher Ed | The Chronicle of Higher Education | Department of Education News Release