Top Ten

July 28, 2016

McMaster receives $12M in federal funding for BEAM centre

McMaster has received a federal grant of nearly $12M for the development of its Fraunhofer Project Centre for Biomedical Engineering and Advanced Manufacturing (BEAM) research facility, to open in late 2017. Researchers at the BEAM centre aim to improve quality of life by creating new technologies for cancer treatments, eye care, and point-of-care medical devices. "Our vision here is to build Canada into a global centre for innovation," commented Innovation Minister Navdeep Bains. "Innovation will drive growth in all of our industries." The BEAM project is reportedly valued at over $33M with investments from partners, including the provincial and municipal governments. The Spec | McMaster

Changes to YK Students Financial Assistant Act widen access to grants

The Yukon government is making PSE grants available to more students through an added $376K in funding and the introduction of new regulations under the territory’s Student Financial Assistant Act. Students eligible for the YK Grant will see the maximum annual grant amount rise from $3,740 to $4,590. There is also a $1,500 airfare grant for students studying outside of the territory. Students from communities outside Whitehouse are also eligible for extra travel funding. Additionally, students can now receive a maximum lifetime amount of 170 weeks of combined financial aid from the Yukon Grant and Student Training Allowance. YK

OUSA calls for no consequences for graduates who leave Canada

Colin Aitchison and Zachary Rose of the Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance have written a rebuttal to the recent call for consequences for Ontario graduates who leave the country for work. Aitchison and Rose assert that the CCI’s argument “rests on the notion that students in Ontario graduate with an obligation to the economy - a position that is hard to defend” as it ignores “the economic benefit students bring to Ontario during their studies” and the fact that subsidies primarily aide “students with considerable financial need.” They conclude by asserting that “if Ontario employers need skilled workers, they must find ways to compete, not hamstring our graduates so they have no choice but to stay.” OUSA

Niagara to offer post-grad beekeeping program

A growing demand for skilled beekeepers worldwide has prompted Niagara College to launch a one-year Commercial Beekeeping Graduate Certificate program, the first of its kind in Eastern Canada. The 3-semester program will feature an on-campus apiary with 30 managed hives that will house approximately 50,000 bees. The program will launch in January, as the winter start will align the program with the normal annual lifecycle of the honey bee. The program has been under development for the past four years as a collaborative effort with the Ontario Beekeepers’ Association, which represents 80% of beekeepers in the province. Niagara | St Catharines Standard

A combative cabinet can benefit an institutional leader

A cabinet of differing viewpoints can be of benefit to institutional leaders, provided that institutional leaders take the time to understand the different perspectives, build strong relationships, and encourage good communication, according to Barbara McFadden Allen, Ruth Watkins, and Robin Kaler in an article for Inside Higher Ed. The authors discuss the importance of having a diverse and talented cabinet that is able to debate a leader’s decisions. They further explain that the success of these teams relies in part on the leader’s response to friction and diversity, concluding that “a successful leader can tolerate and harness the information and ideas that come from friction among the team.” Inside Higher Ed

UAlberta receives $250K donation, plans for professional master’s offerings for program

UAlberta is strengthening its Urban and Regional Planning Program with the aid of a recent $250K donation from Brookfield Residential and plans for a professional master’s program. The program uses case studies from Edmonton and the surrounding area to examine factors such as socioeconomics, land use, environmental degradation costs, and the effects of climate change. The program hopes to be able to accommodate its first cohort of professional master’s students as early as September 2016. The donation will largely go towards scholarships for undergraduate and graduate students, and will also help fund the Brookfield Residential Distinguished Visitor’s program. uAlberta

UNBC, CNC students’ priorities met by expanding bus service

The city of Prince George is responding to local postsecondary students’ requests for improved transit service by expanding bus service starting in fall 2017. Among these improvements is the decision to run buses on statutory holidays and enhance service on evenings and weekends. Improved transit was the top priority on a list prepared by the city’s Select Committee for Student Needs, followed by issues such as housing, jobs, and nightlife. Committee member and University of Northern British Columbia student Arctica Cunningham said that the lack of bus service on stat holidays is particularly frustrating, as students miss out on events. She said that the lack of transit options also impacted off-campus housing options for students. CBC

Perceived credibility of academic research affected by race, gender, says study

A recent study out of the University of British Columbia, the University of Manitoba, and Singapore Management University has found that “individuals judge researcher credibility according to their egalitarian or elitist ideologies and according to status cues including race, gender, caste, and university affiliation.” Study co-author Karl Aquiano, the Richard Poon Professor of Organizations and Society at the University of British Columbia’s Sauder School of Business, reportedly embarked on the study after numerous readers questioned  “my qualifications and my credibility to do this research … while my colleague – he’s a white male – never got anything like that.” Aquaino hopes the impact of these cues on hiring decisions in the future. Globe and Mail | Study (Subscription/Purchase Required)

John Abbott expanding Health Caravan service to isolated anglophones

A project at John Abbott College to bring health and social services to anglophones residing in isolated parts of Quebec is expanding this year. Founded last year with a four year, $20K annual grant from McGill University, the John Abbott College Health Caravan will travel more often to the Laurentians, and will also welcome police technology students to join the mix of healthcare and social services students currently participating in the project. Instructors say that students that join the caravan gain valuable hands-on experience by working with people who need assistance in various areas. Montreal Gazette

TWU law school wins accreditation battle in NS court

The Nova Social Court of Appeal upheld a decision to allow future graduates of Trinity Western University’s law school to practice in the province. The NS Barristers’ Society had refused accreditation as it argued requiring students to sign a covenant promising to abstain from sexual intimacy outside of heterosexual marriage violates the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. However, the court said that the society did not have the authority to “issue rulings whether someone in British Columbia ‘unlawfully’ violated the Human Rights Act or the charter,” and ordered the society to pay $35K in legal costs to TWU. CBC | Vancouver Sun