Top Ten

August 24, 2016

NLC to construct new skilled trades training centre with $33M funding injection

Northern Lights College is set to replace a World War II-era structure with a new skilled trades training centre, thanks to a combined $33M investment from the federal and provincial governments. The project will prepare Indigenous learners for careers in the skilled trades by increasing apprenticeship enrolment and addressing barriers to student success. “There is a consistent demand for well‑trained, qualified tradespeople throughout the northeast,” said NLC President Bryn Kulmatycki. “A new trades training facility will help Northern Lights train exceptionally prepared, job‑ready graduates who are ready to serve in our local communities in a range of sectors.” Canada | NationTalk | Dawson Creek Mirror | NLC

Mohawk improving access for students with ON investment in City School

Mohawk College plans to improve access to PSE for Indigenous students, students with disabilities, at-risk youth, and adults in transition in Hamilton, thanks to a $1.6M provincial investment in the college’s City School. Mohawk plans to use the funding to renovate existing City School Learning Hubs and pilot new City School Mobile learning facilities in priority neighbourhoods that will be selected with guidance from Hamilton’s Neighbourhood Action Strategy. “The Government of Ontario’s $1.6 million investment in Mohawk’s pioneering City School initiative will put a college education within reach of more people than ever before in our community,” said Mohawk President Ron McKerlie. ON

Get rid of deadlines to improve student wellbeing, work quality, writes CHE contributor

“The conventional wisdom has long been that punishing students for missing deadlines is good for them,” writes Ellen Boucher for the Chronicle of Higher Education, yet mounting evidence suggests that deadlines do more harm than good to students. Boucher suggests that punitive deadline policies tend to decrease the quality and timeliness of students’ work by compounding the anxieties that lead them to hand in late work in the first place. These problems, the author adds, are even more pronounced for first-generation and low-income students. Boucher outlines her strategy for helping students complete their work without deadlines, concluding that “it's time we give our students the same respect and flexibility that we demand in our own careers.” Chronicle of Higher Education

Northern SK postsecondary teaching program to lose funding

The Saskatchewan government plans to discontinue funding for a postsecondary teaching program in the province’s north, reports CBC. Based in La Ronge, the Northern Teacher Education Program states that it was informed last week that its funding would end after July 31, 2017. The program and its counterpart, Northern Professional Access College, have operated for 40 years and currently offer a four-year education degree as well as a bachelor of arts in Indigenous studies. SK Advanced Education Deputy Minister Louise Greenberg adds that students will continue to receive university-level training in La Ronge in a revised form. CBC | NationTalk | StarPhoenix | Global News

When facts change, PSE needs to change: HEQCO president

“The facts of public higher education in Ontario are different now than they were in the last half century,” writes Harvey Weingarten, president of the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario. Along with these changes, the author adds, “we have new ideas and solutions that are obvious,” yet the entrenchment of old ideas can remain difficult to overcome. Weingarten highlights the revision to Ontario’s postsecondary funding formula as a potential site of impending change, yet he asks whether such change will ultimately “amount to tweaking the legacy corridor funding model and reinforc[ing] the status quo?” Weingarten offers several examples of potential changes to the ON funding model and their implications. HEQCO

uManitoba to repair labs, boost research with $8.1M in new funding

The University of Manitoba has received a boost to its essential research activities thanks to $8.1M in federal funding. A university release states that the funds will be used to support repairs, upgrades, and the maintenance of its research labs and equipment, as well as research development and the commercialization of ideas. “It’s so important to ensure that our educational and research facilities receive the level of funding they need to maintain a world-class environment,” said Terry Duguid, MP for Winnipeg South. uManitoba | Winnipeg Free Press (Subscription Required)

New UBCO program to train grads for in-demand tech jobs

A new Bachelor of Media Studies program at UBC Okanagan aims to establish direct links between graduates and in-demand tech jobs. A UBCO release states that the program will train graduates for careers in high-demand areas of the tech industry, including game development, web design, interactive media, film production, and graphic design. “Kelowna’s tech industry is flourishing, with start-ups alongside established companies like Disney and Bardel Entertainment having offices in the valley,” says UBCO Principal Deborah Buszard. “The industry needs graduates with tech talent as well as creative and managerial skills and entrepreneurial spirit. Our new BMS program will provide the bridge from academic study to industry success.” UBCO

Arctic College to create NU-based law degree program in partnership with uSask

Nunavut Arctic College, through the Government of Nunavut, has elected to partner with the University of Saskatchewan for the design and delivery of a new Nunavut-based law degree program. The stated goal of the project is to increase the number of lawyers practicing in NU. The new program will also bring the total number of degree programs offered by NAC to three, which aligns with the territory’s mission to help more degree-seeking students study in NU. “Ensuring Inuit students have the opportunity to study law in Nunavut is a natural extension of our commitment to Indigenous initiatives and to Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation calls to action,” said uSask President and Vice-Chancellor Peter Stoicheff. NationTalk | NU | CBC

Federal cabinet wraps up first-ever retreat at a PSE institution

The first cabinet retreat to ever be held at a postsecondary institution has been a “tremendous success,” says Laurentian University President Dominic Giroux. A Laurentian release states that the university was selected to host the recent retreat due its track record of hosting high-level events and conferences, along with its bilingual status, research and innovation, and comprehensive approach to Indigenous education. “It has been a unique privilege to work with the Privy Council Office to host this retreat, and we were delighted by the opportunity to hold discussions with ministers, deputy ministers and their staff over the course of the visit,” said Giroux. Laurentian

UPEI breaks with Shinerama to focus fundraising efforts on local groups

The University of Prince Edward Island plans to end its relationship with Cystic Fibrosis Canada’s Shinerama fundraising campaign in favour of supporting more local causes. “Ultimately it came down to what the purpose for new student orientation is—an opportunity for our students to build healthy connections, and to develop those connections on campus and in the larger community," said UPE Student Orientation Coordinator Tayte Willows. UPEI has run the annual Shinerama campaign as part of its student orientation activities for 40 years. Moving forward, UPEI plans to support four local groups: the PEI. Humane Society, the PEI. chapter of the Canadian Mental Health Association, PEI Family Violence Prevention Services, and the Alzheimer's Society of PEI. CBC