Top Ten

August 31, 2016

Brock parts ways with presidential appointee

Brock University will continue with an Acting President at the helm after the institution’s Board of Trustees announced this week it has parted ways with Wendy Cukier, who had earlier been selected to become Brock’s next president. The school's Board of Trustees provided a release earlier this week announcing that it and Cukier came to a mutual decision not to proceed with the appointment. “The long transition process gave both parties an opportunity to work together and many positive developments ensued. Dr. Cukier brought to the University new opportunities that will be part of her legacy,” stated Board Chair John Suk. Details regarding the formal search for Brock’s President and Vice-chancellor will reportedly be released at a future date. Brock | St Catharines Standard Niagara This Week | CBC

Funding dispute results in reduced hours for Dal sex-assault helpline

Dalhousie University’s sex-assault helpline will reportedly be operating at reduced capacity after the student union and Dal administration failed to come to an agreement around the helpline’s funding. According to CBC, administration offered to pay half of the project’s costs at a value of $22.5K, while the student union asked for more support. “We needed to learn more about whether more should be invested into the program,” explained Dal Vice-Provost Student Affairs Arig al Shaibah. “The first year isn't always sort of indicative of how a program, how impactful it might be.” Student Union Vice-President Internal Rhiannon Makohoniuk says that the union will instead operate the helpline between noon and midnight each day from September 3rd to November 3rd, when Makhoniuk says most sexual assaults happen on campus. CBC

uSask launches high tech research centre for crop research

The University of Saskatchewan has officially launched its new Plant Phenotyping and Imaging Research Centre and begun a seven-year, $37.2M major food research project titled Designing Crops for Global Food Security. “What we have here is very strong computer science, excellent image acquisition and analysis …. very good agriculture engineering, robotics and so on,” said Global Institute for Food Security Executive Director Maurice Moloney. “It's probably the place in Canada to do all of this work.” CBC states that the project aims to help enhance crop breeding to find solutions for national and international food security, and adds that one research approach will be the use of robotic drones to map food production and maximize crop yields. CBC | Global News | Windsor Star

Huffington Post lists most beautiful residence buildings on Canadian campuses

The Huffington Post has published a list of the most beautiful residence buildings on Canadian university campuses. A preamble states that the listed buildings were judged solely by the visual impression made by their exteriors, arguing that “of course, all student dorm rooms in Canada are different in terms of what they offer, but for the most part, they are pretty similar on the inside.” The article also notes that a number of buildings featured in its list were not originally built to be residences, but were converted to this purpose well after their original construction. Huffington Post

Add audio, visual components to published papers to spread knowledge, says Royal Roads prof

There are many effective ways to share scholarship beyond the realm of text, writes George Veletsianos for the Chronicle of Higher Education. An Associate Professor at Royal Roads University, Veletsianos speaks about how he creates video and audio clips to accompany each of his published academic papers. The author argues that these additional materials can help provide colleagues, students, and broader audiences with more potential entry points in order to “introduce, humanize, and explore a topic.” Veletsianos concludes by inviting readers to explore similar methods to seek out new ways of spreading scholarship. Chronicle of Higher Education

uRegina secures Wascana Park land for major campus renovation, construction

The University of Regina has been approved to take ownership of a plot of land in Regina’s Wascana Park for a new campus renovation and construction project. uRegina will partner with Conexus Credit Union to donate a combined $8M to fund uRegina's College Avenue Campus renewal project, and for Conexus to build a new head office with a business incubation space on the newly acquired land. Regina’s City Council approved the transfer of land earlier this week. 620 ckrm | Leader Post | CBC (1) | CBC (2)

Humber receives $21.6M from Canada for two key infrastructure projects

Humber College is set to take on two major infrastructure projects with the support of $21.6M from the federal government. The funds will support construction of a 70,000 square-foot Centre of Technology and Innovation at the college’s North Campus, as well as the implementation of a multi-year plan to significantly improve water and energy efficiency at the college. “This funding will enable Humber to continue to support two of our core values: innovation and sustainability,” says Humber President Chris Whitaker. “With this announcement, the federal government has acknowledged the significant role that postsecondary institutions play in fostering innovation, entrepreneurship, research and environmental sustainability.” Canada

UBC faces criticism from student union leader for on-campus housing application fee

A student union leader at the University of British Columbia has criticized the school for charging students $50 to apply for on-campus housing that many of them will allegedly never use, reports CBC. Ava Nasiri is president of the Alma Mater Society that represents all students at UBC's Point Grey campus. She argues that UBC’s application fees are unfair due to the fact that the waiting list for such housing currently sits above 6,000 students and many students will forfeit this fee without receiving housing. But UBC's Managing Director, Student Housing & Hospitality Services Andrew Parr argues that “if we took that fee out, we'd have to find a way to recoup that somewhere else. ... The right place for that to be is in the application fee and to spread that out to everyone, even to those who unfortunately aren't successful.” UBC

KingsU undergrads make international headlines with interactive periodic table

The days of a periodic table hanging on the back wall of a high school classroom might be over, thanks to a new electronic version produced by undergraduate students at The King’s University, reports the Edmonton Journal. Titled Isotopes Matter, the project has received attention from science organizations and publications around the world. “The response has been excitement, fear, loathing by some who think the periodic table was finished 100 years ago and it shouldn’t be touched,” says KingsU Professor of Physics and Astronomy Brian Martin. In addition to its value for scientific research, the new interactive table reportedly benefits students by incorporating a number of questions designed to help students develop their scientific knowledge. Edmonton Journal | IUPAC | Cheminst | Chemistry Views

Texas university looks to improve sexual assault investigations by educating police on trauma

A US university has created a manual designed to “replace tradition with science” by explaining what happens to victims’ brains during and after a traumatic event such as sexual assault, reports the Chronicle of Higher Education. The 174-page manual developed by the University of Texas at Austin is reportedly designed to help campus police acknowledge and overcome their implicit biases when they expect victims of trauma to behave in certain ways. Austin Detective Samantha Carter adds that providing police with a basic training in trauma science can help them obtain more accurate and reliable evidence from survivors while better supporting them through the evidence-gathering process. Chronicle of Higher Education (Subscription Required)