Top Ten

October 25, 2016

QC “witnessing the beginning of a larger movement” to end campus sexual violence

Recent allegations of sexual assault at Université de Laval might have marked a “turning point in social awareness about the pervasiveness of inappropriate sexual behaviour,” writes CBC. The article highlights a recent report showing that a quarter of Quebec students face some form of sexual victimization, even as specific instances of such violence on campus continue to be discussed as isolated incidents. The QC government has announced that it plans to conduct a series of consultations on campus-based sexual violence, a process that Higher Education Minister Hélène David says will help the government establish “common practices that will then be framed in a policy or even a law.” uLaval Rector Denis Brière released a statement on Saturday about the alleged assaults at his university, stating that “we are witnessing the beginning of a larger movement” to put an end to sexual violence. CBC also reports that police have arrested two suspects in connection to the sexual assaults at uLaval. CBC (1) | CBC (2) | CBC (3)

AB tuition freeze “unsustainable,” says UAlberta president

The Alberta government’s decision to maintain a tuition freeze for 2017-18 is “unsustainable,” according to University of Alberta President David Turpin. In a UAlberta board of governors meeting last Friday, Turpin reportedly said that he was “very concerned” about the government’s unwillingness to offset losses in domestic tuition for the next academic year, adding that “the public policy to freeze tuition, that’s fine, but there’s cost and … someone has to pay for it. If we don’t receive backfill, it’s a cut, a pure and simple cut to programs.” The AB Government has stated that it plans to spend the next year reviewing its funding processes with an aim to establish a new PSE tuition and fee model for the beginning of the 2018-19 fall semester. Edmonton Journal

How China, India are climbing international university rankings

Institutions from around the world can learn much from the progress that China and India are making in global university rankings, writes Anand Kulkarni for University World News. The author highlights how both countries have fared well in recent years, noting for example that India has risen to eighth in the world for the number of students it graduates in science and engineering. Kulkarni warns, however, that graduating more students in a particular area “does not necessarily say much about quality, the ability of graduates to find meaningful jobs or research capability, among other things.” This is part of the reason, Kulkarni writes, that China has advanced in world university rankings at a better pace than India. The author attributes this success to China’s more consistent distribution of institutions among the different tiers of rankings, while India’s tendency to have a “best and the rest” system, with only a few elite institutions, continues to hold back the country’s overall performance. University World News

Bishop's offers same day application and admission, sees enrolment boost

Bishop’s University is working to bolster enrolment with Accelerated Admissions, a program that allows students to apply to the institution at an event and receive an answer within hours. Dan Seneker of Bishop’s enrolment management says the program is “a lot of work,” but is possible with three or four individuals working on the files. “Hopefully, by students coming here today, getting their offers of admission, they've already become part of the family and made their decision as to making Bishop's their university choice,” noted Seneker. CBC reports that Bishop’s has also welcomed its largest first-year class in school history this year with 919 students. CBC

McMaster receives $1.25M to benefit children, families

McMaster University is set to better support thousands of young people and their families thanks to a $1.25M gift and matching program from the Joyce Family Foundation to McMaster Children & Youth University. Launched in 2011, the initiative is the first children’s university in Canada with programming for “interactive, family-based discovery.” The Joyce Family Foundation’s gift will help support and expand the initiative, along with a gift matching program that doubles any commitment of support to the Children & Youth University. “This wonderful gift from the Joyce Family Foundation continues its impactful philanthropic legacy at McMaster, and once again directly benefits the young people in our community,” said McMaster President Patrick Deane. “We are deeply appreciative of this generous support.” McMaster

Professors don’t need to spend so much time professing, says Chronicle contributor

“It’s natural that when we go through professional training we become acculturated to our disciplines in ways that spill into our personal lives,” writes Rachel Toor for the Chronicle of Higher Education. “For professors, that means we tend to profess.” Toor argues that there are many reasons why professors’ tendency to expound or monologue about a given subject is understandable, as they may feel a need to prove themselves or “just get so excited about the material that they can’t refrain from pointing out every single thing they think is cool.” Ultimately, however, Toor concludes that no matter how knowledgeable one may be, one does not have the right to neglect the give-and-take that is necessary for good communication. Chronicle of Higher Education (Subscription Required)

Outgoing uSask Chancellor urges students to fight racism with compassion

Outgoing University of Saskatchewan Chancellor Blaine Favel gave a speech last week urging students from the school’s fall graduating class to speak openly about racism and to fight it with compassion. Favel specifically targeted American Republican candidate Donald Trump in warning students not to fall victim to the “hatred” and “false differences” between groups and cultures. “Change has to start here and the change has to start by talking about it,” he told the hundreds of graduating students. “The hardest goal for all of us is just simply to be kind sometimes.”  Saskatoon StarPhoenix

CNA-Q, QNCECS sign MOU and announce UNESCO Chair

The College of the North Atlantic - Qatar and Qatar National Commission for Education, Culture and Sciences have signed an MOU that will see the organizations engage in projects and activities that will further the outreach, research, advocacy, and programming of Technical and Vocational Education and Training and Sustainable Development in Qatar. CNA-Q further states that at the MOU signing, the first accomplishment of the new partnership has been the creation of the UNESCO Chair on Technical and Vocational Education and Training and Sustainable Development. CNA

Langara set to please its biggest fans with investment from Canada, BC

Students, faculty, and staff at Langara College are set to benefit from nearly $1.6M in new funding to  improve the environmental sustainability of the college’s campus. The funds will come from the federal and BC governments and will support the replacement of two 1970-era, energy-intensive ventilation systems. The federal government reports that the new fan systems will improve air distribution, reduce operating costs, and improve energy consumption at the college. “The new fans will improve comfort, reduce operating costs, and significantly improve energy consumption and reduce emissions,” said Langara President Lane Trotter. Canada | BC | Langara

“Clown Lives Matter” incident sparks controversy on UoGuelph campus

A debate around free speech and campus safety has emerged at the University of Guelph after an individual appeared on the university’s campus last week dressed as a clown and holding a sign that read “#clownlivesmatter.” Critics accused the individual of trivializing the #blacklivesmatter movement and pointed out that the individual’s signs also mocked language that is often used to speak about sexual assault. The Guelph Mercury reports that the incident came to an end when the individual left voluntarily after being asked to do so by campus police. Earlier this month, two clown incidents led UoGuelph Campus Community Police to issue a safety bulletin warning that “creepy clown” behaviour could result in “judicial or criminal charges.” Guelph Mercury