Top Ten

August 23, 2017

QC invests $23M to fight sexual violence on campus

The Quebec government has unveiled a strategy to combat sexual violence on campus and has provided $23M over five years to support the strategy. This Monday, Minister of Higher Education Hélène David released nearly twenty measures that colleges and universities are expected to implement over the next few years. “Victims must never be left to their own devices,” said David. In particular, the measures establish that each institution should establish a “one-stop shop” to welcome and assist victims, as well as a code of conduct and a policy to prevent such attacks. Journal de Montréal | La Presse | Fédération des Cégeps

BC creates 562 new trades seats

British Columbia has announced that it will increase access to trades training in the province by adding 562 seats at 13 public postsecondary institutions. A BC release notes that trades currently needed by BC industries include millwrights, heavy duty mechanics, and carpenters. “It's been inspiring for me to visit our public post-secondary institutions, and to meet and listen to the trades students that will be building our homes, roads, schools and businesses,” said Melanie Mark, BC Minister of Advanced Educations, Skills and Training. “These students are future innovators. Our investment today in additional trades seats is an investment in the future of our province. Together, we are building a better BC.” The province is providing $1.67M to support the new seats. BC

Carleton launches Global Water Institute

Carleton University has officially launched its Global Water Institute following a water research symposium that it hosted last Wednesday. The institute has been made possible by the support of a $4M endowment from the Jarislowsky Foundation. “It is always very interesting to hear and learn more about what is happening in other countries, and to learn how you are dealing with your problems,” said Carleton Professor Banu Örmeci, who is also the Jarislowsky Chair in Water and Global Health. Carleton Board member Tim Brodhead credited Örmeci and the GWI advisory members with identifying the need for an institute many years ago. “Canada needs excellence in all domains, and in supporting the best academics in the best universities, we can see real progress,” said Brodhead. Carleton

PSE should use similar techniques to market to Gen Z, adult learners

“Gen Z, the demographic cohort after millennials, has a lot in common with adult learners—more than you’d think,” writes Nicole Larkin. The author describes a number of similarities between the two groups when it comes to making choices about higher ed. The similarities include the groups’ fiscal conservatism, the demands they face on their time and attention, and their desire to relate education to workplace skills. Larkin supports these claims by citing a US-based study of Gen Z learners, and notes that “the challenge for colleges and universities going forward will be creating enrollment growth campaigns that reach both nontraditional and Gen Z traditional students.” Inside Higher Ed

Cégep de la Gaspésie et des Îles receives $5.4M to upgrade, rebuild centre

Cégep de la Gaspésie et des Îles has received $5.4M to upgrade the facilities of the Centre d’études collégiales des Îles-de-la-Madeleine. The cégep will use the funding to upgrade and rebuild part of the Centre d’études collégiales des Îles-de-la-Madeleine, currently housed in old 1970s-era modular buildings. These facilities house the science lab that serves the natural sciences program and is used by students and professors for their research activities, as well as the institution’s technology transfer centre. “Our local students will benefit from modern facilities and high-quality equipment during their studies. Magdalen Islands students are very loyal to our institution, and we’re proud to offer them this new environment,” says Yves Galipeau, director général of Cégep de la Gaspésie et des Îles. Canada

Eight tips for Canadian academics to resist Trump-era ideology

“In an ideal world this would go without saying: the Trump administration and the policies it is currently advocating are unacceptable,” writes Ryan Burns, who offers eight tips to Canadian academics looking to resists the policies and ideology for which Trump stands. These tips include donating one’s time or resources to worthy causes, embracing public scholarship and activism, and drafting public policy proposals. “The next four years seem daunting,” Burns concludes, “but our collective efforts can assuage the rising tide of nativism, misogyny, Islamophobia and environmental destruction.” University Affairs

UWindsor creative arts school move delayed by construction

The University of Windsor’s School of Creative Arts move to its new site in downtown Windsor has been delayed after it was determined that full construction suitable for occupancy would not be possible until later in the fall. A UWindsor release states that “while this delay is disappointing, it will ensure that student activities are not disrupted, and that the new buildings will be fully tested and operational for the January 2018 semester.” CBC says that an official opening of the facilities is expected to happen in November, and that students will study at the existing facilities at the university’s main campus while work continues. UWindsor | CBC

Lease fight creates concerns for NAC’s usage of Hotel Arctic

An “ongoing squabble” with the Waters Edge restaurant and Kickin’ Caribou Pub over leasing, has threatened Nunavut Arctic Colleges’ plans for Hotel Arctic. When Qikiqtaaluk Properties bought Iqaluit’s now-closed Hotel Arctic, Nunatsiaq Online explains that they aimed to lease the building to NAC for use as a student residence with classrooms and a cafeteria. However, the presence of Waters Edge restaurant and Kicikin’ Caribou Pub on a NAC campus would reportedly be a violation of college policies against possessing or consuming alcohol. “At this late date, it will be impossible for NAC to obtain sufficient classroom, office and cafeteria space for its full roster of 2017-18 programs,” NAC President Joe Kunuk noted, pointing in particular to the problem this would create for the college’s new law school. Nunatsiaq Online

Professor deems best-teacher awards to be “bunk”

“How does any professor, let alone a panel of judges, really know what goes on in another professor’s class?” asks Jacques Berlinerblau in a critique of faculty teaching awards. The author targets some of the most common methods for evaluating teaching, deeming peer observation to be a “60-minute theatrical set piece” and student evaluations of teaching to be “metric anarchy.” Further, the author describes the difficulty of reaching consensus about what constitutes teaching excellence before arguing that singling teachers out for individual praise largely serves to hide the “absurdities of the tenure system” and “collapsed job market” that prevent most professors from teaching to the best of their ability. Chronicle of Higher Education (Subscription Required)

Sheridan president maintains course toward polytechnic status

Prior to his departure from Sheridan College, former President Jeff Zabudky was “ticking off items” to drive Sheridan toward becoming a university, reports, adding that current president and former provost Mary Preece “has her sights set on keeping the momentum Sheridan had toward its goal of elevating its designation.” The article describes how Sheridan is currently pursuing a polytechnic designation as part of a potential evolution into “Sheridan Polytechnic University,” and discusses the partnership between Ryerson University and Sheridan targeting university expansion into