Top Ten

February 16, 2018

Canada announces five “superclusters” to receive $950M

The federal government has announced the five groups that will together receive $950M from Canada’s new Innovation Superclusters Initiative. The five recipients are the Ocean Supercluster based in Atlantic Canada, the SCALE.AI Supercluster based in Quebec, the Advanced Manufacturing Supercluster based in Ontario, the Protein Industries Supercluster based in the Prairies, and the Digital Technology Supercluster based in British Columbia. “When small, medium-sized and large companies, academic institutions and not-for-profit organizations come together to generate bold ideas, Canadians benefit from more well-paying jobs, groundbreaking research and a world-leading innovation economy,” the release states. Canada | Universities Canada | CICan

Western knowledge finally catching up to Indigenous knowledge: SFU Professor

“There are many cases where science and history are catching up with what Indigenous peoples have long known,” writes Simon Fraser University Professor of Archaeology George Nicholas. The author highlights examples in several different fields where Traditional Knowledge was aware of a phenomenon or event that was not understood or accepted by Western Knowledge until significantly later. The author discusses how “both are constantly verified through repetition and verification, inference and prediction, empirical observations and recognition of pattern events,” before explaining the differences and distinct value of the knowledge systems. Maclean’s

UCalgary, Lakeland sign veterinary partnership

The University of Calgary Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Lakeland College have established a partnership that will open the door to initiatives such as unique student practicums, beef and dairy cattle research projects, and sharing facilities and resources. “UCVM and Lakeland students will benefit from the sharing of world-class facilities such as the college’s Dairy Learning Centre and our extensive clinical and professional skills training facilities,” says UCalgary Faculty of Veterinary Medicine Dean Baljit Singh. “The faculties at both schools will grow their research collaborations in the area of cattle and equine health.” UCalgary

Shortfall of medical residency spots could triple in coming years: report

A new report warns that the number of Canadian medical school graduates unable to find a residency training program could triple in the coming years if more residency spots are not created. The Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada is recommending that provincial health ministries boost funding to create additional residency spots, adding that if the ministries do not do so, the careers of hundreds of doctors could be jeopardized. The organization is also urging an overhaul of the two-round system through which the annual residency spots are filled so that Canadian medical school graduates have less competition from graduates coming from international medical schools. Toronto Star

Canada’s world-class education rates fuelled by immigration: report

Canada’s status as one of the best-educated countries in the world is heavily fuelled by the educational attainment levels of immigrants, according to a new government report. The report found that the percentage of degree holders among those aged 25 to 35 is 36% for second-generation migrants, compared to 24% for those with Canadian-born parents. “Parents’ expectations regarding education matters, and immigrant families, particularly Asian families, tend to have higher educational expectations for their children, on average, than families with Canadian-born parents,” said the report. According to the OECD, Canada was just behind Korea in 2016 as the most educated country in the world. The PIE News

UWindsor to introduce IT into forensic sciences program

The University of Windsor has introduced a new stream of specialization for honours students in its Forensic Sciences program that will enable these students to apply Information Technology in their field. Program Chair Shashi Jasra says that many people are now storing and sharing information through digital media. “With advancements in technology, there will be increased demand for the forensic professionals with expertise in this field,” says Jasra. “We are restructuring Forensic Sciences programs with an eye to current and future changes in the job market.” UWindsor

Queen’s expands community-based alternative reading week program

Queen’s University has announced the expansion of its Queen’s Cares Alternative Reading Week program. The community-engaged learning initiative is run by the school’s Student Experience Office in Student Affairs. It offers students the opportunity to work in teams to complete a project that has been identified as a need by a local community organization. “Queen’s Cares is about partnerships, collaboration, leadership, personal growth and skill development,” says Kevin Collins, Coordinator of Community-Engaged Learning in the SEO. “Students are encouraged to make connections between what they are bringing to the project and what they learn, and think about how they can apply their new skills and community experience to their studies and to their career path/journey.” Queen’s

MRU Conservatory partners with Calgary Chinese Orchestra

The Mount Royal University Conservatory has announced a new partnership that will see the Calgary Chinese Orchestra (CCO) come under the conservatory’s organizational umbrella. An MRU release notes that for 20 years, the CCO has promoted and raised awareness of Chinese music and culture. “This is a great opportunity for the Calgary Chinese Orchestra to be part of the bigger music community,” says CCO President Winnie Ng. “Increasing our membership is our No. 1 priority at the moment. Joining Mount Royal University Conservatory provides a formal channel for us to recruit new members.” MRU

NB announces 400 additional student summer jobs for 2018

The Government of New Brunswick has announced that it is adding $4M in funding for the Student Employment Experience Development to create 400 more placements this year. Placements will also be increased in length to nine weeks for college and graduating high school students and to 14 weeks for university students. “With summer jobs offered through the SEED program as well as other public, private and non-profit employment opportunities, New Brunswick students will have access to many quality summer jobs in 2018,” said NB Labour, Employment and Population Growth Minister Gilles LePage. NB

New report investigates precarious labour conditions on ON campuses

A new report from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives suggests that 53% of postsecondary education workers in Ontario are, to some extent, precariously employed. Looking at data from Canada’s Labour Force Survey, the report specifically identifies a rise in work categories that are classified as more precarious (e.g. research assistants and teaching assistants) alongside a decline in others that have traditionally been less precarious (e.g. librarians). “Indicators of precarity, including workers holding multiple jobs, more temporary work and unpaid overtime, are on the rise, though not uniformly, and not for everyone,” the report adds. CCPA