Top Ten

June 29, 2018

U of T approves policy that could place students with mental health issues on mandatory leave

The University of Toronto’s governing council has approved a policy that could see the university place students with mental health issues on a mandatory leave of absence, reports CBC. The policy “is designed to give the university a way to respond, that is not punitive, to [a] concerning behaviour that is believed to be a result of serious mental health or other issues,” said U of T Vice Provost for Students Sandy Welsh. City News reports that the Ontario Human Rights Commission has said that it will closely monitor the implementation of the policy. Student organizations held a protest rally on the evening that the policy was being discussed and voted on. CBC | City News

Great conferences need great facilitators

The first step in being a great conference facilitator is to understand that the primary goal of conference sessions is to provide value and insight to the audience, writes Garrett Richards. The second lies in understanding just how much of an impact great facilitators can have on the success of a conference. The author explores four key ways in which session facilitators can improve sessions, which include conveying clear expectations to presenters, keeping presenters disciplined, ensuring that each presenter has an equal opportunity to speak, and engaging the audience throughout the session through structured activities. University Affairs

McMaster opens Bertrand Russell Archives and Research Centre

McMaster University has officially opened the doors of the Bertrand Russell Archives and Research Centre. The state-of-the-art facility is designed to house McMaster’s Russell Archives and support activities related to scholarship. The facility includes a climate-control system and compact shelving; a reading room; a display room that features Russell’s personal writing desk and armchair; as well as offices and a conference room. “This remarkable new facility signifies the critical importance of the Bertrand Russell Archives, which are among the University’s most significant cultural assets,” says McMaster Librarian Vivian Lewis. “This space will serve as a hub of intellectual activity for the many researchers who come to McMaster each year to gain scholarly insights from this world-class collection.” McMaster

Former student at Royal Military College charged with sexual assault

A captain of the Royal Canadian Air Force has been charged with sexually assaulting a member of the Forces when the two were students at Royal Military College in Kingston, Ontario, reports the Ottawa Citizen. According to the Canadian Forces National Investigation Service, Captain Richard Harding has been charged with sexual assault under the Canadian Criminal Code and with one count of Disgraceful Conduct under the National Defense Act. “All complaints of sexual assault are taken seriously by the military police,” Lt-Col Kevin Cadman, Commander of the Investigation Service, said in a statement. The Citizen adds that Harding faces a possible court-martial. Ottawa Citizen

Canada contributes $10M for High-Luminosity Hadron Collider upgrades

Kirsty Duncan, Canada’s Minister of Science and Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities, has announced that the federal government will contribute $10M to support upgrades to the European-based High-Luminosity Large Hadron Collider. A McGill University release states that researchers from McGill, the University of Alberta, University of British Columbia, University of Calgary, Carleton University, Université de Montréal, Simon Fraser University, the University of Toronto, the University of Victoria, and York University are all contributing to the project. McGill adds that members of its ATLAS research group are constructing an instrument that measures the energy of particles produced in proton-proton collisions. McGill

How do departments make hiring decisions after the interviews are over?

“There are many different variations on how [a faculty] search committee might narrow the short list and reach a hiring decision,” writes Karen Kelsky, which is why it is crucial for a candidate to treat every person they meet during the process as someone who can impact the final hiring decision. Kelsky outlines some of the different ways that departments can make hiring decisions, from having their search committee produce a candidate who gets rubber-stamped by their dean, to a committee that produces a ranked list that the dean might ignore entirely. In the author’s experience, nearly anyone associated with a department can impact a department’s decision, be it formally or informally. Chronicle of Higher Education

Federal government earmarks $1.4M for marijuana research projects

The Federal government has awarded 14 academics across the country $1.4M to conduct a wide range of research projects to help Canadians better understand the effects of marijuana use, reports the Globe and Mail. Each project will receive $100K from Canadian Institutes of Health Research. According to the Globe and Mail, the funded projects will include a study of long-held beliefs about marijuana use amongst young adults, the effects of marijuana legalization on racialized and Indigenous communities, and an evaluation of provincial regulatory models for cannabis policy. Bill Blair, the MP who has acted as the government’s point person on cannabis legislation, stated that the criminalization of marijuana has inhibited comprehensive research. The Globe and Mail

EMBC, JIBC partner on emergency and social services training for First Nations communities

Emergency Management BC (EMBC) and the Justice Institute of British Columbia have partnered with First Nations communities to develop relevant and effective emergency management training. “2017 was the worst wildfire season in 100 years, and many First Nations communities were particularly hard-hit,” said Canada’s Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation, Scott Fraser. “This training will help build skills that enhance the capacity of First Nations communities to respond to large scale emergencies in their area, and support community members with emergency social services.” The pilot emergency management workshops will be targeted to seven First Nations communities. BC

Olds launches high-tech Smart Farm

Olds College has formally opened the Smart Farm, a cutting-edge learning environment for agriculture and technological students. The initiative will see the college transform its existing farm operation into a farm of the future equipped with the latest technologies. “Working with industry partners from the agriculture and technology sectors, the Olds College Smart Farm will provide a cutting-edge learning environment for our students and lifelong learners by providing a hands-on venue for industry to develop, integrate and test new agriculture technology and practices,” said Olds President Stuart Cullum. Red Deer Advocate | Olds

Brock partners with Reulingen for dual degree business program

Brock University’s Goodman School of Business and Reulingen University’s ESB Business School in Germany have partnered to enhance Brock's Bachelor of Business Administration Co-Op International Dual Degree program. Reutlingen is the fourth European institution to join the dual degree program. “This partnership extends our strengths and differentiates Goodman from other business schools by offering a dual degree that provides students a work opportunity in another country,” said Business Dean Andrew Gaudes. “It really is an incredible opportunity for students and we’re thrilled to be able to offer it.” BrockU