Top Ten

August 24, 2018

Makerspaces provide youth with resilience, adaptability: Concordia

Taking part in active, hands-on learning in social settings helps youth become more resourceful, adaptable, and resilient, write Concordia University President Alan Shepard and Associate Professor Ann-Louise Davidson. Shepard and Davidson write about how makerspaces engage students who do not thrive in the traditional classroom, allow youth to take pride in tangible accomplishments, and encourage problem solving through consultation and community. “Taken together, the benefits of making and mixing improve self-confidence, self-direction and respect for diversity,” they conclude, “perhaps the best attributes for resilience in the 21st century.” The Province

NSCC applicants to popular programs can see benefits in multi-year wait

Fourteen of Nova Scotia Community College’s programs have multi-year wait lists, reports CBC.  “Wait-lists are really dynamic,” said NSCC Registrar and Director of Enrolment Christine Arsenault. “They change on a daily basis. And they're different year over year. It depends on what's going on in the job market.” Arsenault added that wait-lists can help protect the interests of would-be students by ensuring that the job market is not flooded with new applicants. “When I first signed up, I wanted to get in there and get it done and over with,” said NSCC student Katrina Pierce. “I don't think that I would be where I'm at academically if it wasn't for that wait because it gave me that much more drive to be successful in what I chose to do.” CBC

TRU becomes research hub for ecosystem recovery

Thompson Rivers University has announced that it will be able to create its Centre for Ecosystem Reclamation, thanks to a $2.5M award of the NSERC Industrial Research Chair in Ecosystem Reclamation held by Lauchlan Fraser. The program will provide project funding for researchers and trainees to study biodiversity, climate change, and soil amendments in the context of ecosystem reclamation. “We will advance and enhance research currently taking place to find ways to increase the speed with which we can restore disturbed ecosystems,” Fraser explained. “We’ll be moving into new research areas, pushing forward and expanding the envelope of our understanding.” The IRC was funded by $1.8M in industry and community pledges, as well as a federal investment of $875K. TRU | Kamloops This Week

RDC celebrates $88M sports, education facility opening

Red Deer College recently celebrated the grand opening of its $88M Gary W Harris Canada Games Centre. The facility houses a performance gymnasium, ice arena, fitness centre, running track, and squash courts. It will provide space for students from all of RDC’s athletic teams to practice, train, and compete. “We are so honoured and excited that this facility will be used by community members and athletes from across Canada,” said RDC President Joel Ward. “But teaching and learning is always at the core of what we do and who we are as an educational institution. To that end, we designed this building to facilitate teaching opportunities across a wide range of programs, primarily in the fields of health sciences.” Global News | RDC

Ryerson announces new for-credit hackathon-based course

Ryerson University’s Science Discovery Zone has launched its first zone learning-based course, which is available to all Ryerson students. The university states that the for-credit course will have no “lectures,” homework, or exams, and will consist of experiential learning opportunities. The semester will consist of five hackathons that are scheduled between various professional development workshops. The course will place a strong emphasis on communication, networking, and collaborative discoveries, and will be graded according to the student’s ability to pivot in their thinking and design. Ryerson (1) | Ryerson (2)

UofT student residence gets approval after years of negotiations

The University of Toronto has reached an agreement with the City of Toronto and local community groups to build a new 23-storey student residence. The residence will be the first new housing building constructed on the downtown campus in a decade, and will house 511 students when it is completed. “We wanted to find the place where U of T’s obligation to students overlaps with the broader community’s interests so it’s a successful project in both the university and public realms,” said Scott Mabury, UofT’s Vice-President of University Operations. “I’m confident this building will be a positive addition to the fabric of this city.” UofT | Varsity | Globe and Mail  

UCalgary, Telus, NSERC partnership sees establishment of new research chair

The University of Calgary has received a $1.25M investment from NSERC and Telus to establish the new Telus-Industrial Research Chair in Information Technology. The chair will be held by Rei Safavi-Naeini, who will be continuing her research on developing new security and privacy technologies for the Internet. “Security has become an urgent concern because of the rapid growth of the Internet of Things, increased connectivity and the development of quantum computers, which affects the current security infrastructure of the Internet,” says Safavi-Naeini. “The support from Telus and from NSERC boosts our research capacity and allows us to hire new experts and expand our existing educational program to train the next generation of highly qualified cybersecurity personnel. This ambitious research program would not be possible without this kind of leadership and partnered support.” UCalgary

Co-curricular record gives Selkirk students job advantage

Selkirk College students will have the chance to formalize the soft skills developed throughout their program of study with a Co-Curricular Record. This fall, students will be able to earn official co-curricular credits by participating in organized activities focused on honing employability skills. “When employers are hiring into their organization, they are drawn to that well-rounded candidate who has more than the qualified skills and industry knowledge to do the job,” says Selkirk Vice President of Students & Advancement John Kincaid. “Employers want communication and leadership skills, a team player and problem solver, someone with emotional intelligence.” Selkirk notes that the use of CCR is growing at postsecondary institutions across Canada. Selkirk

NB universities discuss preparations for cannabis legalization  

Universities located across New Brunswick say that they are prepared to roll with the legalization of cannabis as the school year gets underway. Students at St Thomas University will not be allowed to smoke on campus property, in keeping with the NB-wide Cannabis Control act. Similar rules have been implemented at the University of New Brunswick and Mount Allison University. MtA added that it is hiring a harms reduction educator to work with the campus community, while STU and UNB have developed research chair positions related to cannabis. “I think there's a learning for us as well in this. I think we'll lean heavily on staff and faculty to recognize the misuse of cannabis,” said Scott Duguay, STU associate vice-president of enrolment management. “I think new norms will be set.” CBC

URegina celebrates grand reopening of College West housing

The University of Regina has celebrated the grand reopening of the College West building, which has spent the last two years under renovation. The renovations brought the student housing up to code while creating “modern, safe, bright, airy, and accessible housing for 274 students.” It is the first on-campus housing at URegina capable of heating and cooling at the same time. “It’s important to society that everyone feels included and that everyone has the same access to services and to being together,” said URegina Director of Student Affairs Operations Bettina Welsh. ““Being able to go in a room and practice your culture freely and being able to do that really builds a sense of belonging and helps students feel comfortable and enjoy being here.” Regina Leader-Post