Top Ten

September 19, 2018

AB to table tuition legislation this fall, two years after launching higher ed review

The Edmonton Journal has learned that the Government of Alberta will table legislation for student tuition this fall, two years after the province launched a top-to-bottom review of postsecondary education. The legislation will follow a series of tuition freezes implemented by the provincial NDP in 2015, the Journal adds. Adam Brown, VP of External Communications for the University of Alberta Students’ Union, told the Journal that he hopes the new legislation will include a three-year tuition model. “That’s a big thing for us, because while a tuition freeze has been great and it has saved students a lot of money, they have also not known what things are going to look like (in the future),” he said. Edmonton Journal

Durham announces new AI program

Durham College has announced a new program that will address the shortage of skilled labour in the AI sector. According to a Durham release, the Artificial Intelligence Analysis, Design and Implementation program will teach students how to leverage AI to extract data and guide decision-making and service delivery, deploy new solutions for complex day-to-day problems, and improve efficiency throughout the corporate sector. “DC’s new graduate certificate program will help fast-track more AI analysts, designers and system programmers who can hit the ground running,” said Marianne Marando, Executive Dean of Durham’s School of Business, IT & Management. The program will launch in 2019. Durham

QC students critical of sexual violence prevention guidelines

A new provincial bill states that all of Quebec’s universities and CEGEPs must implement policies for sexual violence prevention by September 2019, reports the Montreal Gazette. However, student activists have criticized the bill for failing to require an independent review board for complaints and failing to provide minimum guidelines for consent training or sexual assault policy. Caitlin Salvino, a student activist, told the Gazette that the loose guidelines risk band-aid solutions like online training articles for bystander intervention. “We’re looking at creative ways to address these problems, so we can address, and unpack and undo the climate of rape culture and climate of sexism,” said Shaheen Shariff, a McGill researcher. Montreal Gazette

Early start on job search leads to better opportunities after graduation: US study

Students who begin job searches at least six months before graduating, have a paid internship, or participate in extracurriculars are more likely to get a good job after graduating, according to a new US-based study. The survey of 6,000 recent graduates from five public universities found that 34% of students started looking for a job between 6-12 months before graduation. 32% of surveyed students had a paid internship, while 31% had participated in an academic student organization. “Students are increasingly focused on the kind of job and salary they can get right out of school. And administrators want to know what they can do to help students achieve their goals,” said EAB associate principal Brandon Chinn. “This survey underscores how important it is for students and schools to be purposeful and proactive about career preparation. It also shows that too few students are doing so.” Inside Higher Ed

TRU HR program achieves accreditation

Thompson Rivers University’s Human Resources program has received institutional accreditation from the Chartered Professionals in Human Resources BC & Yukon. “The accreditation allows more people to become certified with a Chartered Professionals in HR,” said City HR Advisor Bernie Mahoney. “Employers have recognized HR much the same way that accounting has with its designations, and most employers are moving toward having designations.” A TRU release adds that the accreditation also means that students no longer have to write the National Knowledge Exam in order to achieve designation with the Chartered Professionals in Human Resources. TRU

MacEwan launches bursary funded by parking tickets

MacEwan University has launched a bursary that is entirely funded by parking fines collected by the university’s Transportation Services department. “We wanted to create something more permanent, and something that would benefit MacEwan’s students directly,” explained Senior Manager Jim MacDonald. MacDonald explained that 25 of the $1000 bursaries will be distributed each year, but that the number could increase in the future as “we never seem to run out of people who get parking tickets.” MacEwan Manager of Community Development Sarah Branton said that the bursary benefits students and encourages the entire community to build a culture of giving. MacEwan

Health sector problems lead to poor enrollment at regional CEGEP nursing programs

Criticisms of the health sector, difficult working conditions, and other aspects of the industry have turned young people away from the medical sector, reports the Journal de Montréal. Cégep de La Pocatière has seen a decline in enrolment in its nursing program from 28 in 2014 to four in 2018, and Cégep de Jonquière decided to not launch a cohort this year at its La Malbaie satellite campus. Fédération des cégeps President Bernard Tremblay pointed to negative perceptions of the health workplace as a key problem, and said that working conditions for health professionals will need to be improved. Journal de Montréal

CNC opens heavy duty mechanic facility

The College of New Caledonia has officially opened its new Heavy Mechanical Trades Facility. The $18.5M building will accommodate 251 full-time equivalent spaces, as well as 48 new spaces for CNC’s Heavy-Duty Equipment Technician and Truck and Transport Mechanics programs. “The strength of CNC's programming includes practical hands-on training. The new Heavy Mechanical Trades Facility will enable students to develop the skills that employers are looking for," said CNC President Henry Reiser. The Citizen states that CNC received $6.9M from the federal government and $10.1M from BC in support of the project. Prince George Citizen

Couillard promises free education for part-time CEGEP students

Citing Quebec’s labour shortage, Philiipe Couillard has promised to abolish tuition for part-time CEGEP students who are enrolled in a technical or vocational program. Journal de Montréal explains that full-time students do not pay tuition for these programs, while part-time sessions cost $360 each. Couillard added that vocational training will also be free for those looking to upgrade their skills. Journal de Montréal

More US colleges turning to restorative justice in addressing sexual assault

A small but growing number of post-secondary institutions are turning to restorative justice as a model for addressing cases of sexual assault. The Chronicle of Higher Education reports that “in a restorative-justice approach, the victim and the offender, and in some cases other people affected by the misconduct, participate in active and often brutally honest discussions about how someone was harmed and what it would take to heal.” The offender must take responsibility for an assault as a precondition of this approach, in addition to discussing what steps they might take to ensure it does not happen again. Skeptics of the approach, however, worry that the process lets offenders off too easily, and that victims who pursue this process will feel pressured not to pursue a formal investigation. Chronicle of Higher Education (Subscription Required)