Top Ten

September 21, 2018

NS contributes $10M toward Dal arts centre project

The Nova Scotia government has contributed $10M toward Dalhousie University’s efforts to upgrade its performance facilities, reports CBC. In addition to upgrades to Dal’s existing arts centre, the project includes a new 300-seat concert hall. According to CBC, Dal is looking to raise $38.5M from public and private donors. "We're well over half and my goal is to have this project shovel in the ground before I complete my presidency at the end of 2018," said Dal President Richard Florizone. CBC states that Dal will name the new hall after Joseph Strug, who donated $5M to the project. CBC

Trent receives $1.13M gift to “Be Bold”

Trent University received a $1.13M gift from the Jalynn H Bennett Foundation on behalf of the late, former Board of Governors Chair with the encouragement to do something “bold, audacious and effective.” The university plans to direct the gift towards a number of projects that will enhance Trent’s natural setting, increase community engagement, and enrich the student experience. “Jalynn Bennett was a trailblazer who showed leadership in everything she undertook,” said Trent President Leo Groarke. “She broke glass ceilings and encouraged others to be brave and make their mark.” Trent

NorQuest, BVC sign curriculum-sharing agreement

NorQuest College and Bow Valley College have signed a curriculum-sharing agreement. NorQuest states that the agreement is the first of its kind and enables the two colleges to share programming without the need for individual contracts or agreements. “This agreement is about optimizing programming breadth by leveraging the unique strengths of both institutions,” stated BVC President Laura Jo Gunter. “Working together, we will maximize student choice and respond quickly to meet the labour force needs of industries that are growing and innovating in Alberta.” NorQuest

High school grades are inconsistent: UWaterloo

A list by the University of Waterloo’s Faculty of Engineering suggests that high schools in the Hamilton and Niagara regions do not grade equally, prompting the admissions committee to downgrade marks for some incoming students, reports CBC. The list is based on the discrepancy between students’ averages in high school and their corresponding first-year university grades, which UWaterloo uses to assess preparedness during the applications process. While local school boards insist that UWaterloo cannot accurately assess the grade discrepancies based on its current methodology, UWaterloo's Director of Admissions for the Faculty of Engineering William Bishop states that the data is accurate. CBC (1) | CBC (2) | Waterloo Regional Record

UCN announces Centre for Indigenous Community Development

University College of the North announced the creation of the Centre for Indigenous Community Development, which seeks to support the development of Indigenous and northern communities. UCN states that the centre aims to create a conversation about social, economic, and leadership development and foster collaborative activity and programming on key topics and issues. “I am excited to be leading this great new initiative at UCN,” said former MKO Grand Chief Sheila North. “The Centre for Indigenous Community Development will support the development and aspirations of people in northern and Indigenous communities.” Nation Talk

MPHEC study finds improvements in Maritime student debt

The Maritime Provinces Higher Education Commission has released a study that explores the experiences of the Class of 2014 in financing their university education. Over half of the respondents said that they borrowed to finance their first degree. MPHEC adds that those who borrowed accumulated a median $30K of debt. When compared to the Class of 2007, the rate of borrowing decreased 13% and borrowers accumulated nearly $4K less debt after correcting for inflation. “Our report shows some evidence for the overall improvement in the debt situation for Maritime university graduates over the last several years,” explained MPHEC Interim CEO Catherine Stewart, who also noted that different demographic groups see different borrowing patterns. MPHEC

SFU unveils ImageTech Lab

Simon Fraser University and Fraser Health have unveiled the SFU ImageTech Lab, a world-class clincial research facility that SFU states is the first-of-its-kind in Western Canada. The facility will advance brain and body research and will help to ensure British Columbia is globally competitive in advanced brain and body imaging. “The SFU ImageTech Lab adds to the university’s strengths in health technologies and our growing reputation as a national innovation leader,” stated SFU President Andrew Petter. “By fostering research that contributes to healthier communities, it will also help us to advance our mission as Canada’s Engaged University.” The lab was funded by a number of donors, including the Western Economic Diversification Canada, Canada Foundation for Innovation, and the BC Knowledge Development Fund. SFU

Former CEGEP Director fined, sentenced for tax fraud

Stéphanie Paquette, a former Director of Finance at the CEGEP Édouard-Montpetit in Longueuil, has received a nine-month suspended sentence for tax evasion, reports the Montreal Gazette. The Gazette states that Paquette pleaded guilty to assisting the co-accused Dino Marcoux and making false entries in the CEGEP’s account books. According to investigators, the pair concocted a scheme in which they used a series of bank transactions to divert public funds for their own use. Montreal Gazette | Journal de Montréal (Fr)

AUPE files for mediation for ULethbridge workers

The Alberta Union of Provincial Employees has filed for mediation with the University of Lethbridge, reports the Lethbridge Herald. AUPE states that negotiations broke down when ULethbridge submitted “a number of unsatisfactory proposals.” AUPE VP Susan Slade told the Herald that “there are approximately 500 AUPE members working the front lines at the University of Lethbridge, and they deserve a contract that reflects the value of their work.” Slade also alleged that the university was attempting to “nickle-and-dime their staff” while reporting a budgetary surplus of nearly $206M. ULethbridge pushed back against AUPE’s claims, stating that the $206M includes the university's net assets and restricted funds, and therefore does not accurately reflect funds that are available for ongoing operating expenses. Lethbridge Herald (AUPE) | Lethbridge Herald (U of L)

CNC launches automotive glass technician program

The College of New Caledonia has introduced a new Automotive Glass Technician Apprentice Certification, the Prince George Citizen reports. The course will include a 15-week online component, followed by one week in an automotive shop. The Citizen states that the blended delivery model will afford students the opportunity to keep working full time at the same time as it makes the program accessible for students who live outside the Prince George region. "This allows an apprentice to spent more time learning at their job while still being able to develop a network of peers outside of their workplace," said program instructor Ken Rowell. Prince George Citizen