Top Ten

July 16, 2019

It’s time to talk about the high rates of suicide among Canada’s international students: Todd

There needs to be greater public awareness around the elevated risk of suicide among Canada’s international students, writes Douglas Todd. The author notes that at least 15 international students in British Columbia, for example, have taken their own lives in recent years. The reasons behind this elevated risk of suicide range from fear of disappointing parents to the pressure to settle and work in Canada. Another major factor, notes international student Ali Najaf, is the stress associated with the cultural shock of arriving in Canada, especially the need to learn English. Vancouver Sun 

Canada not closing the diversity gap in academe: study

There is a huge disconnect between the Canadian population, the student body and the faculty and university leadership, says University of Alberta professor Malinda Smith, referring to the lack of diversity within Canadian academe. Smith notes that while the distribution of Canada research chairs has improved within the Canada 150 Research Chairs program, these chairs still represent a very small number of the overall chairs in Canada, and the marginal improvement does nothing to change the underrepresentation of most groups. "When students don't see their background represented in the faculty body, it's one way of basically telling them university is not a place for you," says UAlberta Professor Isabel Altamirano-Jimenez. CBC

Fanshawe to explore opportunities with Peruvian institute

Fanshawe College and the Instituto del Sur (ISUR), located in Arequipa, Peru have signed an agreement to begin a formal process of opportunity exploration between the two parties. Fanshawe and ISUR will investigate specific pathways for students and faculties to move between the institutions, while also examining opportunities for leadership development, applied research, and dual programming. "Fanshawe continues to expand our geographic footprint in South America, and in particular, Peru," said Jeff Wright, Fanshawe Vice-President, Corporate Strategy and Business Development. "We're pleased to collaborate with ISUR to continue developing partnerships that support the delivery of post-secondary education and services to students and faculty in both countries." Fanshawe

NS launches Agriculture On-Farm Student Bursary

The Government of Nova Scotia has announced a new bursary that will help students interested in agriculture learn more about the sector. The Agriculture On-Farm Student Bursary Program is a part of the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, an initiative ensuring that farmers and processors have the tools they need to innovate, grow, and prosper. Agriculture Minister Keith Colwell added that the program also will help the industry meet a skilled labour shortage by connecting youth to farms. “Hiring a student has meant an extra set of hands around the farm to help with our daily tasks during the busiest months,” said Kimberley Stokdijk of Stokdijk Greenhouses. “We are eager to share our experience and knowledge with our summer students.” NS (1) | NS (2)

Niagara to purchase Niagara Corporate Business Centre

Niagara College has agreed to purchase the Niagara Corporate Business Centre (NCBC) in Niagara-on-the-Lake, which currently houses 18 businesses and agencies as well as select college administrative offices. “With its size and location right next door to our Niagara-on-the-Lake Campus, the Niagara Corporate Business Centre property provides long-term flexibility and room for expansion,” said Niagara President Dan Patterson. “As we look to the future, this acquisition will help ensure the College’s ability to accommodate the needs of our growing community, and remain among the most innovative and unique learning environments in Canada.” The college is set to assume ownership of the property on August 23. Niagara

U of T merges Forestry with Daniels Faculty

The University of Toronto has announced that it will be closing its Faculty of Forestry and moving its faculty, staff, and students to the John H Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape, and Design. The move will create a new home for forest science research, programs, and professional forestry education and will see all forestry programs continue in the new faculty. An additional $1M has been allotted to the Daniels faculty budget and five new faculty positions will be added to support cross-disciplinary forestry research. “We are excited to join forces with U of T’s forestry faculty, staff and students to continue and expand upon its outstanding programs and vital scientific research in the field of forestry,” said Daniels Dean Richard Sommer. U of T

Dal moves to rescind honourary degree from recipient convicted of sexual assault

Dalhousie University has announced that it is looking at rescinding the honourary degree given to Peter Dalglish in 2008. Dalglish was a Canadian child rights advocate who was convicted of sexually assaulting two boys under the age of 15 near Kathmandu and sentenced to 16 years in a Nepal prison. Kevin Hewitt, chair of Dal’s senate, described the convictions as “deeply disturbing” and stated that the senate is working on a process for revoking honourary degrees. CTV News

Durham College commits to principles of equity, diversity, and inclusion through signing of Dimensions charter

Durham College announced last week that it has signed the Dimensions: Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Canada charter. A Durham release states that Dimensions aims to increase equity, diversity, and inclusion in post-secondary research and helps drive deeper cultural change within the research ecosystem. “DC values, celebrates and embraces diversity in all that we do and it is incumbent on us to help enhance the post-secondary research landscape,” said Elaine Popp, Vice President, Academic at Durham. “Committing to the Dimensions charter will strengthen DC’s research capacity and help keep post-secondary research moving towards greater equity, diversity and inclusion.” Durham

Virtual reality test-taking at UAlberta looks to mitigate student exam anxiety

Occupational therapy at the University of Alberta are now able to practice for their clinical exams in a virtual setting prior to taking the test in real life, reports the Edmonton Journal. The initiative, run out of UAlberta’s Rehabilitation Robotics Lab, is known as the objective structured clinical exam (OSCE) and is the brainchild of master’s student Brendan Concannon and his supervisors, Shaniff Esmail and Mary Roduta. The Journal notes that while the program is currently only available to occupational therapy students, its creators hope that it will pave the way for virtual reality to be used to help students across healthcare fields and in other disciplines like performance arts, media, and business. Edmonton Journal

Cambrian looks to support skilled trades training for Indigenous students with new provincial funding

Two projects at Cambrian College will help Indigenous students gain valuable trades training, thanks in part to the Ontario government’s expansion of funding for the provincial Pre-Apprenticeship Training Program. An ON release says that it has invested $18.3M into the program, which marks an increase of $5M from the previous year. The first of the Cambrian programs will see Indigenous women participants take part in a 45-week Welder program, and the second will see participants from First Nations Communities on Manitoulin Island gain hands-on experience in a 26-week program focusing on skills and experience needed for General Carpentry, Electrician and Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Systems Mechanic trades. ON