Top Ten

September 19, 2019

Institutions must address the environmental impact of academic air travel: Opinion

A recent survey conducted among Université de Montréal professors revealed that their annual air travel alone constituted nearly 85% of the average Canadian’s yearly CO2 emissions. Julie Talbot and Julien Arsenault write that if institutions are going to address the environmental footprint of academic air travel, they might need to explore solutions such as individual commitments to less air travel, fees for conference presenters who travel by air, and video conferencing as some potential solutions. Although the environmental impacts and the efficacy of current solutions are unknown, the authors conclude that, “it is now up to institutions to determine how to adapt their realities to these impacts and to researchers to adopt measures put in place.” Vancouver Sun (National)

UBC Jewish studies receives $1M donation to expand education, research

The University of British Columbia has received a $1M donation from the Diamond Foundation that will be used to expand on-campus Jewish Studies programming and international research. The funds will also supplement the Diamond Chair in Jewish Law and Ethics, a position that “has enabled UBC scholars to gain insight and understanding of how Jewish law and ethics are manifest in the modern world,” explains UBC’s Dean of the Faculty of Arts Gage Averill. Current Diamond Chair Gregg Gardner tells UBC that Diamond’s donation will enable local and international outreach, including “public talks at Hillel BC and academic lectures at Cambridge and Yale universities.” UBC (BC)

UN’s HeForShe to assemble students for gender equality, tour universities across Canada

As part of the United Nation’s HeForShe movement, several Canadian universities will be getting visits from #GetFree bus tour this week. Starting with the University of Waterloo, the tour brings together global thought leaders to engage students regarding gender equality issues, focusing on the role that young men and boys can play in ending gender inequality and promoting postsecondary enrolment in STEM subject for young women. Later this week, the bus will also visit McGill University, Concordia University of Edmonton, the University of Calgary, and the British Columbia Institute of Technology. United Nations HeForShe (National)

SaskPolytech engineering labs receive over $1M for equipment, training

Saskatchewan Polytechnic has received over $1M from its long-standing partner Spartan Controls to provide new equipment to the school’s Instrumentation Engineering and Power Engineering Technology training labs. Alongside the acquisition of new technology, the funds will be used over a ten-year period to service the new equipment; provide technological training to Moose Jaw and Saskatoon campus students, faculty, and staff; and to support student awards. SaskPolytech reports that the donation will ensure that future students “have access to the most up to date industry equipment to enhance their applied learning opportunities.” SaskPolytech (SK)

Okanagan, Mohawk partner across provinces to collaborate on aerospace research, programs

Okanagan College in British Columbia has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Mohawk College in Ontario to collaborate on aerospace programs and research. “The new joint commitment could see cross-Canada opportunities for training, internships and cooperative education, as well as collaborative applied research and potential new programs,” reports Okanagan. “It makes great sense for our colleges to find innovative ways to work together for the benefit our students, our programs and our industry partners,” adds Mohawk VP Academic Paul Armstrong. Okanagan (BC)

U of T joins global fight to protect media freedoms with new course

The University of Toronto’s International Human Rights Law program is joining global efforts to protect media freedom by launching a new course called the Media Freedom Model Laws Project. The course aims to respond to a rise in attacks against media freedom within authoritarian and democratic governments, examining “how laws related to espionage and official secrets affect news reporting, in Canada and abroad, and how they can be narrowed, or rewritten,” reports the Globe and Mail. With the creation of the course, U of T joins the ranks of King’s College London, Columbia University in New York, and Korea University in drafting model laws to guard media freedom. Globe and Mail (ON)

Loyalist partners with U of T Scarborough to create degree pathways

Loyalist College has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the University of Toronto Scarborough to create two new admissions pathways between the institutions. The College to University Pathway will enable qualified graduates of Loyalist’s General Arts & Science diploma program to continue their studies in an Honour Bachelor of Art degree Program at U of T Scarborough. The Redirect Pathway will provide an alternative route for students who did not meet the admission requirements for programs offered at U of T Scarborough or the requirements of Loyalist’s General Arts & Science diploma program to apply as a direct entry applicant through OUAC. “As the cost of tuition and living is much less at Loyalist, students save money by starting in Belleville before they transfer to U of T Scarborough,” explains Loyalist President Ann Marie Vaughan. Loyalist (ON)

CBU, MUN partner to expand Indigenous Youth mentorship program

Cape Breton University has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Memorial University’s Grenfell Campus to provide a provincial version of CBU’s In.Business: A Mentorship Program for Indigenous Youth. The program aims to connect Indigenous secondary students in grades 10-12 with Indigenous business mentors to give them a glimpse into postsecondary campus life and the benefits of business education. “By bringing this program to campus, we are enhancing opportunities for Indigenous youth and strengthening our ties to Indigenous communities,” explains Grenfell VP Jeff Keshen. Nation Talk (NS, NL)

John Abbott introduces new dramatic arts program for mature students

John Abbott College’s continuing education program has launched a new dramatic arts program geared towards mature students. The Montreal Gazette reports that the program, ACTion: Dramatic Arts 50+, is “starting slow,” currently offering one beginning course in playwriting and one in acting. The program’s creative coordinator Christine Davet speculates that ACTion courses might be attractive to persons wanting to earn more money by writing short studies or taking small acting jobs. Moreover, “ACTion classes will be more relaxed and [will allow you to] be with your peers,” concludes Davet. Montreal Gazette (QC)

Fleming announces new geothermal systems program, addresses need for geothermal installers

Fleming College has announced the creation of a new Geothermal Systems Program to begin in January 2020. The two-semester program, which will be delivered between Fleming’s Frost and Sutherland campuses, will offer hands-on training in drilling; installation of a geothermal loop field; and the installation, repair, and maintenance of hydronic systems. Fleming’s Dean of the School of Environmental and Natural Resource Sciences Brett Goodwin notes that the program “focuses on a specific set of skills and knowledge that will play a direct role in the mitigation of climate change.” Fleming (ON)