Top Ten

January 6, 2020

UWaterloo, Rogers partner to deliver first 5G smart campus in central Canada

The University of Waterloo has announced a three-year, multimillion-dollar partnership with Rogers Communications to advance 5G research in the Toronto-Waterloo tech corridor. The university states that this will be the first 5G smart campus in central Canada that will test network infrastructure, frequencies, and applications. The partnership will also focus on the creation of 5G research in the areas of engineering, network design, applied mathematics, and artificial intelligence. “Combining the experience of Rogers with the research and entrepreneurial talent at the University of Waterloo will empower faculty and students to make discoveries and build new companies that will help us further contribute to the economies of our region and the country as a whole,” said UWaterloo President Feridun Hamdullahpur. UWaterloo | Financial Post (ON)

Poet withdraws from URegina talk following controversy

Poet George Elliot Clarke has withdrawn from a University of Regina lecture amidst concerns regarding his history with the murderer of Pamela George, an Indigenous woman. Groups, including the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations, called upon URegina to cancel the event. FSIN Chief Bobby Cameron stated that “there was no consultation with First Nations elders or leadership in the area about the potential subject matter.” CTV News reports that URegina stated cancelling the event “would go against its principles.” Clarke later withdrew from the event and apologized for the anguish he had caused George’s family in an emailed statement, adding “my purpose in my talk was to discuss the role of poets in dealing with social issues, but that interest has been lost in the current controversy.” CBC | APTN National News | CTV  (SK)

Internal documents reveal why NB universities are graduating fewer nurses

New documents attained by CBC from the New Brunswick Nurses Union suggest that poor communication and rising costs speak to why NB universities are graduating fewer nurses despite both demand and governmental incentives. Last month, NB’s auditor general questioned the 2005 agreement between the province, University of New Brunswick, and the University of Moncton to graduate more nurses, asking why $96M in incentives had been handed out to universities without the promised increase in the number of nursing students. However, internal documents demonstrate that the funding provided to UNB and the UMoncton was not only insufficient for increasing enrollment, but also fell short of the amounts needed to retain the students the institutions already had, reports CBC. CBC (NB)

$8.9M bus terminal plan for McMaster halted amidst LRT cancellation

McMaster University’s plan for a multimillion-dollar transportation hub faces an uncertain future after the Government of Ontario’s cancellation of the City of Hamilton’s Light Rail Transit project. MTO Communications Advisor Callum Elder suggested that the $8.9M McMaster bus terminal project could be part of upcoming transportation funding discussions. “We need more information and we’re sure that we will find out more in the coming days on how we can work together to find the best transit solutions,” said McMaster spokesperson Wade Hemsworth. Hamilton Spectator | Global News (ON)

BrandonU expands co-op program to include all Science programs, more Arts

Brandon University has expanded its co-operative education opportunities with the approval of co-ops for eight new majors across the Faculties of Arts and Science. “We’re blazing new trails for students to further personalize degrees with majors that usually don’t have Co-op or work-integrated learning opportunities,” said BrandonU’s Acting Dean of Arts Lisa Robson. The university states that it is the only university in the province to offer co-op through all Science majors and most Arts majors. “In the coming year, we plan to add Co-op to even more majors and to keep expanding opportunities for students to make their degrees work for them,” said BrandonU Co-operative Program Coordinator Cora Dupuis. BrandonU (MB)

MITT named Check Point Secure Academy, promotes ICT training, Centre

The Manitoba Institute of Trades and Technology was recently announced as Check Point Software Technologies’ first Check Point Secure Academy in Canada. The institute has also announced the creation of a Cyber Security Technical Centre of Excellence and has received multi-year support from the province. To be completed by 2022, the new centre will aim to develop cybersecurity solutions through applied research, industry upskilling, and the development of a virtual learning environment. “Through partnerships we recently signed with the U of W and UCN,” said MITT President Ray Karasevich, “we will be able to reach more students across Manitoba and create opportunities to expand education in cyber security and network technologies across the province.” MITT | (MB)

NS announces new training requirements for massage therapists

The Government of Nova Scotia has announced new legislation that requires any person using the terms “registered massage therapist” or “massage therapist” to meet new requirements or face hefty fines. Requirements include completing 2,200 hours of training from a recognized institution, having insurance, and being a part of one of three professional associations that operate in the province. Previously, anyone could offer massage therapy services and accept payment, but only registered therapists could bill with insurance companies. “Title protection legislation provides an additional layer of security [...] ensuring that the massage therapist has the proper training and that they have proper certification," said Massage Therapists' Association of Nova Scotia President Amy-Lynne Graves. CBC | (NS)

Should we get rid of academic prizes? Opinion

Michael J Kramer writes that academic prizes feed an individualist ethos that glosses over the shared labour, diverse knowledge, and multiple contributions that fuel academic inquiry. Kramer recommends three ways scholars might repurpose the labour, energy, and money dedicated to academic prizes in order to broaden appreciation for the wider range of contributions scholars make. In particular, he suggests paying more attention to collective needs and possibilities; increasing teaching awards; and broadening the ways appreciation is demonstrated at conferences. “Our individual work relates, fundamentally, to our shared livelihoods,” concludes Kramer. “We should prize that more.” Inside Higher Ed (International)

How to improve education, training of Canadian engineers: Opinion

“How can Canadian engineers [...] bring our expertise and innovation to the world stage to help with sustainable development goals?” asks University of Guelph Dean of Engineering and Physical Sciences Mary Wells. Wells outlines the critical role engineers play in helping solve societal challenges. She then goes on to offer four suggestions as to how Canadian engineers might be better positioned to address social issues: dissolve boundaries between teaching, learning, and community engagement; make engineering accreditation more flexible to accommodate new curricula; increase government investments in engineer education and training; and broaden the appeal of engineering to a wider audience. The Star | (National)

Homeward Bound Leadership project aims to create global network of women leaders in STEMM

Four Canadian academics have recently returned from the Homeward Bound Leadership project, a three-week international leadership program that aims to increase the impact of women academics through the creation of global networks. "[The program's] goal is over a 10-year period to train 1000 women from around the world to create this network of leaders that can help try to figure out how we can solve some of these critical problems facing our planet,” explained Laurentian University Professor Tammy Eger. Eger is focusing on creating a scholarship for the program that would make participation more financially viable for Indigenous peoples, peoples from regions impacted by climate change, and others who may be unable to afford their portion of the program. CBC (National)