Top Ten

January 14, 2020

Seven Generations receives $2.25M to increase rural postsecondary education access

The Seven Generations Education Institute has received $2.25M in funding to increase rural Northwestern Ontario residents' access to postsecondary education. The Connected Classroom project, funded by the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation, will use the funding to purchase and install telepresence immersive technology videoconferencing equipment in order to connect students from Seven Generations' four campuses with Lakehead University's campus. "The support from NOHFC will enable our students to access diverse programming not typically offered in our area," said Seven Generations CEO Brent Tookenay. ON (ON )

Canadian medical students call for inclusion of climate change in curriculum

The Canadian Federation of Medical Students are asking Canadian medical schools to do more to address inadequate training related to planetary health and climate change. According to CFMS, medical students must be prepared to deal with the growing health effects of climate change, such as the spread of Lyme disease and heat-related deaths. While some argue that introducing the topic of climate change to medical school curricula will necessitate the omission of other subjects, others disagree with such an approach. "Instead of adding and subtracting, planetary health and climate change must be integrated throughout the entire curricula, so health-care providers aren't working in a silo," said Board President of the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment Courtney Howard. Times Colonist (National )

UBC students end hunger strike following institutional commitment to fossil fuel divestment

A group of students at the University of British Columbia ended their hunger strike on Friday following an institutional promise to fully divest the school's $1.7B endowment fund of fossil fuel investments. Last month, UBC's board of governors passed a resolution supporting the divestment of its endowment fund from the fossil fuel industry, but some students did not think the university's commitment to 'support' divestment went far enough. The eight participating students, all members of the climate advocacy group Extinction Rebellion UBC, ended the week-long strike following statements from UBC officials. "UBC is committed to full divestment as soon as possible, and we are taking the necessary steps to realize this now," said UBC President Santa Ono. CBC | Vancouver Sun (BC)

StatsCan labour survey reveals sector-specific growth, full-time employment gains in 2019

Statistics Canada has released the results of the 2019 Labour Force Survey, revealing employment gains in accommodations and food services, as well as the construction industry. According to the report, employment in the accommodation and food services industry grew by 2%, while construction industry employment increased by 1.2%. The report also highlights full-time employment growth in Canada that is particularly driven by growth in Ontario. Relatedly, using a report from Randstad Canada, Global News identifies blue-collar, retail-sector, health care, and housing-market related jobs as those that will be most in-demand for 2020. StatsCan | Global News (National)

Former UoGuelph coach terminated after details emerge regarding misconduct complaints

The University of Guelph has released a new statement regarding the complaints against and termination of the school's former head track and field coach Dave Scott-Thomas. During a 2019 investigation, UoGuelph received new information about an earlier 2006 complaint against the coach that revealed that he had repeatedly lied about "several significant matters." As a result of this discovery, UoGuelph terminated Scott-Thomas and states that the school would have ended its relationship with the coach in 2006 had the university been aware of this information at the time. UoGuelph has engaged a third-party company to review university policies and has offered their cooperation to Athletics' Canada's Independent Commissioner's Office investigation of Scott-Thomas. UoGuelph | CBC (ON)

Pressing pause on your administrative career

Margaret Farrar recounts her decision to decline what she describes as a "gentleman's agreement" with her institution's president that would see her extend her contract as a dean for a year so that she could seek a new deanship elsewhere. For Farrar, the decision was complicated, creating tension between her personal responsibilities with career aspirations that would see her relocate every four or five years. Although unsure if her decision to pause her administrative responsibilities would "kill her career," the author suggests that her experience sheds light on a phenomenon not often discussed in relation to administrative roles in higher ed: we know how to move "onward and upward" in our administrative careers, but not what it means to move "onward and downward," or even "onward and sideways." Chronicle of Higher Education (International)

Sources accuse BrandonU of misrepresenting nursing exam issue

After a Brandon University nursing exam was deemed “compromised,” fourteen sources approached the Brandon Sun to argue that the university is misrepresenting what occurred during the nursing exam. The Sun states that many students used an online study guide to prepare for the exam and that the “professor for the class pulled exam questions from the same study guide.” BrandonU Spokesperson Grant Hamilton declined to comment on whether the professor used an online test bank, but stated that students had not been threatened with further punishment if they file an appeal, as some sources claimed. Brandon Sun (MB)

ULethbridge receives donations to support scientific research, education

The University of Lethbridge has received donations from Power Corporation of Canada and Canada Life to support scientific research and education. Specifically, the funds will be used to develop a flexible lab and makerspace within ULethbridge's Science Common Building. The funds will also support the Prairie Research Program, an initiative that fosters different ways of viewing prairie plants and their impact on human cells. "This funding will continue to support our students and our research as we investigate these plants, seeking the chemicals that may lead to new and better treatments for eradicating cancer," said ULethbridge Professor Roy Golsteyn. ULethbridge | Lethbridge Herald (AB)

UFV unveils new building with traditional Sto:lo ceremony

The University of Fraser Valley has officially opened a newly renovated space designated for research and education. Building K, a former restaurant, now features 10 classrooms, two drop-in student labs, and one meeting room. The space will benefit staff and students from several departments. The opening of the building was celebrated by a ceremony following Sto:lo traditions: witnesses were called to observe the ceremony and share their insights about the new building and the work that went into the transformation. UFV Today (BC)

Tips for mentoring from a place of racial privilege: Opinion

In her higher ed administrative role, Amanda Cornwall was assigned an exciting new job: create programming to support 12 underrepresented minority STEM PhD students. However, the author was concerned about how her position as a "middle-aged, middle-class white woman" would affect her mentorship role. Reflecting upon the author’s work with these students, Cornwall offers six suggestions for white administrators in higher ed to consider when mentoring and advocating for minority students: do not try to supply all mentoring supports alone; learn more about best practices in mentoring; ask for feedback; don't avoid difficult topics; provide practical help as well as emotional support an encouragement; and be open about your position, your awareness of your privilege, and how you navigate it. Inside Higher Ed (International)