Top Ten

January 30, 2020

Initiatives launched nation-wide to address postsecondary students' mental wellness challenges

Institutions across the country have launched initiatives to address mental health challenges experiences by postsecondary students. The Alliance of BC Students announced their support of the Government of British Columbia's development of a 24/7 mental health counselling and referral service. The University of St Michael's College in the University of Toronto launched a first-term check-in program which matches students with professors to discuss challenges adjusting to university life. Researchers at the University of Regina have launched a study that aims to address gaps in mental health services for Indigenous university students. ABCS | St Mike's | URegina (National) 

UofT receives over $4M to address nicotine-related issues

University of Toronto researchers have received more than $4M in funding for two projects that address "old and new nicotine problems." The first project, All Together Now!, will receive up to $2.8M to investigate the higher-than-average smoking rates among the LGBTQ community, while the second project will receive $1.3M over three years to address vaping among youth and young adults. The funding announcements were timed to coincide with National Non-Smoking Week. “I want to encourage the thousands of Canadians who will take their first steps toward quitting smoking,” said federal health minister Patty Hajdu. “The projects we are supporting today ... will better help them as they make this positive change in their lives – and encourage others to follow in the same footsteps.” UofT (ON)

Lethbridge, ULethbridge, MHC create collaboration principles for future initiatives

Lethbridge College, the University of Lethbridge, and Medicine Hat College have formally committed to exploring innovative ways for approaching future joint initiatives. The three institutions have agreed on eight Regional Collaboration Principles that consider student needs, regional economic goals, industry needs, Indigenous community priorities, southern Alberta communities’ needs, and provincial government goals. The schools will use these principles to guide future partnerships affecting administration, services, and programs. “This agreement formalizes the way our institutions have worked together, and we look forward to finding new ways build on this tradition of innovation and collaboration," said Lethbridge President Paula Burns. Lethbridge | ULethbridge (AB)

RSU files statement of claim with ON Superior Court of Justice in a bid to restore funding

The Ryerson Students' Union has filed a statement of claim against Ryerson University regarding the university's agreement termination announced earlier this week. The claim on behalf of the RSU includes requests for damages in the amount of $2.7M for breach of contract, release of the student fees withheld by the University, aggravated punitive damages in the amount of $100K, a declaration that the University is in breach of its agreement with the Ryerson Students’ Union, and the RSU’s legal costs in bringing this claim. RSU | Globe and Mail (Subscription required) (ON)

VIU, Camosun partner to deliver career pathways trade program for Indigenous peoples

Vancouver Island University and Camosun College have partnered to deliver a new career pathways trades program for Indigenous peoples. The schools will receive nearly $1.4M over two years to create the ITA Indigenous Peoples in Trades Training initiative that will provide exploratory trades skills foundations courses to 160 participants. “Camosun is committed to the continued relationship with Indigenous learners as they pursue fulfilling and meaningful careers in the trades,” said Camosun Dean, School of Trades and Technology Eric Sehn. “Hands-on, employment-ready skills equip graduates from Camosun to contribute to the economic sustainability of local families, communities and region.” VIU (BC)

Loyalist unveils renovated Northumberland Wing to support collaboration, experiential learning

Loyalist College has officially opened its renovated Northumberland Wing, a space where students in the health, human services, social development, and public safety programs can collaborate on projects and applied research. The renovation was made possible through a $2.4M investment from the Government of Canada and Government of Ontario. "In the updated Northumberland Wing, where students collaborate on interprofessional projects and applied research, we have been able to extend our program offerings, learning experiences and educational outcomes to respond to the labour market and drive socio-economic growth in the Bay of Quinte region,” said Loyalist President Ann Marie Vaughan. Loyalist (ON )

UQAM launches accelerated disaster risk reduction programs

The Université du Québec á Montréal has launched a graduate program and a Diplôme d'études supérieures spécialisées (DESS) focused on disaster risk reduction. Beginning fall 2020, the programs will train specialists in preparedness, response, and recovery practices for disaster situations. The two programs are distinguished by an accelerated approach to learning. While the 15-week graduate program covers the foundations of disaster risk reduction, the DESS program builds on this training with a six-week work placement or research position. UQAM (QC)

UWindsor launches free patent certification training program

The University of Windsor has launched a four-day, intensive training course for law students that will provide law students with fundamental, practical knowledge of the key aspects of patent practice. Described in a UWindsor statement as a first of its kind in Canada, the Certificate in Patent Practice is offered free of charge to Canadian law students. Successful participants will receive a certification in patent practice. “The course will not only help to achieve ISED’s goal of building IP capacity across Canada,” said UWindsor Professor Wissam Aoun, “but will also fill an essential gap in Canadian legal education.” UWindsor (ON)

UVic leads $1M partnership project to de-escalate the global increase of forest wildfires

The University of Victoria has announced a $1M, four-year Theme Partnership Project that aims to de-escalate increasing forest wildfires while strengthening the development to a forest-based bioeconomy in British Columbia. The project team includes scientists from the Canadian Forest Service, the University of British Columbia, and the USDA Forest Service. “We envisage a future where the goals of fire risk reduction, bioeconomy, emissions reduction and increased resilience of the forests to climate change, can be quantified, evaluated, managed, and achieved,” said project co-principal investigator Lori Daniels. “Being able to share our Canadian and US expertise, analytical tools and data is incredibly important for ensuring the resilience of our Pacific Northwest forests, including the coastal, mountain and boreal forest landscapes.” UVic (BC)

WLU launches podcast studio

Wilfrid Laurier University has launched podcasting studio open to students, staff, and instructors as a teaching and learning tool, as well as to public podcasters in the community. Part of WLU's Creativity Hub project, the podcast studio allows aspiring podcasters access to professional recording equipment and expert knowledge through the studio's podcaster-in-residence, Avery Moore Kloss. “The podcast studio offers practical experience to students, faculty and the wider community by providing access to equipment, resources and skills development in an emerging creative medium,” said WLU coordinator of the Creativity Hub project Tamara Louks. WLU (ON)