Top Ten

February 24, 2020

Centennial to construct zero-carbon, mass timber building inspired by Indigenous concept

Centennial College has announced the construction of a new building that will embody the school's commitment to Truth and Reconciliation and sustainable design. To be created in partnership with EllisDon, DIALOG, and Smoke Architecture, the new building is described by Centennial as "the first zero-carbon, mass timber higher-education building in the country." The building design will be based on the Indigenous concept of "two-eyed seeing," or viewing the world through the lens of Indigenous knowledge and the lens of western knowledge. “We wanted to raise the bar for future post-secondary projects,” said Centennial President Craig Stephenson. “At Centennial we view sustainability, inclusivity and Indigeneity as wholly interconnected ideas and we wanted a building that demonstrates that crucial relationship.”  Centennial  (ON)

ILAC acquires CTC, Sterling; boosts program offerings

The International Language Academy of Canada has announced the acquisition of Canadian Tourism College and Sterling College. The amalgamation is part of the development of ILAC's higher education division, allowing the school to add programs in tourism, hospitality, business, and nursing to its offerings. “We are excited to partner with the highly talented team at Canadian Tourism College and Sterling College,” said ILAC CEO Jonathan Kolber. “ILAC continues to focus on providing best-in-class English language learning and we believe this partnership complements our existing pathway partnerships, offering a wider selection of services to our students.”  ILAC  | Sterling  (BC)

UofGuelph institutes university-wide accommodation policy for student-reservists

The University of Guelph has created a university policy regarding academic accommodations for students serving in the Canadian Forces. The Serving Scholars program, described by UofGuelph as the first of its kind in Ontario, will allow student-reservists to defer or write exams early, or renegotiate due dates for assignments if there are conflicts with their training. “We want military members to feel assured that their two roles of students and soldiers will not come into conflict with one another,” said UofGuelph Professor John Walsh. “We don’t want them worrying about exams while they are in active duty in potentially dangerous situations. These new rules will give them that assurance.” UofGuelph  (ON)

Confronting anti-Black racism in Canadian academia

It is critical to confront the histories and multiplicity of Black lives in Canada, writes University of Alberta Professor Malinda S Smith. In this piece, Smith decries what she describes as "the tyranny of low expectations and the debilitating lens through which the stories of Black scholars are too-often told." To counter racist and colonial knowledges and histories, Smith provides a brief history of three trailblazing Canadian Black women. "These stories defy single narratives that bring into being an idea of Blackness that fits, or is made to fit, the stereotypes of Black-as-lack or being out of place, underlining instead the historical complexity of the lived realities and struggles of Black Canadians pursuing higher education," concludes Smith.  FHSS  (National)

Fanshawe, Bioenterprise partner to bring expertise to agri-food

Fanshawe College has signed an agreement with Bioenterprise that will support new SMEs in the agri-food sector. Through the partnership, Bioenterprise will connect innovative companies across Canada to the technology and resources available through Fanshawe’s Centre for Advanced Research and Innovation in Biotechnology labs. “Fanshawe's CARIB labs are at the forefront of proof of concept and product testing, two key areas that growing businesses need to achieve success,” says Colin Yates, chair of the Centre for Research and Innovation. “We connect these businesses to the laboratory services, expertise and partners they need to bring their ideas to market.”  Fanshawe  (ON)

Universities consider accommodations for students whose applications are affected by coronavirus

Several Canadian universities are taking measures to accommodate prospective Chinese international students after language tests were cancelled in China due to the coronavirus outbreak. Last week, it was announced that the International English Language Testing System and the Test of English as a Foreign Language announced that in China, have been suspended through the end of March. Some schools are extending their deadlines for proficiency test submissions, while others plan to allow students affected by the exam cancellations to demonstrate their English skills online.   Winnipeg Free Press  | Globe and Mail  (National)

ENAP, Senghor d’Alexandrie partner on dual-credential pathway

École nationale d’administration publique and Université Senghor d'Alexandrie have established a new pathway partnership. The dual-program pathway will allow students to obtain both a Masters in Development through Senghor d'Alexandrie, an institution with campuses in Africa and Europe, and a Masters in Public Administration from ENAP. The partnership is aligned with Senghor d’Alexandrie’s mission of strengthening the skills of executives and decision-makers for the development of Africa. The program is expected to launch in Fall 2020.   ENAP  (QC)

Niagara, New Zealand’s EIT establish wine education partnership

Niagara College and New Zealand’s Eastern Institute of Technology have embarked on a new partnership that will allow Niagara graduates to continue their viticulture studies in New Zealand. Graduates of Niagara’s Winery and Viticulture Technician diploma program will be eligible to complete EIT’s three-year Bachelor of Viticulture and Wine Science degree in one and a half years. Students will have the opportunity to experience new wine styles and viticulture practices in Hawke’s Bay, one of the oldest and largest wine regions in New Zealand. “This new pathway with EIT is another example of NC’s commitment to ensure our students are offered unique international opportunities at all stages of their NC learning journey,” said NC’s senior vice president, International, Sean Kennedy, “including after graduation.”  Niagara  (ON)

UQAM reconsidering policy regarding Indigenous self-identification

The Université du Québec à Montréal has told the Journal de Montréal that it will not require instructors to possess Indigenous status to teach in the school's Indigenous studies program. UQAM told the Journal that it was considering the possibility of reserving the positions of professors and lecturers in the program for Indigenous persons. This consideration follows the termination of two UQAM lecturers following the questioning of the instructors' Indigenous identities. UQAM wished to clarify, however, that the school's reconsideration of its policies only relates to the question of self-declaration.  Journal de Montréal  | Journal de Montréal  (QC)

Reading, writing skills are in constant development: how can academic mentors help?

Learning to read and write is a continuing, lifelong process, writes David A Sanders. However, the author argues that too many mentors in higher ed assume that learning these tasks are accomplished early in a student's education. To ensure that upper-year and graduate students are getting proper writing support, Sanders offers several tips for mentors, including: giving students practice assignments such as a writing a review article, and encouraging students to publish drafts of articles on a preprint server to attain feedback. "Far too many senior scientists believe that their trainees either already possess appropriate reading and writing skills or will somehow manage to acquire them on their own," concludes Sanders.  Inside Higher Ed  (International)