Top Ten

March 10, 2020

Algonquin launches digital campus

Algonquin College has launched AC online, a digital-only campus designed to meet increased demands for flexible, personalized, and quality educational content. The online campus will feature more than 65 online programs, including both part-time and full-time programs, and 800 online courses. The platform will cater to students of all demographics, including both recent high school graduates and working professionals. “From the moment a learner contacts us about online education, to the moment they graduate,” said Algonquin President Claude Brulé, “they will receive the same support as someone who studies at any of our other campuses.” Algonquin (ON)

SFU launches cybersecurity specialization for Professional Master's Program in Computer Science

Simon Fraser University has launched a cybersecurity specialization as part of their Professional Master's Program in Computer Science. Beginning in September 2020, the program will educate students in topics such as cyber ethics, cloud and network security, ethical hacking, secure coding, and applied cryptography through lab work and a co-op term. "In consultation with global leaders in the cybersecurity market, including Fortinet and Palo Alto Networks, we have developed a leading-edge curriculum with a strong applied orientation, emphasizing hands-on training over academic research to meet industry and government needs," said SFU Professor Uwe Glässer. SFU (BC)

MQF petitions to have French-language Bill extended to cégeps

The Mouvement Québec français has launched a petition that calls for the provision of Québec Bill 101—the language charter that makes French the official language of the province’s government, courts, and workplaces—to be extended to the province's cégeps. The Montréal Gazette states that the matter has resurfaced due to controversies surrounding the opening of an English-language campus of the Cégep de la Gaspésie et des Îles and the plans for a bilingual cégep in Vaudreuil-Dorion. The petition states that “the non-application of Bill 101 in cégeps is the largest open door to the Anglicization of Quebec” and that “enrolments in English-language pre-university programs in Montreal are on their way to overtaking those in French cégeps.” Montréal Gazette (QC)

McMaster launches continuing education program for older adult learners

McMaster University's Continuing Education has launched the McMaster Learning for 55+ program, an initiative that gives older adults access to courses developed specifically for them. Classes for the program will run weekly over a four- to six-week period on topics such as art, literature, science, health, wellness, business, politics and technology. “At McMaster Continuing Education, we believe that the journey of learning never stops,” said McMaster Director of Continuing Education Lorraine Carter. “The courses offered in McMaster Learning for 55+ have been designed to engage and enrich the lives of the mature learner and contribute to their mental and emotional wellness.” McMaster (ON)

Careful language choices can help leaders achieve goals

Communication may be the most potent tool leaders employ, write Virginia KB Lehmann, Jarvis Smallfield, CK Gunsalus, Nicholas C Burbules, Robert A Easter, and Jeremy D Meuser. Many leaders may wonder, however, when one should put the focus on oneself as a leader and when to put it on others. To help make this decision, the authors recommend considering six points for the successful communication of one's message: understanding the power and richness of communication; strengthening identification with the organization; using we versus I to promote organizational identification; appreciating the context in which communications are received; being aware of the problem of over-identification with an organization; and reflecting on communication strategies. Inside Higher Ed (International)

St Clair unveils 5G-ready technology

St Clair College has unveiled emerging technologies that will support a 5G network when it becomes available in Canada. Following institutions such as the University of British Columbia and the University of Waterloo in developing on-campus 5G initiatives, St Clair notes that the new network will allow quicker data transformation, better cyber security, and advancements in virtual reality among other benefits. “When we look at 5G, we have speed, we have bandwidth, we have no latency and we have a reliable network that allows us to now do all kinds of things that we never even dreamed up before,” said St Clair Director of Applied Research and Development Peter Wawrow. St Clair (ON)

SK invests in Enhanced Career Bridging program delivered at Sask Polytech

The Government of Saskatchewan has increased funding to Saskatchewan Polytechnic’s Enhanced Career Bridging program to help transition unemployed individuals to the workforce. The program, delivered by Sask Polytechnic and other partners, offers practical instruction, employability skills, and work experience to participants that come from groups that may be under-represented or facing barriers to employment in the SK labour market. “Enhanced Career Bridging programs align with the priorities identified in Saskatchewan’s Growth Plan and our government’s commitment to promote employment opportunities for under-represented job seekers,” said SK Immigration and Career Training Minister Jeremy Harrison. SK (SK)

Demand for skilled seafarers rises as a large portion of workforce nears retirement

An increasing demand for seafarers is encouraging Canadian postsecondary institutions to work with industry officials to attract students to the profession. In 2019, the Seafarers International Union reported a growing need for skilled workers in the industry, as 20% of its membership will likely retire in five years. Nova Scotia Community College's Nautical Institute student Shawn Murley told CBC that the federal government is offering incentives for students to study in the trade and that students are receiving lucrative offers from companies for post-graduation jobs. "You have this huge gap of people now that are deciding they're going to retire and we just can't fill that gap as fast enough as we'd like to," said Atlantic Pilotage Authority Captain Gary O'Donnell. CBC (NS)

Navigating job transitions as a person with a disability

The job market is an intimidating space full of uncertainty, write Brian J Rybarczyk and Allison Gose. "Add to that a disability and the navigation of the professional world becomes even more daunting." To address these specific challenges, Rybarczyk and Gose provide job search advice to graduate students and career advisers, such as ensuring disabled graduate students receive affirmation that they belong in higher ed and engaging in conversations around the disclosure of disabilities in job interviews. The authors recommend that career advisors need to learn the language of diversity and available campus resources, as well as how to support students during job searches. Inside Higher Ed (International)

Canadian schools cancel study abroad programs, close doors in response to COVID-19

New challenges are mounting for postsecondary institutions in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak. Cancellations of study abroad programs in countries and areas experiencing community transmission of COVID-19 have created challenges for students who are already abroad, according to CBC, such as University of Calgary student Tyson Schmidt. Wilfrid Laurier University has suspended all travel to China and Iran on university business, including study. Conestoga College has added hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes to student spaces, offices, and classrooms; but also noted that it is facing a shortage of those items. CDI College's North York campus closed last Wednesday to conduct a preventative sanitization after learning that a spouse of a student tested positive for COVID-19. CBC (1) | CBC (2) | CTV

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