Top Ten

June 25, 2020

Algonquin, IPEC launch Lighting the Fire initiative to connect college students, leaders

Algonquin College, in partnership with the Indigenous Peoples’ Education Circle (IPEC), has launched a storytelling and knowledge-sharing initiative to virtually connect college students and leaders from across the province. Lighting the Fire brings together Indigenous leaders and college students in four virtual sessions that aim to inspire and stimulate different ways of thinking, including how the province, the country, and the entire world imagine our future following the COVID-19 pandemic. “We will light ourselves a fire and have conversation,” said Ron (Deganadus) McLester, Algonquin Vice President of Truth, Reconciliation and Indigenization. “This is a moment in history when we remember there is an old way of thinking that we can leverage.” Algonquin (ON)

Queen’s receives $40M USD donation for art center revitalization

Queen’s University has received a $40M USD donation from Bader Philanthropies to revitalize the Agnes Etherington Art Centre. The donation is the largest cash donation in the university’s history and will allow Queen’s to make the centre the largest university art museum in the country. The new space will house the Queen’s extensive Bader Collection and other artworks, and will house the university’s art conservation and art history students. Queen’s has also announced that it hopes to introduce a doctorate program in art conservation. “Today’s announcement is an exciting step toward making Queen’s one of the world’s foremost leaders in arts education,” explained Queen’s Principal Patrick Deane. Whig Standard (ON)

On finding courageous leaders amid challenging times: Opinion

“Taking a leadership post in higher education has never been such a risky career proposition,” writes Dennis Barden. In the midst of major crises and large-scale anti-racism initiatives, institutional leaders will face tough decisions around downsizing, recalibrating tuition rates, and cutting academic programs. For institutions in the process of searching for such a leader, the author recommends that search committees find a way to evaluate a candidate’s ability to make tough decisions, involve faculty in the search, and consider the entirety of a leader’s abilities. “Good leaders know they may pay a price for making difficult decisions in hard times,” concludes Barden. “But each institution must ensure that the price is reasonable, or it will attract fewer and fewer good leaders.” Chronicle of Higher Education (International)

UBC Pres to lead University Climate Change Coalition

The University of British Columbia and the University of California have announced that UBC President Santa J Ono will lead the University Climate Change Coalition (UC3), effective June 30th. As leader of the UC3, Ono will coordinate the participation of university presidents and chancellors in the coalition; guide the development and execution of strategic projects; and continue coalition building with government, business, and community leaders. “I am thrilled to take on this expanded role within the UC3 coalition,” said Ono. “This is a critical moment for the future of our planet, and we are proud of our universities’ contributions to a growing global movement to curb emissions and promote sustainability.” UBC (BC)

UNB launches Catalyst program to support businesses during COVID-19 recovery

The University of New Brunswick has launched Catalyst, a program to help businesses adapt and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. The program will allow businesses to submit project related to COVID-19 recovery, and UNB students, working in consultation groups with faculty members and researchers, will respond to business needs. Support from the Government of New Brunswick will allow students to be hired for the program, providing participating businesses with expertise at no cost. “This program is an excellent opportunity for UNB to engage with and support the province in the post-pandemic recovery,” said UNB President Paul Mazerolle. UNB (NB)

SPU unveils programming changes to Faculty of Theology

Saint Paul University’s Faculty of Theology has launched program changes to revitalize their theological programming at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. Changes include renaming the program the Bachelor of Arts in Faith, Ethics and Justice, and refining undergraduate programming. SPU has also made similar changes to the Master of Arts in Theology program, including the development of a new series of graduate-level courses to explore theological questions in a contemporary context. “[These changes] enable students to broaden their theological horizons by giving them a high level of intellectual training, as well as an interdisciplinary approach,” explains SPU Director of Graduate Academic Programs Christian Dionne. SPU (ON)

RRC partners with The Maker’s Collective to offer side hustle webinar

Red River College has partnered with The Maker’s Collective to offer a webinar to support people looking to turn their skills and passions into business ventures. Manitoba Side Hustles: Side Hustle Starter Kit is a free 90-minute webinar that provides participants with the step-by-step basics of getting a new business off the ground. RRC is also offering a paid 12-week course that provides an in-depth look at the mechanics of starting a business, as well as a template and resources for setting up a new business. RRC (AB)

UAlberta signs agreement with Indian postsecondary institutions for Joint Doctoral Degree Programs

The University of Alberta has signed agreements with three Indian postsecondary institutions to create Joint Doctoral Degree Programs (JDPs). Specifically, UAlberta has partnered with IIT Bombay, IIT Kharagpur, and IIT Roorkee to allow students to undertake research at partner institutions for six months to a year. The programs will provide participants with international experience and special certification upon graduation. “These programs create new opportunities to equip doctoral students with perspectives and skills that will benefit a global society,” said UAlberta President David Turpin. “When we connect with leading international institutions such as the IITs, we’re fuelling new capacity for teaching, learning, and research.” UAlberta (AB)

Sexual abuse charges laid against McMaster professor

An associate professor at McMaster University has been arrested following complaints regarding the sexual assault of a student in 2017. McMaster Associate Professor Scott Watter has been charged by the Hamilton police with sexual assault and sexual assault causing bodily harm. McMaster spokesperson Wade Hemsworth told CBC that Watter was suspended in February after "serious allegations that could involve a number of policies including McMaster's Sexual Violence Policy." Hemsworth added that while “the privacy of those involved means we cannot provide details of the allegations or the ongoing investigation," Watter has not been allowed on campus since his February suspension. CBC | Bay Observer (ON)

Most Maritimes bachelor program graduates pursue postsecondary studies beyond their first degree

A study released by the Maritime Province Higher Education Commission has found that 65% of Maritimes students who graduated in 2012 from a bachelor degree program pursued another postsecondary program within 6 years of completing a degree. The most popular programs they pursued were graduate degrees (44%), followed by a second bachelor’s degree (17%) and a college program or apprenticeship (16%). “What is interesting is the extent to which graduates said their programs were related to their job,” said MPHEC CEO Catherine Stewart. “More than 60% of graduates chose ‘to a great extent’ when asked how much the programs they pursued after their first degree were related to their current job.” MPHEC (Release) | MPHEC (Data) (NB, NS, NL, PEI)