Top Ten

August 18, 2020

Canada invests $140M into 182 CRCs

The Government of Canada has announced an investment of $140M into 182 new and renewed Canada Research Chairs. The program, which is entering its 20th year, also received $4.6M from the Canada Foundation for Innovation in new funding for research infrastructure. “Innovation, research and discovery are key factors in maintaining and growing Canada’s socio-economic well-being, to benefit all Canadians,” states a public release. “Canada Research Chairs choose Canada to pursue their ambitious research goals, build their teams and maintain Canada’s position as a global leader in research excellence.” The release also states that a second cycle of funding will be announced this year. Canada (National)

Toronto postsecondary institutions cancel in-person convocation

Four postsecondary institutions in Toronto – Ryerson University, Seneca College, the University of Toronto, and York University – have announced that they will not hold an in-person convocation ceremony this Fall. The decision stems from the ongoing public health concerns resulting from COVID-19 and restrictions on public gatherings. York stated that it will hold a virtual ceremony where students will receive a package that includes their diploma, cap and tassel, and other items. “While the convocation ceremony and celebration will not be the same as in years past,” wrote York President Rhonda L Lenton, “the hard work and success of our graduates are not diminished in any way.” York | The Star (Subscription Required) (ON)

NSCAD U board expresses disappointment with misinformation as group calls for changes

NSCAD University students and faculty recently rallied outside the university to call for the Board of Governors to step down and for the reinstatement of former president Aoife Mac Namara. Among other demands, the Friends of NSCAD group are asking for provincial intervention if the Board does not step down voluntarily. "I think it has brought to students' attention that there is definitely a disconnect between the students as the largest group of stakeholders, and the board of governors," said group member Brody Weaver. The NSCAD Board of Governors has issued a statement addressing the situation, adding that reinstatement of Mac Namara “is not under consideration” and expressing that the board has “been disappointed by the amount of misinformation circulating online and, in the media, and has been disturbed by some of the personal attacks.” NSCAD | CBC (NS)

TRU takes on national nursing project with CNF, CNA

Thompson Rivers University’s School of Nursing, with the support of the Canadian Nurses Foundation and the Canadian Nurses Association, is creating a web-based network where newly graduated nurses can go for support. Nursing the Future gives registered psychiatric and licensed practical nurses a place where they can share information and connect socially as they enter the profession. “Nursing the Future is a wonderful initiative to support the transition of our graduates into the profession and to help them develop a strong professional identity,” said TRU Nursing Dean Rani Srivistava. “The impact of this work will be significant in terms of positive outcomes for the retention and engagement of nurses in the workforce.” TRU | Castanet (BC)

AU PowerED, Banff Centre partner to move project online

Athabasca University’s PowerED and the Banff Centre have partnered to move one of the Centre’s core programs in Indigenous Leadership online. The program, Project Management for Indigenous Organizations, translates the language of project management into the systems and worldview of Indigenous wisdom in order to find a common understanding between the theory and the application of it in communities. “PowerED™ is excited to partner with Banff Centre to transform one of their face-to-face courses into an enriched, high-quality digital offering” said AU PowerED™ Director Jessica Scott. “We look forward to collaborating with Banff Centre on this initiative, as well as any future initiatives that may meet the needs of the learners, and that will bring together the strengths of both of our organizations.” AU (AB)

Holland College introduces esports club, forms Canadian eMotorsports Network

Holland College has introduced a new esports club and formed the Canadian eMotorsports Network. “[Launching the club is] a no-brainer because there is a lot of interest," said club organizer Daniel Cudmore, who works in the college’s athletics department. "You can do it remotely. You do not have to be on a basketball court or a soccer field. You can do it from home or do it from your campus." Racers are currently required to have a simulator setup, complete with steering wheel and pedals, and all races are streamed live online. Cudmore expressed hope that the college expands their esports offerings in the future and hosts larger tournaments for emotorsports across Canada. CBC (PEI)

UManitoba ordered to pay $286K to former music professor

The University of Manitoba has been ordered to pay $286K to former jazz professor Steve Kirby. Kirby left the school in 2017 after an internal investigation report found he repeatedly made inappropriate sexual comments and contact with a female student. Kirby filed a union grievance after he left his tenured position, and CBC states that an arbitrator found that the university violated Kirby’s privacy. CBC | Winnipeg Free Press (MB)

STU offers advanced standing program for grade 12 students

St Thomas University has announced that it is offering an Advanced Standing Pilot Program for Grade 12 high school students in New Brunswick and Maritime Canada. The program will allow high school students to take up to two introductory university courses on a part-time basis for academic credit. The courses available include topics such as communications, economics, and psychology. STU states that the program has been made possible by the implementation of advanced remote learning tools for the upcoming semester, which provide more flexibility in terms of engaging with course content. STU (NB)

UdeMontréal Saint-Hyacinthe campus to build ultramodern operation room for animals

The Université de Montréal’s Saint-Hyacinthe campus will soon sport a centre with an ultramodern operating room for animals. The Centre d’excellence en médecine interventionnelle will enable veterinarians to train in surgical interventions and update their skills. The Journal de Montréal reports that the operation room will focus on cats and dogs, but will also have capacity for birds, reptiles, and more exotic animals. The $2M project is expected to start in Spring 2021 and was funded by UdeMontréal and the Royal Canin company. Journal de Montréal (QC)

Student associations and institutions announce online, virtual orientations

Several postsecondary institutions in Canada have announced virtual orientations and frosh weeks for their incoming students this Fall. “I think that the student experience for university students will definitely be different this year,” said Ontario University Student Alliance President Julia Pereira, “I know that student associations and student leaders … across the province are trying to ensure that the student experience is not tainted." Student organizations and staff at universities such as McGill University, Carleton University, the University of Alberta, and the University of Ottawa described the virtual orientations that they are planning to hold for students. The activities include virtual escape rooms, Zoom-facilitated meet-and-greets; and weekly online game nights after Frosh week to help students get to know their classmates. National Post | CTV News Ottawa (National)