Top Ten

September 25, 2020

CICan marks Global Goals Week with three new initiatives

Colleges and Institutes Canada is celebrating Global Goals Week by announcing three new initiatives focused on helping Canada make progress towards the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The first initiative, the ImpAct Internships program will help employers advance SDG-aligned initiatives and help youth gain the critical skills essential for the 21st century. The second initiative, the SDG Toolkit for Canadian Colleges and Institutes, is an open educational resource for postsecondary institutions that provides tips and resources for implementing SDGs. The third initiative is a new category that has been added to CICan’s Awards of Excellence program that will recognize and celebrate institutions that show leadership in the implementation and advancement of SDGs. CICan (National)

UWindsor, St Clair sign MOUs with TELUS to become 5G campuses

The University of Windsor and St Clair College have signed MOUs with TELUS to become 5G campuses. TELUS will install 5G equipment on the UWindsor campus and St Clair’s south Windsor campus, enabling campus communities to access the network, which will have increased speed and capacity. The technology will be foundational to the development of emerging tech sectors such as industrial automation and digital healthcare. “This technology will empower our students to take their studies to the next level,” said St Clair President Patti France. “Having a connected campus with 5G technology, will allow students and faculty to conduct cutting edge research in the fields of automotive manufacturing and healthcare.” St Clair | UWindsor (ON)

Arts curriculum does not meet the needs of arts graduates: Opinion

Arts curriculum no longer meets the needs of those graduating from arts programs, Eric Lapin says. The author says that the needs of those in arts programs have been changing for some time, but that arts curricula have continued to prepare students for careers that are increasingly unavailable. Lapin argues that though artists have continued to create art throughout the pandemic, many of the skills they used to do this were not taught in arts curriculum. “In order to continue to enjoy the art, we must make sure we are properly training the artists,” said Lapin. “To teach these courses the same way they were always taught assumes that the available jobs after graduation are the same as they’ve always been.” Inside Higher Ed (International)

SAIT, RDC, Olds receive $2.1M to fund new research projects

SAIT Polytechnic, Red Deer College, and Olds College will receive almost $2.1M from the Government of Alberta to fund new research projects. These grants are a part of the Alberta Recovery Plan, and will support new projects in advanced manufacturing, alternative energy technologies, and smart agriculture. “Funding like this, to diversify research and introduce new technology applications not only advances innovation, it attracts investment and in turn rebuilds our economy, ensuring graduates from our institutions get jobs and have rewarding careers,” said SAIT President David Ross. SAIT | Olds (AB)

Seneca joins ARUCC to offer students digital credential wallets

Seneca College has joined the Association of Registrars of the Universities and Colleges of Canada’s (ARUCC) national network to offer digital credential wallets to students. Students can use this secure online platform to access and share their official transcripts, credentials, badges, and microcredentials. Seneca states that having access to a system like this helps students transition between postsecondary institutions and the workplace while reducing document fraud. “We are delighted to join the ARUCC National Network powered by Digitary as we embrace digital adoption and enhance our sustainability practices at Seneca,” said Seneca’s Registrar Sharon Kinasz. “Our enhancing supports for our students, graduates and alumni demonstrate Seneca’s dedication to supporting the learner’s experience through innovative digitization.” Seneca | ARUCC release (ON)

AU brings digital operations infrastructure into cloud computing environment

Athabasca University has put its digital operations infrastructure into a secure and flexible cloud computing environment that is powered by Amazon Web Services. AU states that it’s the first university to move operations into one secure cloud infrastructure, and that this infrastructure will allow AU to personalize education and to reimagine how it delivers education to students. “Bringing all our data together in our own cloud environment will make artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning at scale possible,” said Jennifer Schaeffer, VP Information Technology and CIO at AU. “It also makes IT systems’ downtime a thing of the past with disaster recovery in place that takes seconds, not hours. Learners around the globe rely on our accessible learning around the clock.” AU (AB)

VIU fundraising campaign exceeds goal

Vancouver Island University has raised $7.3M with its Imagine VIU campaign, exceeding the initial $5.5M goal of the campaign. The extra funds raised went to completing three new buildings on VIU’s Nanaimo campus, as well as acquiring new equipment, increasing research opportunities, and creating scholarships, awards, and bursaries. “Imagine VIU has enabled us to expand opportunities for students and faculty to realize their potential,” said VIU President Deb Saucier. “Exciting things are happening at VIU.” VIU (BC)

Conestoga partners with Y Schools to grant dual degrees

Conestoga College has partnered with Y Schools in France to grant students from their International Business Management program the opportunity to gain dual degrees. Five students from each institution will gain international living and studying experience while paying tuition to their home institution. On completion of their program, they will receive dual degrees from both Conestoga and Y Schools. “This is a tremendous opportunity for Conestoga students to learn more about international business and to experience French culture,” said Kenrick Jordan, professor of International Business Management at Conestoga. Conestoga (ON)

University funding should not be performance-based: Spooner

Marc Spooner, University of Regina faculty of education professor, says that university funding should not be performance-based. Changes in the labour market have caused Alberta and Ontario to pause performance-based funding, and Spooner says there is evidence that it should not be reinstated. The author says that performance-based funding rewards institutions that admit students with a high likelihood of employment in profitable jobs, in turn marginalizing racialized students who are hired less often. “Universities must continue to be envisioned as more than entrepreneurial training centres to be rewarded for performing short-sighted corporate-styled research and worker development if we are to thrive in a future fuelled by citizens not only capable of meeting today’s needs but also capable of imagining and implementing a better tomorrow,” said Spooner. Calgary Herald (AB)

HEC Montréal targeted by phishing campaign

HEC Montréal was recently targeted in a phishing campaign on Monday when students and staff received two spam emails. The emails appeared to come from director Federico Pasin and the institution’s security team. HEC states that its network was not damaged by the campaign and that it immediately informed the entire community of the measures to be taken. The institution is investigating to identify the source of the phishing campaign. Journal de Montréal (QC)