Top Ten

January 19, 2021

QC provides $4M to support IT education, training

The Government of Quebec has announced $4M in funding to support those who are interested in pursuing an education in information technology. The funding is meant to address the need for skilled professionals to fill empty IT roles and is expected to give 500 people the chance to pursue short-term college or university IT programs. The program is geared toward those who have lost their jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic and need to expand their skills through further education. The funding comes as part of a broader $19M investment in training and recruiting IT staff. CBC (QC)

Allard loses supreme court battle to have name on UBC law school degrees

Donor Peter A Allard has lost a BC Supreme Court Battle to have his name printed on all University of British Columbia law degrees. CBC says that Allard, who donated $30M to UBC, had hoped that all degrees would have a “reasonable” reference to his name. In 2019, he attempted to “appeal the arbitration dismissal on the grounds that the arbitrator had erred in law and misinterpreted the agreement's meaning of ‘degree certificates.’” The appeal was dismissed on Friday. UBC lawyer Hubert Lai stated that UBC was “appreciative” of the dismissal and that the arbitrator's original decision “upheld UBC's long-time understanding” of the original agreement. CBC (BC)

Brock joins Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business

Brock University has joined the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business (CCAB) to support Indigenous businesses. As a member of CCAB, Brock will have access to over 1,000 Indigenous businesses, as well as access to diverse programming, tools, and training. “It’s such a great example of how we can operationalize what we mean by that pillar of fostering a culture of inclusivity, accessibility, reconciliation and decolonization and showing our support for Indigenous Peoples,” explained Robyn Bourgeois, Brock’s Acting Vice-Provost, Indigenous Engagement. Brock (ON)

AU PowerED, Justice Sector Constellation partner on online module

Athabasca University’s PowerED and the Justice Sector Constellation have partnered to develop an online module, Poverty and the Law: Expanding Perspectives, that introduces participants to the intersections between poverty and the legal system. The partnership saw material that was previously taught in person adapted to an online format. The module has been used by postsecondary departments and faculties, bar admission courses, and businesses looking for professional development. “Poverty is one of the main causes of this serious problem and the module […] demonstrates the connection between socio-economic and cultural factors and the failure of our legal system to address the needs of many in our society,” said Archie Zariski, Canadian Legal Systems Professor. AU (AB)

Mohawk’s Child and Youth Care Advanced Diploma accredited by CYCEAB

Mohawk College has announced that their Child and Youth Care Advanced Diploma has been accredited by the Child and Youth Care Educational Accreditation Board of Canada (CYCEAB). Students enrolled in the program participate in over 1,000 hours of practical experience and learn to facilitate change in the lives of children, youth, and families with challenges. “This designation demonstrates Mohawk’s commitment to the highest standard of training for our Child and Youth Care students, for their benefit and for the benefit of their future employers and the families they will be serving,” said Mohawk Community Studies Associate Dean Kim Ann Laush. Mohawk (ON)

Nursing programs address racism, prejudice: Editorial

A recent article by Laura Beaulne-Stuebing discusses the ways that nursing programs in Canada are dealing with racism. Beaulne-Stuebing identifies concerns about nursing curricula, such as the use of racial caricatures within case studies, and describes how educators and the Canadian Association of Schools and Nursing (CASN) are calling for change. As part of this effort, CASN recently developed a framework focused on the implementation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s calls to action. The framework includes initiatives such as increasing the number of Indigenous people working in health care and developing a required course focused on Indigenous health issues. “I’ve never seen [before now] this level of commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion issues,” said CASN President Cynthia Baker. “I don’t think it’s a flash-in-the-pan type of thing.” University Affairs (National)

YorkU launches virtual Indigenous Student Exchange Program

York University has launched a virtual pilot of their Indigenous Student Exchange Program. Through the program, ten students will participate in online workshops, which include topics such as food sovereignty, global Indigeneity, and knowledge keeping and sharing. Each student will be paired with another student from one of YorkU’s partner universities to complete a creative project. “In an unprecedented way at York, this program will create a knowledge exchange platform that allows each student to share their unique knowledge based on the Indigenous nation which they come from, while also drawing attention to the fact that there exists a multiplicity of Indigenous perspectives and experiences,” said Indigenous recruitment officer Breanna Barry. YorkU (ON)

NS, ON students test positive for COVID-19

Cape Breton University and Laurentian University are reporting cases of COVID-19. CBU has reported two asymptomatic cases, both of which were discovered through asymptomatic testing during the students’ isolation periods. The first student has isolated off-campus while the second has isolated on-campus. CBU reports that both students are following public health requirements and that contact tracing is being carried out by Public Health. Laurentian has reported that one individual living in residence has COVID-19. The student is in self-isolation and contact tracing has been carried out by public health officials. CBU (1) | CBU (2) | Laurentian (NS | ON)

International researchers develop unique strengths through their experiences: Opinion

International researchers develop distinct strengths that contribute to their professional success, write Sonali Majumdar and Jenny Schneider. The authors discuss how the distinct life experiences of international researchers often allow them to develop cultural intelligence, become comfortable in a variety of environments, and build relationships with people of different cultures. They also often develop communication skills such as multilingualism and non-verbal communication. “We urge academics to celebrate their international colleagues as holistic individuals and share their stories of courage, imagination and fresh perspectives,” write the authors, “in addition to their work ethics, research accomplishments and immigration challenges.” Inside Higher Ed (International)

PQ leader calls for plan for teaching quality, student mental health challenges

Parti Québécois has called on the Government of Quebec to develop a plan to guarantee teaching quality at postsecondary institutions and improve mental health assistance for students. Journal de Montréal reports that party leader Paul St-Pierre Plamondon has suggested that institutions offer hybrid classes and use COVID-19 rapid testing, he says which was originally proposed by provincial student associations. Plamondon also explains that the mental health of students is deteriorating and expresses disappointment that the government has not announced new funding for mental health assistance. Journal de Montréal (QC)