Top Ten

June 11, 2021

URegina establishes Gabriel Dumont Research Chair in Métis/Michif Education

The University of Regina has announced that it has established the Gabriel Dumont Research Chair in Métis/Michif Education, which Dr Melanie Brice will hold for a five-year term. The research chair will increase URegina’s Faculty of Education’s research and teaching capacity, and will enhance academic engagement with Gabriel Dumont Institute’s Saskatchewan Urban Native Teacher Education Program. Brice will research Métis and Michif education with a focus on “research, learning, knowledge-keeping, language and cultural revitalization, reconciliation, and inclusion with and by the Métis through formal education systems.” The new Chair is the first of its kind in a Canadian Faculty of Education. URegina (SK)

Rethinking college catalogues to meet student needs: Study

College catalogues need to be approached in a new way to help them achieve their purpose, write Terry U O’Banion and Cindy Miles for Inside Higher Ed. Reflecting on the findings of a study, the authors explain that college catalogues face a variety of issues, including excessive span and scope of information, confusing jargon, and an ambiguity of purpose. The article includes four recommendations to improve college catalogues: Revisiting the purpose of a catalogue, writing for the intended audience, breaking up the catalogue into targeted documents, and converting the catalogue into a web-only format. “[I]n the case of college catalogs, less is indeed more, and the clutter and unnecessary obstacles need be removed from the path of the student navigator,” write O’Banion and Miles. Inside Higher Ed (Editorial)

Documents suggest Mac Namara’s ousted from NSCAD after disagreement with Board: Globe

The Globe and Mail has obtained new documents and emails that provide insight into NSCAD’s controversial dismissal of former president Aoife Mac Namara last summer. The Globe reports that, prior to her dismissal, Mac Namara had resisted a plan from the NSCAD Board of Governors to sell heritage buildings, citing concerns about perceived or actual conflicts of interest and procurement rules. NSCAD has reportedly not yet shared key board reports, committee minutes, or other documents related to Mac Namara’s dismissal and intends to deliver some of these “in the coming weeks.” CAUT has called for NSCAD to immediately release all relevant documents related to the dismissal of Mac Namara and has announced its support of the Faculty Union’s call for a public inquiry into the Board’s handling of the situation. Globe and Mail | CAUT (NS)

UVic, UWindsor develop agreements with local cities, communities

The University of Victoria and University of Windsor have both recently announced memorandums of understanding with their local communities. UVic has announced that it will be developing MOUs with the City of Victoria and the districts of Oak Bay and Saanich. The MOUs will potentially include collaboration in areas such as truth, respect, and reconciliation; equity, diversity, and inclusion; tourism; technology; and infrastructure and economic inclusion. UWindsor has established an agreement with the City of Windsor that will provide city residents with access to the Lancer Centre. The city will be closing a community pool as part of a “reimagining” of a major recreation complex. The tentative deal that one city official lauded as “too good to be true" will provide residents with access to free parking, identical fees to memberships at other city pools, and all programming originally offered at the complex. UVic | Windsor Star (UWindsor) (BC | ON)

St Clair to build state-of-the-art esports facility for varsity program

St Clair College has announced that it will create a $23M state-of-the-art facility for its varsity esports program. The new esports facility will include 64 gaming PCs, training facilities for varsity teams, an esports classroom, VR spaces, and soundproof streaming rooms. St Clair says that this will be the largest publicly accessible facility of its kind in Canada, and anticipates that construction will be finished in January 2022. “This new esports facility really is the last piece of the puzzle for us. We have top-tier academic, varsity and club esports programs but now they will be able to intermingle under one roof allowing for an unparalleled degree of synergy,” said Esports Director Shaun Byrne. St Clair (ON)

UCalgary to establish Parker Psychedelic Research Chair

The University of Calgary has announced that it will be establishing the Parker Psychedelic Research Chair, thanks to a $3M commitment to the Mathison Centre for Mental Health Research & Education by alumnus Jim Parker. The chair will focus on researching the potential of using psychedelics to improve mental health. “The Hotchkiss Brain Institute takes pride in being trailblazers of new and impactful research in brain and mental health,” said HBI director Dr David Park, director. “Psychedelics research presents an exciting new frontier, and the implementation of the Parker Psychedelic Research Chair positions HBI and the University of Calgary as leaders in this growing field.” UCalgary is currently searching for candidates for the Chair. UCalgary (AB)

U of T to require students living in residence to receive COVID-19 vaccines

The University of Toronto will be requiring students who live in residence in the 2021-2022 academic year to be have received a vaccine against COVID-19. U of T has recommended that students get the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine before moving into residence, and indicated that those who have not received it by their move-in date will have two weeks to receive their first dose. “This requirement, which is endorsed by our local public health authorities, will enable us to give our students the residence experience that they expect – and that is so important to their growth and development – without compromising on their health and safety,” said Sandy Welsh, U of T’s vice-provost of students. U of T | CTV News (ON)

NB-IRDT releases reports on retention rates of NB graduates

The University of New Brunswick’s New Brunswick Institute for Research, Data and Training (NB-IRDT) has released two new reports on the retention rates of graduates in NB. The report showed that the majority of postsecondary graduates remain in the province, as 70% of university graduates and over 90% of community college graduates were still in NB a year after their graduation. The report also found that retention rates fluctuated by field of study, with nursing graduates being the most likely to stay in NB. “Graduates of our post-secondary institutions are among our province’s greatest assets,” said Trevor Holder, Minister of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour. “These reports provide valuable insights on the factors that contribute to graduate retention, and by extension the impact this will have on our economy.” UNB (NB)

The opportunity to provide anti-racist professional development to alumni: Opinion

Postsecondary institutions should consider hosting professional development opportunities for alumni that address systemic racism, writes Joe Walsh. Reflecting on the US context in particular, the author explains that many alumni may benefit from alumni offices reaching out to provide them with professional development. Walsh explains that programs could incentivize participation in anti-racism professional development through a variety of methods, including free program opportunities, highlighting the work of other alumni, and providing certificates and badges. The author also notes that these high-visibility programs may benefit the institution’s brand while also creating “better neighbors.” Inside Higher Ed (Editorial)

Lethbridge, Southland partner to provide training, development opportunities for trades students

Lethbridge College and Southland International Trucks have established a partnership that will support the training and career development of trades students. The five-year partnership will see Southland providing technology, equipment, resources, and training opportunities to students, as well as providing students and faculty with access to Navistar International Corporation and its International dealer network’s TECH EmPOWERment initiative. “This gift will allow Lethbridge College students to remain at the cutting edge of technology and innovation, and it will give them an advantage when they embark on their careers,” said Sheldon Anderson, Dean of Lethbridge’s Centre for Trades. Lethbridge (AB)