Top Ten

February 24, 2022

MB announces increase supports, funding for those pursuing ECE training

As part of a larger announcement related to early childhood education (ECE) in the province, the Government of Canada and Government of Manitoba have announced increased supports for training in the field. As part of the funding announcement, MB will provide tuition reimbursements to ECEs who are enrolled in or recent graduates of related programs, offer direct funding for ECE training programs, and provide supports for child-care assistants who want to gain ECE certification. MB also plans to modernize the Early Learning and Child Care sector to better support career laddering, and will be providing increased funding for Francophone and Indigenous programming to support diversity and inclusion. CBC | Canada | MB (MB)

CBU, NSCC support Nova Scotia Power in reskilling, upskilling employees as coal phased out

Cape Breton University and Nova Scotia Community College will be supporting Nova Scotia Power as the organization helps employees to reskill and upskill. The company is moving to shut down its coal-fired electric plants and will be meeting with employees to get a sense of what their career aspirations are and if they are considering moving to another job or continuing with Nova Scotia Power. CBU, NSCC, and Nova Scotia’s Labour Department will work with the organization to ensure that there are training programs that can help current employees learn the necessary new skills for their future career, with a potential focus on renewable energy. CBC (NS)

Canada to provide almost $45M in CFI funding for 150 projects

The Government of Canada has announced almost $45M in Canada Foundation for Innovation funding for universities, colleges, cégeps and polytechnics. The funding will go toward 150 projects at 43 institutions across Canada: 136 research projects at 31 universities will receive over $30M through the John R Evans Leaders Fund, and 14 projects at 12 colleges, cégeps, and polytechnics will receive over $14M through the College-Industry Innovation Fund. The funding will help institutions acquire the labs and equipment they need for their work, attract and retain researchers, and support the discovery of innovative solutions to keep Canadian businesses competitive. CFI (National)

Queen’s launches Master of Digital Product Management program

Queen’s University’s Smith School of Business has launched a Master of Digital Product Management (MDPM) program. The graduate program will train managers to effectively lead digital product management and enable their organizations to fulfill their potential. The program combines a Knowledge Stream with an Application Stream to help MDPM students learn and practice digitalization initiatives management, as well as a practicum that will give them the opportunity to digitalize a real business process. The program takes 12 months to complete and will be delivered virtually with one residential session at Queen’s. “Many companies struggle with their digital transformation strategies and execution,” said MDPM program director Kathryn Brohman. “Effective digital product management is no longer an asset. It is a competitive imperative.” Queen’s (ON)

Develop a national blueprint to support the green-skills transformation: Opinion

Canada should create a blueprint to support a green-skills transformation, write RBC Senior Vice-President John Stackhouse and Future Skills Centre Executive Director Pedro Barata. Stackhouse and Barata argue that Canada will need to consider the roles of postsecondary education, reskilling, and immigration in its net-zero strategy, as approximately 15% of Canada’s labour force may be about to undergo a green-skills transformation. The authors say that workers will be expected to understand environmental issues so that they can balance their work with climate considerations. Retraining, lifelong learning, and the recognition of international credentials will also be important as Canada prepares for a green future. The authors encourage postsecondary institutions to “look beyond traditional disciplines” and to create new approaches to education to adapt to the needs of a net-zero future. The Globe and Mail (National)

U of T, UFV, UOttawa take steps to make campuses greener

The University of Toronto, the University of the Fraser Valley, and the University of Ottawa are taking steps to make their campuses greener. U of T has announced a new project to update the heating and cooling systems in several Victorian buildings at its St George campus using a geo-exchange system. The system is expected to reduce U of T’s greenhouse gas emissions by 15,000 tonnes a year. UFV has sustainably renovated its B-150 workplace. The space was redesigned with a focus on creating dynamic spaces with high-performing and environmentally friendly materials. UOttawa has announced plans to divest its direct equity fossil fuel holdings by 2023 and its indirect holdings by 2030. The Globe and Mail (U of T) | UOttawa | UFV (National)

Keyano reveals new jerseys featuring Indigenous artwork

Keyano College has revealed new jerseys for the Keyano Huskies, which were designed by Denésoliné artist Emma Voyageur who is from Athabasca First Nation. The artwork was created for the college’s basketball, soccer, and volleyball team jerseys. Voyageur designed a red jersey, a yellow jersey, and a blue jersey, using colours that are historically powerful in Indigenous culture. Each jersey features a landscape that shows appreciation for the land and symbolizes connection and empowerment. “They represent hard work, determination, pride, and of course honour,” said Voyageur. “A token of appreciation to our ancestors, those who have allowed us to be where we are today, and those we look up to.” Keyano (AB)

CNA, UQAR renew, reframe programs to meet evolving needs

The College of the North Atlantic and the Université du Québec à Rimouski have recently renamed and reframed some of their programs to better suit the evolving needs of industry. CNA has renamed its Industrial Engineering Technology program to “Management Systems Engineering Technology” to better reflect the program’s content and move away from the term “industrial.” “We believe the program name should be something that is a true reflection of the content of the program,” said Sonny Hegde, Dean of CNA’s School of Engineering Technology. “It’s a marriage between both the engineering and management principles.” UQAR has refreshed its baccalauréat en développement des sociétés et territoires by creating two profiles: one will focus on social research and applied critical analysis, while the other will focus on territorial and practical intervention. CNA | UQAR (NL | QC)

Institutions consider, adapt COVID-19 safety measures as provinces relax measures

Postsecondary institutions across Canada are considering their current COVID-19 safety measures and the changes and adaptations that might be made as provinces change their pandemic measures. The Government of Ontario has announced that it will end its vaccine certificate system in March, but some institutions will continue their vaccine policies. The 24 colleges represented by Colleges Ontario, as well as Western University, York University, the University of Guelph, and the University of Toronto will continue their vaccination policies for the remainder of the Winter semester. In Manitoba, the Brandon Sun states that Assiniboine Community College will be keeping its mask and vaccine mandates until May 2. The University of Alberta and the University of Calgary will suspend vaccination mandates when they resume in-person classes, but will keep masking requirements. Yukon University is delaying the implementation of its vaccine requirement until April 30. The Star | Colleges Ontario | Brandon Sun (ACC) | YukonU (National)

MRU faculty vote to ratify new collective agreement

Faculty at Mount Royal University have voted to ratify a new collective agreement after almost two years of contract negotiations. The agreement includes salary and benefits increases of 3.25%, which mitigates the impact of inflation and retroactively covers July 2020 to June 2024. “There was a sense of relief among many faculty, and certainly among students, that we had found a way to reach a new collective agreement with the university,” said Mount Royal Faculty Association president Lee Easton. “You can’t always get everything that you hoped for. But in this case, I think we saw an important move to address an important issue for contract faculty.” CBC (AB)