Top Ten

April 1, 2022

Task force releases report on improvement of postsecondary opportunities for Northerners

A new report by the federal Task Force on Northern Post-Secondary Education has listed 37 calls to action in order to improve postsecondary opportunities for Northerners. The report draws on information from engagement sessions and surveys with over 800 Northerners. The task force found that many are wary of the education system due to colonial legacies, and recommended that leadership of education be returned to Northerners. “For generations, students in the North have often had to leave home to access post-secondary education, creating major personal, cultural, and financial barriers and challenges,” said task force member Ashlee Cunsolo. “Local access to post-secondary education, whether in person, on the land, or online, has transformative potentials to support people in achieving their educational goals, at home.” News Wire (National)

QC politicians criticize Laval for job posting that excludes white men

Several ministers in the Québec government leveled criticism at the Université Laval for a job posting that reportedly excluded white men. Former Parti Québécois leadership candidate Guy Nantel brought attention on social media to a call for applications for a Canada Research Chair (CRC) position at Université Laval that stated that only women, Indigenous people, people with disabilities, or visible minorities would be considered. When questioned, Journal de Montréal reports that the university replied it was seeking to meet the requirements set by the CRC program in 2017. The Journal reports that other institutions in QC, such as the Université du Québec à Montréal and the Université de Sherbrooke have posted calls for applications with similar requirements. CTV News | Montréal Gazette | Journal de Montréal (1) | Journal de Montréal (2) (QC)

UWindsor names recreation complex the Toldo Lancer Centre

The University of Windsor has announced that it has named its new recreation complex the Toldo Lancer Centre in honour of the legacy of the late Anthony P Toldo, who was an entrepreneur and philanthropist who supported health services. The Toldo Lancer centre is set to open this Fall and includes a triple gymnasium, an eight-lane pool, a walking and running track, and a fitness centre. The centre will be open to the community. “Designed to enhance the student experience, promote campus spirit and community pride, the Lancer Centre will be a hub for connection and health,” said UWindsor President Robert Gordon. “The Toldo family has been a true leader in these areas for generations.” UWindsor | CBC | CTV News (ON)

Why postsecondary institutions struggle to increase faculty diversity: Study

Though postsecondary institutions have tried to increase the diversity of their faculty for decades, they have had limited success, writes Abbi Ross. Ross references a recent study completed at one US university that showed that efforts to increase diversity can be quietly thwarted by human biases and institutional barriers. The study noted that individuals often showed a disconnect between their understanding of diversity and the perception of diversity as an institutional value. The study found that search committee chairs discussed diversity and equity differently depending on factors like tenure status, and that junior faculty members leading searches were more likely to defer to the committee’s senior faculty members. The study’s author recommends that institutions create a clear, unified message about commitment to diversity and that faculty hold each other accountable. The Chronicle of Higher Ed (Subscription) (Editorial)

Providence to host ACC’s rural rotating Practical Nursing program, other sites announced in Morden, Prairie Mountain region

Providence University College has announced that it will be one of the hosts for Assiniboine Community College’s rural rotating Practical Nursing program. The program will use Providence’s facilities in Otterburne this Fall and will host up to 25 students from the Southern Health-Santé Sud Region. “[T]he need for practical nurses is significant and we are pleased to be sharing in this initiative alongside Assiniboine and Southern Health Santé Sud, said Providence President Kenton Anderson. “Together we can accomplish more.” The Brandon Sun reports that ACC will also be offering a rural rotating site in Morden at a currently vacant facility as well as a site in Arborg that was announced earlier this year. ACC President Mark Frison also reportedly made reference to a fourth site in the Prairie Mountain Health Region. CHVN Radio | Brandon Sun (MB)

Institutions announce new bursaries and funding for students affected by invasion of Ukraine

Postsecondary institutions across Canada have announced supports for students affected by the invasion of Ukraine and other challenges. The University of Manitoba has pledged up to $1M through an emergency bursary fund, which will help students who are in financial distress pay for their tuition and living expenses. Western University has invested $600K in direct financial assistance for students and scholars who are facing disruption and displacement as a result of conflicts in their home countries, and is also creating new research opportunities for students and scholars who have been displaced by global crises. The Ontario colleges have also made a joint donation to UNICEF’s Ukraine emergency fund, and will be offering impacted students support in the form of international tuition relief bursaries, accommodations, and emergency funds. CBC (UManitoba) | Western | Durham (National)

NL launches graduate recruitment program

The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador has launched a new graduate recruitment program. The program aims to attract recent graduates of postsecondary institutions to work in the province’s public service. Anyone who is eligible to work in Canada and has graduated from a minimum three-year postsecondary diploma or bachelor level program is eligible for the program. Graduates will work in NL’s public service for two years and will benefit from mentorship opportunities, a competitive salary, and the opportunity to develop a diverse skillset. NL | VOCM (NL)

Canada’s PGWP system may harm international students: Editorial

In a recent article for New Canadian Media, Minu Mathew discusses how Canada’s Post Graduation Work Permit (PWGP) system harms international students. Mathew says that the one-time PWGP can push students to become undocumented, work in exploitative jobs that do not meet work experience requirements, or force them to apply for another student visa after their PWGP expires just to stay in Canada. Those who apply for PR through other streams often experience barriers and rejection, and the PWGP does not always last long enough for students to complete one year of work experience. Savitri Sinanan, an international student at George Brown College, says that international students face anxiety and stress throughout these processes and that they should not be viewed as a burden on the system as they contribute through their tuition. The Star (NCM) (National)

Trent partners with Karbon Brewing Co on green brewing technologies, launches co-op streams for humanities and social sciences

Trent University has announced that it is partnering with Karbon Brewing Co to develop green brewing technologies. Karbon Brewing Co will be working with Trent researchers in fields such as regenerative agriculture, biology, water quality, chemistry, and biomaterials. The partnership will include experiential learning opportunities for students, and the two parties will explore the potential development of new courses and certificate programs. Trent also recently announced the launch of19 competitive co-op streams for students in humanities and social sciences. The co-ops will give students the opportunity to gain 12 months of paid work experience to support them in their future careers. Trent (1) | Trent (2) (ON)

CNA, Habitat partner on affordable housing project in NL

The College of the North Atlantic has partnered with Habitat for Humanity Newfoundland and Labrador on an affordable housing project. Under a three-year MOU, CNA will support the expansion of the company’s construction projects and services to help people gain access to safe and affordable housing. “We are also confident this collaboration will provide opportunities for students and alumni to participate in work-integrated learning placements, skills enhancement, development and delivery of unique education and training, and summer employment,” said CNA President Liz Kidd. “It is also heart-warming to know that we will be helping families achieve their dreams of owning a home.” CNA (NL)