Top Ten

April 14, 2022

MB releases Budget 2022, invests $11M into increasing number of nursing students

Manitoba has released Budget 2022, which includes a $7.2B investment in strengthening the health-care system. Within the health care portfolio, MB announced that it would provide $11M for strategies to increase the number of nursing students in the province. Manitoba Nurses Unions head Darlene Jackson said that while it is positive that the government has made investments into nursing students, these students will not enter the labour force for years and so will not immediately help the demand for skilled nurses. Manitoba Association of Health Care Professionals President Bob Moroz added that a stronger commitment to training, recruitment, and retention would be helpful. “People are leaving professions earlier than they would have originally planned, and that’s causing even more of a crunch,” said Moroz. MB | CBC (MB)

CapilanoU announces plans for first on-campus housing facility

Capilano University has announced that it will be building its first on-campus housing facility. The student housing complex will have 362 beds and a 250 seat dining hall, and will be built on CapilanoU’s main campus. The six-storey facility will include student study areas, lounge space, and a First Nations-focused reflection and gathering space. The new housing facility will be designated for first- and second-year students, with a priority on Indigenous students, and will include 12 accessible units. It will be designed sustainably, built with mass timber and wood framing, and will be aligned with CleanBC priorities. It is funded by $41.5M from the Government of British Columbia and $16.7M from CapilanoU, and is anticipated to be completed in late 2024. CapilanoU | BC | Daily Hive | North Shore News (BC)

AU required to expand in-person operations in Athabasca, president defends virtual campus

Government of Alberta Advanced Education Minister Demetrios Nicolaides has recently announced that Athabasca University will be required to expand its in-person operations in Athabasca. AU has been transitioning to “near-virtual” operations since spring 2020, and AU President Peter Scott reportedly said in an email that the move to an “online virtual campus” with “a near-virtual workforce” would continue. CBC reports that a grassroots group had lobbied the government to keep the university operating in Athabasca as the loss of jobs would impact the town. CBC (AB)

MB postsecondary institutions close, alter operations due to major blizzard

Postsecondary institutions in Manitoba have closed and altered operations as a major blizzard rolls through the province. The University of Manitoba switched to remote learning for April 13th and 14th and asked staff and students to not come to campus. The University of Winnipeg and Brandon University closed their campuses and only offered essential services on campus. Red River College Polytech announced that it would be offering classes remotely and operating at “limited capacity,” with expectations of a return to normal on April 19th. CTV News (MB) | BrandonU (MB)

Canadian academics volunteer with SUCHO to help preserve Ukrainian digital history

Canadian academics have joined a global initiative to help preserve the digital history of Ukraine. Academics such as Dr Kimberley Martin (University of Guelph) and Peter Binkley (University of Alberta) are part of an international team of around 1,300 librarians and archivists who are working to archive Ukraine’s digitized cultural history through Saving Ukrainian Cultural Heritage Online (SUCHO). Volunteers spend time trawling websites that are hosted in Ukraine and use tools to archive information such as documents and images. Martin explained that if a location that houses a server is bombed, the information housed there will likely be lost unless it is archived offsite. Though the work being done is largely proactive at this time, 25 terabytes of data have already gone offline. The Globe and Mail | UoGuelph | CBC (National)

YorkU to receive $1.5M for Jean Augustine Chair in Education, Community and Diaspora

York University has announced that it will be receiving $1.5M to support the Jean Augustine Chair in Education, Community and Diaspora. The chair, which is held by YorkU Professor Carl E James, focuses on addressing inequities in Canada’s education system to improve outcomes for Black youth. It aims to support Black students by fostering an understanding of diverse student needs, facilitating leadership, strengthening partnerships and engagement, and building educational and social capacity. “This federal contribution will ensure the longevity of the Chair and hence the opportunities and pathways that are being created now through the research, educational and community activities for Black youth and future Black scholars,” said James. YorkU (ON)

MRU, OSCC create Indigenous Business and Economic Development Program

Mount Royal University and Old Sun Community College have announced a new Indigenous Business and Economic Development (IBED) concentration within MRU’s Bissett School of Business. The program will help to advance Indigenous business leaders and drive economic growth in Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities. “The IBED program is a shared educational space rooted in mutual understanding and allyship and reflects our Indigenous worldview and community-based economic and business acumen,” says Maria Big Snake, VP of Business Affairs and Government Relations at OSCC. “This program strengthens the knowledge base of our Indigenous leaders and business administrators and provides transformative business tools to carve the path forward to community economic prosperity.” MRU (AB)

Algonquin announces RHFAC certification for three buildings

Algonquin College has announced that three of its buildings have met milestones in accessibility and received a new certification. Algonquin’s Jack Doyle Athletics and Recreation Centre and Robert C Gillett Student Commons fully met the Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibility Certification™ (RHFAC) Gold Certification requirements with scores of 85%, while the Algonquin Centre for Construction Excellence received RHFAC certification with a score of 81%. Algonquin has planned upgrades to ensure it meets Gold Certification standards. “As we move forward constructing new buildings and retrofitting existing structures, we appreciate the expertise and support from the RHFAC program and aspire to have more of our buildings certified,” said Algonquin President Claude Brulé. Algonquin (ON)

NS appoints mediator to help resolve strike at USainte-Anne

The Government of Nova Scotia has appointed a mediator to help resolve the professor and librarian strike at Université Sainte-Anne. The mediator will be Michelle Flaherty, who specializes in labour, employment, and human rights matters and was formerly an associate professor of law at the University of Ottawa. Mediation will begin on Monday. “The strike has been going on for six weeks and I know it’s stressful for students, faculty and staff,” said NS Labour Minister Jill Balser. “I feel it’s time to appoint a mediator to help resolve the parties’ differences.” CBC | NS (NS)

Academics cut back on academic service to make time for daily writing: Opinion

Women academics need to avoid falling into “the service trap” to ensure they have sufficient time to develop a daily writing habit, writes Nadya Williams. Williams describes how developing a daily writing habit over the pandemic led to much greater productivity and publishing, and writes about how creating a rigid daily schedule with a strict one hour per day writing block led to “a glimpse of joy and sanity each day.” Williams says that women tend to fall into service roles that take time away from writing, and recommends that people in this position leave academic service if it is trapping them. The Chronicle of Higher Ed (Subscription) (Editorial)