Top Ten

June 21, 2022

TRU unveils New Gold Women in Trades and Technology Resource Centre

Thompson Rivers University has officially opened its New Gold Women in Trades and Technology Resource Centre. The centre, which is funded by New Gold Inc, will support women who are pursuing training in the trades. It will be a hub for students and staff to gather, and will include a variety of resources such as flexible teaching space, technology, a private meeting room, a functional classroom, and an office for the program coordinator. The centre will focus on supporting diversity in the skilled trades to meet British Columbia’s labour shortages. TRU (BC)

YorkU, Markham sign MOU focused on sustainability, research, learning, employment

York University and the City of Markham have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) that will see the two working together on sustainability initiatives, experiential learning, employment opportunities, research and innovation, and more. YorkU will also work with the city to support reconciliation through continuous learning and professional development opportunities. “This MOU formalizes our ongoing shared goals of training the next generation of world-class professionals and thought leaders, and fostering innovative community and research collaborations to drive positive change both at the local and global level,” said YorkU President Rhonda Lenton. YorkU | Markham (ON)

Why professors need to teach group-work skills: Editorial

Professors who use group projects to account for a substantial portion of students' grades need to teach students the necessary skills for group work, writes James M Lang. Lang states that students are often not taught how to work in group settings, despite these skills being important for working life. The author also writes that digital communication has changed how group work is coordinated and has reduced the amount of real time students have to work together in face-to-face situations. Lang points to resources such as the University of Minnesota's Centre for Education Innovation's "Faculty Guide to Team Projects," which can be used to ensure group projects are a successful learning activity. The Chronicle of Higher Education (Editorial)

StFX Alumni, Peacock family announce donations for Saputo Centre

St Francis Xavier University’s Amelia Saputo Centre for Healthy Living has received major donations from John and Adrienne Peacock and the university’s Alumni Association. StFX Chancellor John Peacock and Adrienne Peacock, who are alumni and long-time supporters of StFX, donated $5M on the condition that StFX find matching pledges from other donors, turning them into the most significant alumni donors in StFX history. Inspired by the Peacock family, the StFX Alumni Association donated $500K. The funding supports the Saputo Centre’s move to a larger, more inclusive space. “We could see this could make a difference,” said John Peacock. “A lot of people benefit, what better project to really support?” StFX | StFX (NS)

Indigenous opposition builds against QC Bill 96, community explores workaround

Opposition is continuing to build as Indigenous communities in Quebec respond to Bill 96 and the potential challenges that it poses for Indigenous students. Cree Nation Government officials argue that the bill ignores treaty rights and that Indigenous students will be forced to attend school in Ontario to bypass the language requirements. The Kahnawake Education Center in the Kanien'kehá:ka community has discovered a workaround for the Bill and has announced that it is exploring offering a Grade 12 program that will offer a recognized Ontario secondary school diploma. CBC reports that the spokesperson for the QC Education Minister indicated that the offer of grade 12 services, which could enable students to bypass the cégep system, is not authorized and that QC intends to close the loophole. “[This legislation] will not deter our goal to support our students on any life and career path they choose,” said Kahnawake Education Center Director of Education Robin Delaronde. CBC (1) | CBC (2) (QC)

Institutions must adapt to the changes brought by the pandemic to remain competitive: Opinion

Postsecondary institutions need to adapt to the changes created by the pandemic to continue to be competitive, write Gary Bolles and Alejandro Caballero. Bolles and Caballero write that the shifts created by the pandemic have forced institutions around the world to reassess their ability to meet student needs through their academic models and have forced university leaders to develop skillsets that allow them to thrive during change. These shifts also have made it necessary for institutions to adopt new technology that could enrich student experiences. The authors argue that universities that use old models will face challenges or become obsolete, while those that are innovating with hybrid models, bundling, or crowdsourcing platforms will threaten those that have not adapted. University World News (Editorial)

SFU renews partnership for visiting Indian scholars

Simon Fraser University, the Indian Council of Cultural Relations, and the Hari Madhu Varshney Visiting Scholars program in Indian Studies have renewed the ICCR Chair of Indian Studies Visiting Scholar program. The program, which has been in place since 2014, has brought four visiting scholars to SFU from India. The renewal encourages additional visiting scholars for the next five years, strengthening strategic institutional and industry partnerships with SFU in India. "We are grateful for the strong relationships we have developed in India and the support of the Consulate general to mobilize and deepen our engagement," said SFU President Joy Johnson. SFU | Voice Online (BC)

New guidance released for those working on studies related to humans: Editorial

In a new editorial, the Springer Nature editors discuss new guidance that focuses on studies related to humans. The editors say that though there are ethics frameworks that cover human participation in studies, these frameworks generally do not discuss the effects academic research could have on those who did not directly participate. The editors have provided guidance that essentially encourages the research community to consider how research applied to groups could be harmful, strive to minimize potential for misuse and risks of harm for groups, and ensure that respectful and non-stigmatizing language is used in manuscripts. “Editors, authors and reviewers should together consider and discuss benefits and harms that might emerge from manuscripts dealing with human population groups, and discuss when potential harms warrant revisions,” write the authors. Nature | Nature (Guidelines) (Editorial)

MtA plants disease resistant elms on campus

Mount Allison University has planted six American elms specially engineered to be resistant to Dutch elm disease. These new elm trees were made and "pre-grown" at Nova Scotia's Pleasant Valley Nurseries after elm trees across the Maritimes and on MtA campus were hit by Dutch elm disease. MtU has inoculated its three remaining mature elms against the disease. "At Mount Allison, we have a policy that for every tree we lose, we try to replace it with three, so that's been helping a little bit with all the ones that we had to cut down," said Erin Coombs, lead hand on the grounds crew. CBC News (NB)

Insignia receives funding to provide newcomers with veterinary assistant training

Insignia College will be receiving funding from the Government of British Columbia to provide 36 immigrants with veterinary assistant training. Insignia will offer the veterinary assistant training program to eligible newcomers over three intakes. In addition to skills training, those in the program will complete local work experience and receive job search support. “We are excited about this opportunity given to British Columbians to complete skills training and work experience with enhanced support,” said Insignia CEO Sahaj Sandhu. “This funding will not only support the workforce shortages in veterinary industry, but also prepare the candidates for in-demand and higher-paying jobs.” BC is providing almost $500K in funding to the initiative through the Community and Employer Partnerships project. BC (BC)