Top Ten

September 1, 2022

McGill celebrates sports science institute, AEOS research facility

McGill University recently celebrated two major infrastructure announcements: a significant gift that will be used to construct a new sports science institute, as well as the opening of a research facility focused on extreme weather. McGill will create the Sylvan Adams Sports Science Institute (SASSI) through a $29M gift from entrepreneur Sylvan Adams. SASSI will include testing labs, training suites, and more, and will focus on the study of elite athletes. Meanwhile, the university has also opened the Adaptable Earth Observation System (AEOS) research facility. Researchers will use AEOS to conduct research on extreme weather conditions and to perform advanced ecological research. Newswire (SASSI) | McGill (AEOS) | CBC (QC)

Queen’s opens new residence building

Queen’s University has formally opened its new five-storey residence. The building includes 334 fully-equipped rooms, as well as shared study rooms, laundry facilities, and kitchenettes. It is designed to be welcoming and inclusive, and features elements such as nap pods, a prayer space, indoor bike storage, a station for washing service animals, and an Indigenous gathering space. The building incorporates two of the building site’s original houses and has achieved Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification. “Our newest residence is a wonderful addition to campus, and we look forward to students having opportunities to enjoy its new spaces and amenities,” said Queen’s Deputy Provost and Dean of Student Affairs Ann Tierney. Queen’s (1) | Queen’s (2) (ON)

NWT releases draft PSE regulations

The Government of the Northwest Territories has released its draft postsecondary education regulations. The draft regulations propose four sets of regulations to support NWT’s PSE Act. These include: the Private Vocational Training Regulations, which will oversee certificate and diploma programs; the Colleges, Degree Granting and Universities Regulations, which will regulate institutions identified as colleges and universities, as well as degree programs; Private Training Institutions Regulations, which will oversee private institutions; and General Regulations, which will oversee other topics such as tuition, mandates, and reporting. NWT states that work is also underway on the Indigenous Institution Regulations, which will establish the process for recognition as an Indigenous Institution in the territory. NWT (NWT)

SFU unveils new Dining Commons

Simon Fraser University has unveiled its new Dining Commons on its Burnaby campus. The Dining Commons is open 24/7 and will provide students with a wide variety customizable dining options, including allergen-free, vegan, vegetarian, halal, and gluten free meal options. The space features locally made Canadian wood tables, a large outdoor patio and mezzanine, and electrical outlets and free Wi-Fi to support students who are studying or completing class work while eating. It is also designed to meet LEED Gold specifications and with sustainability in mind. Indo-Canadian Voice | Burnaby Beacon | Burnaby Now (BC)

HEC, CAIJ partner to make legal information more accessible

HEC Montréal has partnered with Centre d’accès à l’information juridique (CAIJ) to make legal information more accessible for the HEC community. Through the partnership, HEC community members can access the Centre’s research support services and legal resources. HEC will provide management expertise to CAIJ members through giving them access to academic publications and training. “With this access to the CAIJ’s platforms, young people will have everything at their disposal: jurisprudence, legislation and doctrine,” said HEC Lecturer Claude Ananou. “Our role as educators will then simply be to teach them how to find this information.” HEC (QC)

Community organizations, student unions help students find accommodations

Community associations and unions are taking steps to support students who are having difficulty finding houses. In Timmins, the Sikh Sangat of Timmins has opened up six temporary rooms to international students so they have a place to stay while searching for permanent accommodations. The temple is considering laying down mattresses at night in the main prayer room if additional students need a place to stay. The student unions at Conestoga College and the University of Calgary are also working to address student housing issues. Conestoga Students Inc is finalizing a report and recommendations based on focus groups it held during the 2020-21 academic year in order to highlight the challenges and potential solutions for students who are in need of housing. At UCalgary, student union president Nicole Schmidt states that the union appealed to Calgary City Council for support. SAIT offered UCalgary assistance with housing students until its residences filled up, and Mount Royal University has encouraged students in need of a spot to reach out to “discuss availability.” CBC (Timmins) | CBC (Conestoga) | CBC (UCalgary) | City News (National)

SIIT, FNCIAS partner to build Public Works Manager capacity in First Nations

The Saskatchewan Indian Institute of Technologies and First Nations Capital and Infrastructure Agency of Saskatchewan (FNCIAS) have announced a partnership that will build programming and training capacity in member First Nations. SIIT will design a new Public Works Manager curriculum and program that will focus on cultivating capacity in the sector. The program will aim to meet the training needs of Indigenous communities in SK. FNCIAS will provide funds to support SIIT’s development of the program. SIIT (PDF) | Nation Talk (SK)

Global higher education community must take steps to rebuild post-war societies: Opinion

Two recent opinion pieces discuss the moves that higher education must make to rebuild societies after war. Sameerah T Saeed and Patrick Blessinger write that the education system in countries experiencing conflict, such as Ukraine, has been severely damaged. The authors argue that educational institutions such as universities must prepare to adapt to their new realities, while global higher education must play a role in rebuilding post-war countries. A recent article published by Nature’s editorial team also calls for the global scientific community to remain united in its focus on supporting Ukraine. The authors emphasize that the international community will need to play a role in reconstructing and modernizing Ukraine’s research and educational infrastructure. University World News | Nature (Editorial)

AST, SMU partner on digital admissions, registration system for AST students

The Atlantic School of Theology and Saint Mary’s University have announced that they have partnered on a new digital admissions and registration system that will streamline the registration process for AST students. The two-year partnership will see the creation of a new online admission and registration portal at AST in its first year and an expansion of the portal in the second year to include easier access to financial services. “The project will benefit our students, faculty and administration by replacing the current outmoded information process with a system that is agile, digital and connected,” said Interim AST President Dr Tim O’Neill. NS (NS)

Cambrian, NSS Canada partner to create custom AR technology for mining

Cambrian College will be working with NSS Canada to create custom technology to support an augmented reality (AR) system that will make mining safer. The AR system allows miners to place explosives more quickly and from a safe distance, but NSS Canada did not have a system to attach it to a hardhat. Cambrian will be designing a custom bracket that meets the safety requirements with the help of students, which will allow students to gain real-world experience. “[I]f we’re able to allow our students to help them navigate that challenge, and eventually find a solution, that’s great for NSS because they get to meet their innovation goal,” said Cambrian Director of Applied Research and Innovation Mike Commito. “But the student also gets that experience as well.” CBC (ON)