Top Ten News

Apr 01, 2024 • QC

In honour of April Fool’s Day, several institutions put out special news items.  Collège d’Alma’s communications team put out a special release with an artificial intelligence theme. In the release, d’Alma claimed that the cegep had become the first in Québec to offer courses that are entirely delivered by AI. Collège d’Alma clarified that while this was a prank, they are looking into the ethical considerations surrounding the use of AI in postsecondary education. The college warmly encouraged its community to share the “news” on Facebook and wished them happy fishing. Camosun College announced that Alaska, a Tabby Cat, would be working remotely as Camosun library’s “Online Leisure Expurrrt.” Alaska would help students looking to conduct a “litter-ature search” or wanting to hunt for articles about catnip. At Royal Roads, President Philip Steenkamp sat down to connect with the university’s “x-citing” new professor, Dr Deadpool.

Collège d’Alma, Camosun, Royal Roads
News

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Apr 01, 2024 • International

An article in Nature by Amanda Heidt highlights the value of an appropriately designed prank in the research lab, whether that be on April Fool’s Day or throughout the rest of the year. Speaking to academics across the sector, Heidt explains that while pulling off a prank can take time, it can also offset the intensity of scholarly activities, spark creativity in the minds of researchers, and strengthen social bonds within the lab. The author stipulates that there are rules to pulling off a good prank, such as never choosing a target that the prankster is in a position of power over and ensuring that the prank will not break any lab rules or bring harm to anyone. The pranks highlighted in the article include hiding toy spiders or horses around the lab, creating a fake letter from the Smithsonian expressing historic interest in old lab equipment, and throwing a birthday party for old lab stocks.

Nature

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Apr 01, 2024 • NS

The Government of Nova Scotia has announced how it will distribute its 12,900 international study permit applications. NS will distribute 11,565 study permit applications to the 10 public universities and Nova Scotia Community College, 710 to private career colleges, and 526 to language schools. 99 application spaces will be held back to allow for flexibility, so that NS can respond to unexpected circumstances or new programs. “We’ve taken a thoughtful approach to allocating the federal cap across the province, considering many factors like enrolment in our high-needs programs and managing growth in communities,” said NS Minister of Advanced Education Brian Wong. “That said, we will continue to advocate for a greater allocation from the federal government.” The Toronto Star reports that the 12,900 permits is a 35% decrease this year; Cape Breton University will see the biggest decline with 52%.

NS, CTV News, The Star

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Apr 01, 2024 • ON

A new report from the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO) explores the state of play for the province’s micro-credentials programming. Report authors Jackie Pichette and Rachel Courts found that micro-credentials are best employed to complement postsecondary credentials and meet upskilling needs. Conversely, the authors found that micro-credentials are less suited to meet comprehensive reskilling demands and may not be the best gateway into traditional postsecondary education. The authors provide recommendations to improve Ontario’s micro-credential strategy, suggesting that more data should be collected to ensure that micro-credential funding is optimized. They recommend that strategies around micro-credential programming should primarily focus on upskilling.

HEQCO

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Apr 01, 2024 • NB

Collège communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick’s plans for a student residence in Bathurst were recently turned down by the Bathurst council. The college planned to renovate a vacant building to create a student residence that would house 34 students, but CBC reports that the council voted against the project after hearing opposition from residents and noting that the development would have required re-zoning. CCNB President Pierre Zundel said that residents may have not understood the developer’s plans or “put unnecessary weight on scenarios that are not going to happen.” Zundel said that students are struggling to find places to live in the city and that the shortage in housing supply is making it increasingly difficult to attract students and keep them in the community after graduation.

CBC

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Apr 01, 2024 • ON

CBC reports that the Government of Ontario has allocated its international student permits for 2024, which has resulted in reduced permit numbers for Algoma University and 13 of the 24 public colleges. Colleges Ontario President Marketa Evans said that the loss of revenue from the drop will have a severe impact on the Fall term. “No organization can absorb such losses without significant cuts to operations,” said Evans. Conestoga College, which led Canada in the number of international student permits distributed in 2023, reportedly faces the greatest impact. The college states that its allocation is set at “less than 50% of our current international enrolment.”

CBC (ON), Conestoga, CBC (Conestoga), Waterloo Region Record (Conestoga)

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Apr 01, 2024 • NL

The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador has invested $634K into the Centre for Research and Innovation—a partnership between Memorial University, College of the North Atlantic, and Corner Brook Pulp and Paper—to support skills development in the technology sector over the next three years. The centre will use the funds to design and launch eight micro-credentials and four certificates that will address the province’s tech workforce shortages. The first year of funding will support program development, while the second and third years will support program implementation.

NL

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Apr 01, 2024 • ON

York University’s Schulich School of Business has announced the launch of a new Diploma in Global Metals and Minerals Management program. This program is designed for professionals interested in navigating the transition to a global low-carbon economy through responsible minerals development and use. Over the course of nine months, students will take part in online classes, two in-person residences at different centres around the world, and coaching. The program will launch in June.

YorkU

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Apr 01, 2024 • QC

La Fondation du Cégep de Drummondville has officially concluded its fundraising campaign , which raised $2.1M for Cégep de Drummondville. The campaign—which is the second major campaign ever held by the foundation—sought to raise $2M for the construction of a new learning pavilion and renovations to existing spaces at the cégep. Foundation president Joëlle Girouard expressed gratitude to those who contributed to the campaign and asserted that the achievement demonstrated the community’s confidence and unwavering support for the cégep.

Cégep de Drummondville, L’Express

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Apr 01, 2024 • AB

The University of Alberta’s Supporting Indigenous Language Revitalization (SILR) initiative has launched a new resource for Indigenous language revitalization. Towards Indigenous Language Revitalization: An Informative Resource highlights the significance of Indigenous language learning and includes key information such as dialects and language structures, oral traditions, and the importance of collective effort. The resource is designed for use in several different contexts: Educators, for example, are encouraged to use the resource when evaluating, creating, or improving educational programs;, while postsecondary analysts and policy developers can use the resource to identify practical approaches to support revitalization efforts.

UAlberta, UAlberta (PDF)