Université du Québec à Montréal recteur Stéphane Pallage is calling on the Government of Québec to make changes to its current university funding policy, reports Le Devoir. According to Pallage, the current funding model causes unhealthy competition between universities for applicants. UQÀM has reportedly submitted a brief to the Ministère de l’Enseignement supérieur as part of the province’s ongoing review of the current university funding policy. In the brief, UQÀM asks for fixed funding up to a minimum of 70% of the school’s funding needs, as opposed to funding based solely on enrolment. UQÀM has also requested a review of the parameters for increasing mandatory fees.
Hundreds of staff, faculty, and students from the University of Regina have signed a petition calling on the university to take urgent action to address its ongoing budget crisis. “We, as members of the University of Regina community, are concerned with the direction of our institution,” reads the petition. Among other requests, the petition calls upon URegina leadership to advocate for emergency government funding and develop a sustainable plan to lower tuition. URegina spokesperson Paul Dederick issued a statement in response to CTV News, communicating that the university is in “constant communication with the provincial government.” URegina leadership reportedly plans to meet with the organizers of the petition in due course.
As in Canada, artificial intelligence (AI) continues to be a notable topic of interest in the UK’s postsecondary education sector. The vice-chancellors of all 24 Russell Group universities have signed on to a set of five guiding principles on AI. The principles commit institutions to ensuring that students and staff are AI literate, staff are equipped to support students in understanding AI, teaching and assessment is adapted to incorporate the ethical use of generative AI, academic rigour and integrity are upheld, and institutions collaborate on best practices in the application of the technology. “It seems very likely every job and sector will be transformed by AI to some extent,” said Gavin McLachlan (University of Edinburgh).
Brock University has announced that its new Flexible Work Arrangement (FWA) Policy and Procedures are now in effect. In the policy, Brock notes its commitment to creating and maintaining FWAs, given their potential for generating higher job satisfaction, wellness, and work-life balance. The policy outlines four types of FWAs: Work From Home, Compressed Work Weeks, Adjusted Schedules, and Stacked Arrangements. Brock also offers several key considerations for those considering an FWA, such as how these arrangements interact with formal accommodations, collective agreement provisions, security and confidentiality protocols, and holiday weeks. The university previously implemented a work-from-home guideline on a trial basis in 2021; this new policy replaces these guidelines.
Students attending postsecondary education on Prince Edward Island are struggling to find accommodation for the Fall, reports CBC. The article states that the rental housing vacancy rate in the province is ultra-low, making it a serious challenge for students to find residence prior to starting their studies this September. The University of Prince Edward Island and Holland College are both reportedly making efforts to address the housing crisis. Holland VP of Corporate and Strategic Development Doug Currie says that the college is exploring opportunities to acquire more buildings or use local hotels. “If they can’t find a place to live, then that impacts our ability to hold that enrolment at its full capacity,” said Currie.
Aurora College has submitted plans to develop new courses that will address the Northwest Territories’ need for skilled workers with mine remediation and reclamation knowledge. In an email to Cabin Radio, Aurora VP of Education and Training Jeff O’Keefe said that the college has submitted a funding proposal to create two programs: a Northern Technician program, which will primarily provide professional development training to current technicians in or those wanting to switch to the remediation sector; and Northern Remediation Monitoring program, which will help learners develop their skills to become monitoring technicians. If the programs are approved, planning to develop the new programs’ curriculum, delivery models, and evaluation assessments is expected to begin this fall.
The Government of Manitoba is launching the Manitoba Careers for Internationally Educated Professionals Program to support foreign qualification recognition. Internationally educated professionals will receive up to $23K toward the training and assessment costs associated with registering in one of 28 self-regulated professions. MB is also providing over $1M from the Criminal Property Forfeiture Fund to the Winnipeg Police Service (WPS) for uses that include providing 200 members with trauma-informed training.
In an op-ed for Times Higher Ed, Matthew Flinders (University of Sheffield) argues that postsecondary environments should create spaces for failure to foster top research. Flinders contends that in the current “publish or perish” culture, academics are discouraged from taking bigger leaps in their research and instead opt to publish safe, conventional, and less controversial work: “The higher you pitch your intellectual ambitions, the higher your chance of falling on your face.” The author maintains that new structures are needed in the postsecondary system–and especially within the arts and humanities–that allow researchers to take “bigger leaps,” including by allowing them to fail.
Red River College Polytechnic received $500K from Canada Life to support the creation of an Indigenous-led student mentorship program. The program will be offered across all of the polytechnic’s campuses and academic programs, providing support and guidance to Indigenous learners as they navigate their education and early employment. “For aspiring Indigenous students, this program will help instill confidence, cultivate connections on campus, and foster a two-way, mutually beneficial learning experience between students and employers,” said RRC Polytech President Fred Meier.
NOSM University has developed a new specialized training module for professionals working in the primary-care sector in order to enhance their capacity to provide specialized services to Francophone patients in Northern Ontario. The complementary course was developed in collaboration with the Réseau du mieux-être francophone du Nord de l’Ontario and will be provided through the Active Offer Training website. “NOSM University is expanding its efforts to support Francophone medical students who will practice in French, as well as support Francophile and Anglophone medical students in recognizing and providing linguistic and culturally sensitive care,” said NOSM U President Dr. Sarita Verma.