The Canada Border Services Agency have reportedly arrested Brijesh Mishra, an Indian education agent who is reportedly connected to the recent international student admissions scandal. Five charges have been laid against Mishra under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, including charges related to offering immigration advice without a license and counselling a person to misrepresent or withhold information from authorities. Mishra was reportedly arrested while attempting to enter Canada. “Our officers worked diligently to investigate these offences and we will continue to do our best to ensure those who break our laws are held accountable,” stated Nina Patel, Regional Director General of the CBSA Pacific Region.
The University of Toronto Mississauga has received a $2.5M endowment from Gyan and Kanchan Jain and their family to establish a new chair in the study of Jainism. The university will match the endowment, bringing the total amount of funding for the new chair to $5M. This funding will support research on Jainism, community collaboration, and knowledge translation initiatives. “Jainism continues to have vital influence in South Asia and Canada and around the world,” said UTM VP and Principal Alexandra Gillespie. “We have a great opportunity to promote new research and teaching about this ancient belief system and to partner with Jain communities – locally and globally – to share this knowledge openly.”
Simon Fraser University has opened a Smart Manufacturing Hub in Surrey. The hub is equipped with an Industry 4.0 training system that includes artificial vision, collaborative robots, smart devices, and more. “Manufacturing is a fundamental human activity. We have been making products since the stone age,” explains SFU School of Mechatronics Systems Engineering Director John Shen. “Smart Manufacturing, or Industry 4.0, on the other hand, is a concept which only emerged about 10 years ago.” The hub will educate Industry 4.0 professionals and engage in collaborations with industry as it supports Canada’s transition to a new era of manufacturing.
In an article for The Globe and Mail, reporters Wendy Cox and Mark Iype discuss the challenging job market that international students face in Canada post-graduation. While many international students wanted to stay in Canada, Cox and Iype note Statistics Canada data that shows that only 30% of international students with bachelor’s degrees receive permanent residency within 10 years of obtaining their first study permit. While the number of international students coming to Canada has increased in recent years, this rate of stay has remained stagnant. To “do right” by these international students, Langara College faculty member Dr Jenny Francis argues that provinces should “better tailor labour market needs with programs of study” and that students should be given access to settlement services like language training.
The University of Regina and North West College have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to jointly deliver a Community-Based Bachelor of Social Work degree program. The agreement will improve access to social work education in northwest Saskatchewan. North West will offer the program at both of its campuses, beginning in the 2023-24 academic year. “This collaboration will not only expand opportunities for our students, but also address the pressing need for qualified social workers in our region,” said North West President Dr Eli Ahlquist.
When zoos and universities work together, they can increase their contribution to conservation science, write Albrecht Schulte-Hostedde (Laurentian University), David Lesbarrères (Laurentian), Gabriela Mastromonaco (University of Guelph), and Trevor Pitcher (University of Windsor) for The Conversation. The authors share the success of ReNewZoo, a collaborative training program that launched in 2016 and paired graduate students with zoos across Canada. Thanks to these partnerships, many student-research discoveries were integrated into conversation practices at the zoos. The writers outline a three-pronged approach to bringing together zoos and universities: A foundation of trust must be established, graduate students should be funded to work with zoos, and formal agreements should be created to promote the sustainability of these collaborations.
The University of British Columbia, the Musqueam Language and Culture Department, and the Syilx Okanagan Nation have collaboratively created a new font capable of typesetting Salish languages. The years-long project stemmed from UBC’s need to respectfully express hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓, the traditional language of the Musqueam peoples, in a written form in order to increase awareness of the land the institution is built on. First Nations Unicode can accurately represent words in hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓, but the font looks starkly different from Whitney, the university’s font. The final font, called Whitney Salishan, was developed through four years of extensive collaborative work and will be used on campus in language research and education, as well as by the Musqueam and Syilx peoples.
Polytechnique Montreal has launched a UNESCO chair in green and sustainable electronics. The Chaire UNESCO en électronique verte et soutenable (ÉleVéS) will be held by Clara Santato and will involve researchers from Africa, Europe, and the United States. Santato and her team will seek solutions to improve the lifecycle of electronic devices, reduce the impact of electronic waste, and study the design of electronic devices with a small environmental footprint that draw on waste from industries such as forestry and food.
Cambrian College and the Sudbury/Manitoulin branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA-S/M) have partnered to develop mental-health-related teaching materials for health sciences students. The two institutions worked in collaboration with people with lived experiences of mental health concerns to create an immersive, interactive, and free-to-use virtual simulation. The simulation will be made available to Cambrian health sciences students starting in the 2023-24 academic year. “What we discovered is there is a gap in knowledge and confidence among students working with clients living with a mental health condition,” said Cambrian faculty member Natalie Chevalier, who noted that CMHA-S/M’s knowledge and perspective was invaluable to developing the tool. Cambrian and CMHA-S/M have stated that they aim to refine the teaching tools in the future and share them with other institutions.
Using video-based reflection can help teacher candidates to be more equitable in the classroom, write Dr Bryan Carter (City University of Seattle) and Dr Adrian Cortes (CityU). To teach equity and cultural responsiveness, Carter and Cortes explain that CityU’s teacher certification program uses a video coaching platform to record teacher candidates’ interactions with students and review this footage. Teacher candidates then reflect on questions and consider how they can improve. “[B]eing a culturally responsive teacher takes work, and there’s always room for growth,” conclude the authors. “However, by engaging in reflective and collaborative practices, teachers and teacher candidates alike can improve their craft and create classrooms that support diversity, inclusion, and equity for all.”