Conestoga College recently purchased a student residence formerly used by Wilfrid Laurier University and a 12-storey office building to use for student housing. The buildings will be renovated to meet student needs, with the former residence having some of its larger suites turned into smaller, more affordable suites and the vacant office building being converted into student residences, a lounge area, and a classroom space. Conestoga President John Tibbits told that these spaces will be cheaper to rent than current options at Conestoga. Tibbits also noted that one of the college’s goals is to provide students with affordable housing that is appealing to international students. Both buildings are anticipated to be ready for students in 2025.
NorQuest College has officially opened a new campus park called Miyonohk, which means “a good place” in Cree. NorQuest says that the park signals a step toward the college’s future vision of creating a space where all learners can flourish. The park’s name was gifted by Indigenous elders and knowledge keepers, and the park signals continued Indigenization efforts at NorQuest. “NorQuest’s new park brings life to our campus space in downtown Edmonton,” said NorQuest President Carolyn Campbell. “It is a space to gather, a door to our campus, and a symbol of how we will continue to positively impact our place and our community through present and future development in Edmonton’s downtown education district.”
Cape Breton University has announced plans to build a new, three-storey campus residence building. The building will have 12 apartment-style units, based on feedback from students who expressed interest in units that had kitchens so that they could cook for themselves. “[A]nytime we can add new housing stock to the community, we’re hoping that creates a domino effect, we will have more students coming on campus, which will open up other units downtown as well,” said CBU Director of Housing Doug Connors. The building will reportedly cost over $2.5M.
Universities and student newspapers have been hit hard by the Canadian news block on platforms such as Meta’s Facebook and Instagram, reports Diane Peters. Peters discusses how platforms such as Facebook, Google, Instagram, and X have responded to the federal Bill C-18 by blocking news sites or making it more difficult to find and share news. Student newspapers have been heavily affected by the loss of exposure and ad revenue, despite the fact that student newspapers with two or fewer journalists on staff are not covered by Bill C-18. Peters also references a recent statement from Canadian University Press and the National Campus and Community Radio Association, which urgently implores the federal government and Meta to rectify the situation.
Six Nations Polytechnic has officially joined the ORION network and Canada’s National Research and Education Network (NREN). By joining ORION and NREN, SNP will have access to ultra-high-speed bandwidth connections, new partnership and collaboration opportunities, and the opportunity to further advance Indigenous knowledge, education, and skills training. “We are excited to join the ORION network and the NREN as the first Indigenous owned and governed institution in Ontario,” said SNP President Rebecca Jamieson. “This is an opportunity to be part of a network that embraces diversity and fosters innovation that will provide unprecedented opportunities for connectivity and collaboration for SNP staff, faculty, and learners.”
Five research teams recently received funding to work with international partners on projects related to climate change and clean energy. The funding comes from the National Science Foundation Global Centres initiative, a collaboration between NSERC, SSHRC, the US National Science Foundation, Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, and UK Research and Innovation. Projects involving researchers from institutions such as McMaster University, McGill University, the University of Toronto, the University of Guelph, and the University of Calgary received funding of over $3M. The projects are focused on a variety of clean energy and climate topics, such as using AI to track Biodiversity Change and creating an International Research Center for Green Hydrogen Production Technologies.
Generative artificial intelligence (AI) applications–like ChatGPT–can support students’ career navigation processes, write Julia Lang (Tulane University) and Dustin Liu (Stanford University). While the authors admit that ChatGPT is not perfect, they argue that it can be used to create personalized career advice for students and support networking efforts, such as by drafting LinkedIn profiles or questions for informational interviews. Further, Lang and Liu state that verifying the accuracy of content produced by ChatGPT can be a useful critical thinking exercise for students. The authors encourage postsecondary educators to use generative AI as a tool to guide their students’ future career pathways.
The University of Toronto is expanding access to health care and training in two regions through partnerships with health care sites. The first of these partnerships is based in Timmins: The Timmins Press reports that U of T’s Kensington Eye Institute will provide the Timmins and District Hospital’s Ophthalmology Locum Clinic with a rotating roster of locums to serve at the clinic. The clinic currently only has one full-time ophthalmologist, so the partnership will increase access and reduce wait times for Timmins and area patients. Meanwhile, in northwest Toronto, the university and Humber River Health recently celebrated the opening of the Schulich Family Medicine Teaching Unit. The unit will serve as an official training site for U of T’s Family Medicine Residency Program.
Bow Valley College and the City of Calgary have renamed the CTrain station near the college City Hall/Bow Valley College Station. The change was made to recognize the city and college’s relationship and make the transit system more intuitive. It also follows the naming patterns of stations near institutions such as the University of Calgary and the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology. “We are honoured to be recognized in this manner,” said BVC President Dr Misheck Mwaba. “The renaming validates our role in the community and significantly enhances the college’s visibility, aiding our mission to open doors, remove barriers, and provide opportunities.”
The consciousness research community is reportedly in an “uproar” about a recent preprint published in PsyArXiv that calls integrated information theory (IIT), a popular consciousness theory, a pseudoscience. The preprint, signed by 124 scholars and available online through the preprint repository PsyArXiv, claims that IIT is not well supported by science. One of the signatories, Hakwan Lau (Riken Center for Brain Science), suggested that IIT may have become a leading theory because of the attention it has received from the media rather than academic acceptance. Lau hopes that the letter will reach young researchers, policy makers, and other stakeholders who may be easily swayed by the media narrative. Others shared with that they are concerned about the effect the letter will have on the field’s efforts to become established as a legitimate scientific field.