Canadian Education News

New Centre for Joining and Welding Opens at the U of A

According to The Gateway, in the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Alberta, there has been the creation of a new academic centre. It is called the Canadian Centre for Welding and Joining (CCWJ). The focus, as given by some of the title of the centre, will be materials engineering and welding.

On October 23, the Academic Planning committee considered and eventually passed the formal proposal stipulating the establishment of the centre. Welding is a complex and in-demand field involving “design and selection of alloys, machinery, and processes.” The CCWJ functions mostly from a $2.1-million-dollar-endowment.

As reported, “The CCWJ will equal or surpass existing facilities worldwide in terms of the scope of its interdisciplinary research, state-of-the-art infrastructure, collaboration with industry, and education and training of welding engineering and researchers.”

Cuts to Alberta’s Postsecondary Education Becomes Reality

Edmonton Journal described how the cuts to advanced education – often rumoured to be coming since the election of the UCP – became reality for the post-secondary institutions in Alberta with the reductions in provincial grants. Those cuts will be up to 7.9% for some institutions.

The tuition fee freeze will be cancelled in 2020-2021. Finance Minister Travis Toews stated, “Our goal over these next four years is to adjust the way we deliver education in the province to reduce the funding requirement of government and, again, to align our spending with that of our comparator provinces.”

Cuts include $225 million in tuition and education tax credits for the following three years. The Advanced Education budget dropped 5%, on a budget of $5.1 billion. Expected cuts will be 12.5% over the next four years. This means a budget drop from $5.1 billion to $4.8 billion.

There will also be an increase on the interest on student loans. The decisions were strongly informed by the MacKinnon panel report from September.

U of T Tops National Innovation Rankings

Reuters/University of Toronto stated that the University of Toronto is the most innovative university in the postsecondary institution national landscape. The University of Toronto is among the top 30 universities in the world.

In the World’s Most Innovative Universities 2019 ranking, the University of Toronto moved into 27th place, which is 8 spots up from 2018. It moved 19 places up in 2017. U of T continues on an upward innovation streak.

The President of the University of Toronto stated, “This ranking reflects the growing recognition of the University of Toronto as a major global hub of discovery and innovation across a wide range of fields… It is a tribute to the ingenuity of U of T researchers and their success in addressing pressing problems with practical solutions. The number one ranked university in the world is that of Stanford University.

University of Saskatchewan Most Active Lobbyist

IPolitics stated that the University of Saskatchewan and the “national advocacy body for universities were the most active organizations” for lobbying at the federal level based on figures from the Office of the Commissioner on Lobbying.

The University of Saskatchewan filed 19 communication reports for the office of the commissioner in September alone. Jennifer Thomas, spokesperson for the University of Saskatchewan, stated, the university is “working to more actively participate in the national conversation in areas of interest to the university including water, agriculture, Indigenous research and scholarship and Indigenizing the academy.”

Sara Daniels, the associate vice-president of government relations, has been working to build the relationships with the federal government for the university. Many recent meetings for Daniels, according iPolitics, have been focused on the work of “the school’s Canada 150 Research Chair in Hydrology and Remote Sensing, Dr. Jay Famiglietti.”