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Ten with Ken (Video)

Ken Steele is Canada's most trusted higher ed monitor and futurist, and in this webcast he rounds up emerging trends, research data, best practices and innovative new ideas for higher education. (For HD version see YouTube, DailyMotion, Vimeo or Facebook. Audio only podcast version available separately.)
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Now displaying: 2016

For more information about Ken Steele's speaking and facilitation services, an archive of articles and white papers, and a database of bright ideas, please visit www.eduvation.ca

This podcast is also available on iTunes or on YouTube. For exclusive early access to future episodes, please subscribe to our free email newsletter, the Eduvation Loop

Dec 10, 2016

This year, we distill the best moments from 76 holiday greeting videos that were published by colleges and universities across Canada in December 2015, and select a few as “Best in Class” for their categories. Please “take twenty” with us, and enjoy!

If you’re creating your own holiday greeting video, be sure to animate your logo with snowflakes and sleighbells. Your task is to convey best wishes on behalf of the campus community, most often featuring the president as spokesperson.

A snowy Canadian winter is a natural, non-denominational symbol of winter break, and so many holiday greeting videos feature footage of campus wrapped in a blanket of snow. Perhaps last year was particularly green, since quite a few videos faked the snow – from Royal Roads to Western (which got Best in Class for this category.)

The simplest way to incorporate the many voices on campus is to feature a collage of photographs, either taken throughout the year, or staged using holiday props. More popular is the “Holiday Shout-Out”, a compilation of many staff and students sharing their holiday wishes, often in a range of languages and reflecting a variety of traditions. (Humber College gets Best in Class for this category, although there are plenty of other great examples. VIU deserves honorable mention for involving their “Extreme Science” team. uWindsor produced a very slick multilingual video, but Queen’s ultimately got Best in Class for the sheer range of voices and their enthusiasm.)

A variation on the “shout-out” is the “on-the-street Q&A”, and again there are plenty of great examples. Many ask students and staff what the holidays mean to them, or what they are looking forward to about the holidays. (SFU gets Best in Class for this category, for a polished and energetic video asking staff and students about their gift to the world.)

Many institutions showcase the skills and talents of their students and alumni in their holiday greetings. Sheridan has a tradition of animated videos, and Mohawk of very polished musical greetings. Last year we saw alumni talents featured by NSCC, ECUAD, Ryerson, and Georgian as well. (We awarded Mohawk Best in Class for their musical videos, and even behind-the-scenes video.) Special mention goes to MSVU's recruiters, who clowned around while demonstrating their gift-wrapping skills.

We saw tree-trimming parties at King’s and CBU, among others, but uVic took it to a new level with their best-in-class approach to symbolic ornaments and student sound bytes. A close runner-up was George Brown, which created a strong example as well. Santa Claus made an appearance at Douglas, posing for photos with all the good little girls and boys. At Niagara, gifts were delivered by Basil, the greenhouse cat.

Brock staged a "parking miracle". A staffer named Lori played Secret Santa at Durham, while Lassonde tackled intergenerational peace and understanding with a defense of Millennials. UNB created an emotional thank-you from scholarship recipients to donors. But our favourite in this category was a wordless music video from uLeth, featuring gorgeous cinematography and Tyrone Wells’ song “Christmas at Home.” (Unfortunately UofL has just recently deleted their upload.)

Some institutions promote professional, accomplished singers of Christmas Carols, while many publish videos of enthusiastic amateurs. Some try to stay in key, while others focus on having fun. NSCC shared a sign language caroling performance. Waterloo's Faculty of Environment rewrote “Winter Wonderland” with a “green” focus.

Algoma staff participated in a collective reading of “The Grinch”. Bow Valley “put a bow on it.” Fleming produced their own version of Jimmy Fallon’s “Thank You Notes.” RDC parodied “The Night Before Christmas.” Definitely Best in Class for the parody category, however, was a version of the “12 Days of Christmas” by the Film & Video students at CNA. (Of course I can’t resist including uMich Engineering's Star Wars parody, “The Holiday Jedi Rap.”)

You can watch the original, unedited versions of these holiday videos in our 2015 Holiday Videos playlist - https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLodJ8ParJmYULq5f-_JsusgbW1V8BNfSd

On behalf of everyone here at Eduvation, and from my family to yours, I want to wish you a truly peaceful holiday season, and a happy and prosperous 2017!

We’re already assembling a YouTube playlist of 2016 holiday videos, so please add yours here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLodJ8ParJmYW50HvU2lrHm_DURpmz8jqk&jct=HCQjNaZ4OsE7aqyhuMM-_4ox4oMGcg

(We’ll summarize them for next year’s holiday special.)

Nov 27, 2016

In this week's Ten with Ken, we sum up some recent higher ed social media trends and memes, from the #MannequinChallenge to MUN's reality TV webcast, "The New Class," and much more!

#MannequinChallenge:

After the Pokémon Go craze of July and August, the next viral sensation to hit the inter webs was the #MannequinChallenge. It was apparently started by high school students in Jacksonville FLA in early October. Within a month it was being replicated by college football teams, NFL teams, leading political candidates, pop music stars and the US First Lady. The first Canadian PSE campus to upload a #MannequinChallenge video to their official YouTube channel appears to be La Cité Collègiale. Their culinary students were featured in a video on Nov 9. MSVU students jumped on the bandwagon a day later. A Collège Boréal student association video followed a week later. But by far the biggest, most ambitious #MannequinChallenge we've seen involved 750 staff and students at Brock University.

The #Mannequin videos we featured in this episode are collected in this playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLodJ8ParJmYVSWaOnbWUbXGGD62QwQMp_
Let us know if there was another we should have seen, by commenting below!


#TBT:

St Lawrence College released a series of short alumni profiles in early November, explicitly leveraging the "Throwback Thursday" meme. We've made a playlist here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLodJ8ParJmYVWsDOh51Y0uMEYa4Rl2DSo

Global Oil Thigh:

Queen's University Advancement collected clips of alumni worldwide participating in a rendition of the school's gaelic fight song, the "Oil Thigh." Although low-res and uneven in quality, it does convey the school spirit of alumni, as a small celebration of Queen's 175th anniversary. https://youtu.be/DorpBgaxujU

MUN's "The New Class":

Memorial University of Newfoundland launched a really interesting experiment in student blogging: a weekly web series produced by and starring students. "The New Class" follows the experiences of 10 new students at MUN, from mental health challenges to exhilaration about the weather, outsized characters to more mundane accounts of school strengths. Check out the episodes here: https://youtu.be/vkDLQ-UFvEY?list=PLzixCJnFSSVgTTSLou7kxKLvC4HJoOICj

Cute Kids:

As part of their 50th anniversary communications program, Ontario's Colleges released a video this month featuring adorable kids talking about the future, their career plans, and their (limited) understandings of what college offers. https://youtu.be/Ja967dYPVvg

Women are Powerful:

Mount St Vincent University released a 2-min video this month to thank Hillary Clinton for her efforts on the campaign trail and in particular her concession speech empowering young women. It connected to MSVU's history as a women's college (from 1873-1967) and the honorary degree it awarded to a much younger Hillary Clinton in 1995. https://youtu.be/7VTKWBGKDyA

So in addition to our April Fool's special https://youtu.be/v-dSiWr3KHM and our Back to School episode https://youtu.be/Ci3YPzohbLM , this rounds out our coverage of social media this year.

Aside, of course, from our upcoming annual Holiday Special! Be sure to subscribe so you don't miss it, on YouTube, iTunes, or by email (for exclusive early access) at http://eduvation.ca/subscribe/

Nov 21, 2016

This week, Ken talks to leaders from 14 Ontario universities about the latest new construction and renovations on campus, and extrapolates some major trends in campus construction, which reflect institutional priorities and new trends in student services.

Major Facelifts:
Laurentian University has just completed a $34 M campus renewal program, renovating 9 buildings and virtually every classroom. The University of Windsor has closed campus roads to traffic, and replaced parking lots and dilapidated buildings with green space, pedestrian pathways and outdoor furniture. OCAD University is undertaking the renewal and expansion of 150,000 sq ft at its downtown “Creative City Campus”.

Downtown Satellites:
The University of Windsor has renovated the Windsor Armouries to house its School of Creative Arts and Music faculties, the former Greyhound Bus Depot to hold its Film program, and the former Windsor Star building to house the Centre for Professional and Executive Education and the Social Work program. OCAD will be opening an extension campus in the Waterfront “City of the Arts”, and will be opening the Mirvish-Gehry Centre for Visual Art & Art History.

Extroverted Social Space:
Western University has added significant capacity for student social and study space, in residences, academic and administrative buildings. Ryerson University has opened its new remarkable new Student Learning Centre, “the library of the future,” with distinct layouts and environments on each floor. Lakehead and Trent are breaking ground on new Student Centres. Queen’s has added two new residences, Brant House and Smith House. Lakehead has opened a new residence and cafeteria building in Orillia. Laurentian has a new Great Hall.

Student Services:
Lakehead and Laurentian are building new one-stop centres. Queen’s is integrating all of its student wellness services in one location, in the former Phys Ed building. OCAD is building a new Indigenous Cultural Centre. Laurentian is just finishing a new Indigenous Sharing and Learning Centre. Lakehead has created a new international Students Centre.

Libraries:
Algoma University has just completed renovations to its library. OCAD is expanding its library three-fold, to create a new “Library of the Future” with collaborative space. Trent is hoping to do a major retrofit of the Bata Library, an iconic but 50-year-old building.

Flexible Classrooms:
Algoma is planning to renovate its main building to create a more student-centred campus. Laurentian has retrofitted virtually all of its Sudbury classrooms with half a dozen LCD displays, flexible seating and tables. Western is renovating its oldest building, University College, to make it more modern, and experimental new active learning spaces have proven very popular with faculty and students.

Entrepreneurial Spaces:
Many campuses are building space on campus for incubators, accelerators, makerspaces and research parks. Western has its Propel accelerator. Queen’s is building a new Innovation incubator for the faculty of Engineering. Ryerson has the Launch Zone in its new SLC. UOIT is constructing a new $100 M Centre for Advanced Research, Innovation & Entrepreneurship. Trent is developing a new 100-acre Research & Innovation Park to focus on Clean Tech. Brock University has just received federal funding to create a new innovation centre.

STEM Space:
Brock opened its Cairns Building two years ago, with 271 state-of-the-art labs. uWindsor has a new Engineering building. Carleton is building a new Health Sciences building. Laurentian has its new $20 M Vale Living with Lakes Centre. UOIT has broken ground on a new Infomatics Research building, to open Fall 2017. uOttawa has built the Advanced Research Complex, including the largest Photonics centre in Ontario and Canada’s only accelerated mass spectrometer, and is about to start building a new STEM centre. Western is building a new 100,000 sq ft Engineering building.

Professional Faculties:
Lakehead has just completed renovating the former Port Arthur Collegiate for its new Faculty of Law. Brock is building a $22 M addition to its Goodman School of Business. Laurentian has completed its new $45 M MacEwan School of Architecture.

Overall, these campus construction trends reflect some long-term program trends, and new emphasis on student services.

Ryerson Student Learning Centre - https://youtu.be/5PfR-IEM96M
uWindsor Engineering Building - https://youtu.be/Dr2ec7dNd7I
uWindsor Downtown Campuses - https://youtu.be/KrF7F7NWaB4
uWindsor Campus Time Lapse - https://youtu.be/dsFYTabpOwI

Nov 13, 2016

This week, Ken Steele speaks with 10 university presidents and 2 senior administrators about the ways in which universities are evolving to meet the needs of 21st Century Learners.

While it's certainly fair to argue that the core principles of a university education are timeless, in general university programs, services and campuses are evolving in a time of labour market uncertainty, interdisciplinarity, active learning classrooms, experiential and work-integrated learning, and new technology. Institutions are trying to be responsive to student expectations, employer demands, and government requirements. Preparing today's students for careers can also involve entrepreneurial training, since 40% of jobs are projected to be freelance by 2020.

Interviewed for this episode:

Algoma U:
Craig Chamberlin, President & Vice-Chancellor

Brock U:
Brian Hutchings, Acting President

Carleton U:
Suzanne Blanchard, Vice-President, Students & Enrolment

Lakehead U:
Brian Stevenson, President & Vice-Chancellor

Laurentian U:
Dominic Giroux, President & Vice-Chancellor

Nipissing U:
Mike DeGagné, President & Vice-Chancellor

OCADU:
Sara Diamond, President & Vice-Chancellor

UOIT:
Tim McTiernan, President & Vice-Chancellor

uOttawa:
Steve Perry, Dean of Science

Queen’s U:
Stuart Pinchin, Executive Director, Undergraduate Admissions & Recruitment

Ryerson U:
Mohamed Lachemi, President & Vice-Chancellor

Trent U:
Leo Groarke, President & Vice-Chancellor

Western U:
Amit Chakma, President & Vice-Chancellor

uWindsor:
Alan Wildeman, President & Vice-Chancellor

Thank you to all who agreed to be interviewed! And our apologies to those we missed because of time constraints. (We had just 1.5 days onsite this year.)

Recent episodes have examined the top reasons why people love attending the OUF, and new booths and recruitment marketing tactics, and Advice on Choosing a Program. Next week: Trends in campus construction projects.

For exclusive early access, subscribe to our free email newsletter at www.eduvation.ca/subscribe

Nov 7, 2016

Ken Steele sums up recent trends in new university programs, from interdisciplinary degrees to college-university collaborations, based on Ontario-wide data and on interviews with university presidents and recruiters at the 2016 Ontario Universities' Fair.

North American youth are increasingly focusing on STEM subjects and the traditionally high-paying professions, from accounting and law to medicine and engineering. Many universities are launching new programs at the undergraduate and graduate level to appeal to these students, and even partnering with international law schools when they don't have one of their own.

Increasingly research is being directed towards interdisciplinary subject areas, and interdisciplinary programs are on the rise, from broad-spectrum human, animal, plant and planet health, to programs combining business and the humanities, or entrepreneurship and biomedical engineering.

Many universities also report that programs related to sports and kinesiology, social work or child and youth studies are popular.

Particularly intriguing is the number of new college-university collaborative programs launched in the past three years. Ken sums up some examples from Brock, York, Laurier, McMaster, Carleton and Queen's to illustrate the pattern: typically, students can earn a university bachelors degree plus a college diploma or advanced diploma, and usually save a year or two in the process.

Colleges Ontario "Kindergarten" commercial:
https://youtu.be/Bq1erNvHQ0k

Interviewed for this episode:

Brock U:
Brian Hutchings, Acting President
James Mandigo, Vice-Provost, Enrolment Management & International
Carol Merriam, Interim Dean, Faculty of Humanities (2015)

Carleton U:
Suzanne Blanchard, Vice-President, Students & Enrolment

Lakehead U:
Brian Stevenson, President & Vice-Chancellor

Laurentian U:
Dominic Giroux, President & Vice-Chancellor

Nipissing U:
Mike DeGagné, President & Vice-Chancellor

OCADU:
Sara Diamond, President & Vice-Chancellor

UOIT:
Tim McTiernan, President & Vice-Chancellor

Queen’s U:
Stuart Pinchin, Executive Director, Undergraduate Admissions & Recruitment

Ryerson U:
Mohamed Lachemi, President & Vice-Chancellor

Trent U:
Leo Groarke, President & Vice-Chancellor

Western U:
Lori Gribbon, Associate Registrar, Admissions & Recruitment

Wilfrid Laurier U:
Craig Chipps, Manager of Recruitment & Admissions (2015)

uWindsor:
Alan Wildeman, President & Vice-Chancellor

Thank you to all who agreed to be interviewed! And our apologies to those we missed because of time constraints. (We had just 1.5 days onsite this year.)

Recent episodes have examined the top reasons why people love attending the OUF, and new booths and recruitment marketing tactics. Next week: How universities are evolving to serve the needs of the 21st century learner.

For exclusive early access, subscribe to our free email newsletter at www.eduvation.ca/subscribe

Oct 31, 2016

Ken Steele went to the Ontario Universities' Fair, in September 2016, and asked 45 experts for their best advice for young people trying to choose between universities. And these are people who ought to know: 11 university presidents, 9 recruiters and admissions professionals, and 25 current undergraduate students. (For 1080p version see https://youtu.be/ksAk8ppph4s )

In the end, there was consensus on 8 key pieces of advice you should keep in mind:

1) Take Your TIme
2) Do Your Homework
3) Ask Questions
4) Visit Campuses
5) Look Further Afield
6) Find a Comfortable Fit
7) There are No Bad Choices
8) Ultimately, It's Up to You

Interviewed for this episode:

Algoma U:
Craig Chamberlin, President & Vice-Chancellor
Brad Lloyd, Admissions Advisor
Anna Stilin, Student Ambassador

Brock U:
Brian Hutchings, Acting President
James Mandigo, Vice-Provost, Enrolment Management & International

Carleton U:
Suzanne Blanchard, Vice-President, Students & Enrolment

Lakehead U:
Brian Stevenson, President & Vice-Chancellor
Adriel Martin, Student Ambassador
Kelsey Agnew, Student Ambassador

Laurentian U:
Dominic Giroux, President & Vice-Chancellor
Abegail Villaruel, Student Ambassador
Alexander Mayhew, Student Ambassador

Nipissing U:
Mike DeGagné, President & Vice-Chancellor
Victoria Bass, Student Ambassador
Deanna Jackett, Student Ambassador
Jordan Andrews, President, Nipissing University Student Union

OCADU:
Sara Diamond, President & Vice-Chancellor

UOIT:
Tim McTiernan, President & Vice-Chancellor
Happy Inibhunu, Student Ambassador
Alykhan Sumar, Student Ambassador
Devon McGrath, Student Ambassador

uOttawa:
Steve Perry, Dean of Science
Karen D’Souza, Student Ambassador
Chantal Breton, Student Ambassador

Queen’s U:
Stuart Pinchin, Executive Director, Undergraduate Admissions & Recruitment
Laura Wyatt, Intern, Undergraduate Admissions & Recruitment
Maura Mackenzie, Recruitment Representative

Ryerson U:
Mohamed Lachemi, President & Vice-Chancellor

Trent U:
Leo Groarke, President & Vice-Chancellor
Dexter Fichuk, Student Ambassador
Gytha Chapman, Student Ambassador

Western U:
Amit Chakma, President & Vice-Chancellor
Lori Gribbon, Associate Registrar, Admissions & Recruitment
Haley Everitt, Senior Campus Tour Guide
Maher Alazzam, Campus Tour Guide
Michael Maximino, Senior Campus Tour Guide

King’s UC:
Brandon Csendes, Admissions & Liaison Officer
Paul Wilton, Admissions & Liaison Officer

Wilfrid Laurier U:
Ty Ackerman, Student Ambassador
Jordan Baechler, Student Ambassador
Urbashi Das, Campus Ambassador Coordinator

uWindsor:
Alan Wildeman, President & Vice-Chancellor
John-Michael Lemaire, Student Ambassador
Abrial Cooke, Student Ambassador

OUAC:
Deanna Underwood, Manager of Communications


Thank you to all who agreed to be interviewed! And our apologies to those we missed because of time constraints. (We had just 1.5 days onsite this year.)

Recent episodes have examined the top reasons why people love attending the OUF, and new booths and recruitment marketing tactics, and Advice on Choosing a Program. Next week: Hot New Programs at Ontario Universities.

For exclusive early access, subscribe to our free email newsletter at www.eduvation.ca/subscribe

Oct 24, 2016

Ken Steele went to the Ontario Universities' Fair, in September 2016, and asked 45 experts for their best advice for young people trying to choose a program or field of study after high school. And these are people who ought to know: 11 university presidents, 9 recruiters and admissions professionals, and 25 current undergraduate students. (For 1080p version, see https://youtu.be/ng-xADfIkio )

In the end, there was consensus on 7 key pieces of advice you should keep in mind, if you're trying to make a decision about your post-secondary path:

1) Don't Panic!
2) Start Early
3) Follow Your Passion
4) It's OK Not to Know Yet
5) Don't Limit Yourself
6) Keep an Open Mind
7) University will Expand Your Horizons

Interviewed for this episode:

Algoma U:
Craig Chamberlin, President & Vice-Chancellor
Brad Lloyd, Admissions Advisor
Anna Stilin, Student Ambassador

Brock U:
Brian Hutchings, Acting President
James Mandigo, Vice-Provost, Enrolment Management & International

Carleton U:
Suzanne Blanchard, Vice-President, Students & Enrolment

Lakehead U:
Brian Stevenson, President & Vice-Chancellor
Adriel Martin, Student Ambassador
Kelsey Agnew, Student Ambassador

Laurentian U:
Dominic Giroux, President & Vice-Chancellor
Abegail Villaruel, Student Ambassador
Alexander Mayhew, Student Ambassador

Nipissing U:
Mike DeGagné, President & Vice-Chancellor
Victoria Bass, Student Ambassador
Deanna Jackett, Student Ambassador
Jordan Andrews, President, Nipissing University Student Union

OCADU:
Sara Diamond, President & Vice-Chancellor

UOIT:
Tim McTiernan, President & Vice-Chancellor
Happy Inibhunu, Student Ambassador
Alykhan Sumar, Student Ambassador
Devon McGrath, Student Ambassador

uOttawa:
Steve Perry, Dean of Science
Karen D’Souza, Student Ambassador
Chantal Breton, Student Ambassador

Queen’s U:
Stuart Pinchin, Executive Director, Undergraduate Admissions & Recruitment
Laura Wyatt, Intern, Undergraduate Admissions & Recruitment
Maura Mackenzie, Recruitment Representative

Ryerson U:
Mohamed Lachemi, President & Vice-Chancellor

Trent U:
Leo Groarke, President & Vice-Chancellor
Dexter Fichuk, Student Ambassador
Gytha Chapman, Student Ambassador

Western U:
Amit Chakma, President & Vice-Chancellor
Haley Everitt, Senior Campus Tour Guide
Maher Alazzam, Campus Tour Guide
Michael Maximino, Senior Campus Tour Guide

King’s UC:
Brandon Csendes, Admissions & Liaison Officer
Paul Wilton, Admissions & Liaison Officer

Wilfrid Laurier U:
Ty Ackerman, Student Ambassador
Jordan Baechler, Student Ambassador
Urbashi Das, Campus Ambassador Coordinator

uWindsor:
Alan Wildeman, President & Vice-Chancellor
John-Michael Lemaire, Student Ambassador
Abrial Cooke, Student Ambassador

OUAC:
Deanna Underwood, Manager of Communications


Thank you to all who agreed to be interviewed! And our apologies to those we missed because of time constraints. (We had just 1.5 days onsite this year.)

Recent episodes have examined the top reasons why people love attending the OUF, and new booths and recruitment marketing tactics. Next week: Advice on Choosing a University.

For exclusive early access, subscribe to our free email newsletter at www.eduvation.ca/subscribe

Oct 17, 2016

In the second episode from the 2016 Ontario Universities' Fair, Ken Steele surveys the exhibit floor and interviews university representatives to summarize what's new in student recruitment marketing this fall. (See the first, "Why Go to the OUF?" at https://youtu.be/CyXKcQ7fsac ). This podcast includes some flashback photos, video and even some unused interviews from previous years' OUFs, from 2006 to the present.

Data Collection: The underlying goal for student recruitment offices at the Fair is to collect contact information for as many prospective students as possible. As Deanna Underwood of OUAC explains, in previous years that meant that prospective students had to enter their contact information in 21 different ways, on paper, iPad, laptop or computer, at all the various booths. That also tended to mean that many universities offered prize incentives to collect data. Last year we interviewed Craig Chipps of Wilfrid Laurier about the branded hoodies they were giving away; Deanna MacQuarrie of uGuelph about their prizes ranging up to an iPhone 6; and both York's Jock Phippen and Carleton's Jean Mullan about their draws for free tuition.

All this repetitive data entry seemed pointless for students, and after years of discussion, this year finally introduced centralized data collection: the OUF Passport. Prospective students were encouraged to register online in advance, and thousands did so. Many more registered at the computer terminals in the OUF lobby, or on their smartphones with the assistance of staff at the university booths. By day two, universities were collecting more contacts than in previous years. In place of all the various contests of previous years, this year COU had a "money booth" for students.

Exhibit Booths: Ontario universities are investing six figures in spacious, professional booths, so they use them for years, with minor updates. (This year, Laurentian added more bilingual signage, Laurier added a new photo collage, and Windsor added its new tagline, "Promise.")

This year, considerable floorspace in the exhibits was freed up from the various desks and kiosks that were so critical for data collection. Many universities rearranged their booths to allow much more space for conversation. New booth layouts for Nipissing, Carleton and Brock focused on kiosks for each major faculty or program, where prospective students could speak with recruiters, faculty or current student ambassadors. Brock wanted to emphasize the transdisciplinary opportunities for students. Carleton wanted to leverage more technology, like video screens and an interactive robot, to engage students and tell its story. McMaster’s new booth adds many backlit images of campus and animated video screens, but unlike the open-concept designs, Mac’s booth seems to create corners and cubbies for small conversations to occur.

Western's Lori Gribbon took time to describe their brand-new exhibit, which utilizes the maximum 12-foot height, plenty of backlit graphics and video screens to convey a sense of the beautiful campus. They analyzed the previous booth, and modified the layout to optimize traffic flow. A new “student experience” corner focuses students on co-curricular and extra-curricular activities, from athletics to residence.

Virtual Reality: Last year, we reported that UOIT was pioneering the use of 3D (VR) campus tours using beta versions of Oculus Rift headsets. https://youtu.be/7YVIz2RMXCg Now that 3D video is supported on YouTube and Facebook, and easily available on most smartphones, the cost has come down and more universities are creating VR tours. Western shot dozens of 360° videos of campus, from residence rooms, classrooms and labs to outdoor orientation events. The videos are available on the Western welcome page, on Facebook and Twitter, and Western ambassadors had branded iCardboard viewers for prospective students and parents to take a look. uWindsor likewise had branded cardboard viewers for students. Lakehead was using plastic HooDoo viewers, which fasten to your head with velcro. Laurentian's Jean-Paul Rains showed us their ViewMaster brand viewers, using an app designed by Laurentian CompSci students. He explained that the initiative was very cost effective, using a tiny $500 Ricoh Theta S camera, $30 headsets, and $500 smartphones.

Travel Incentives: Algoma U has started offering all-expense-paid visits to its campus in Sault Ste Marie, for interested prospective students. President Craig Chamberlin says they provide transportation, housing and meals, and tour potential students around campus to meet their future faculty members and attend classes.

In the next episode, we’ll ask people at the OUF for their advice for high school students contemplating their post-secondary futures.

(For 1080p version, see https://youtu.be/p3u-K_15cOM )

Remember, subscribe to our free email newsletter to get exclusive early access to upcoming episodes. www.eduvation.ca/subscribe

Oct 10, 2016

Ken Steele goes on location at the largest PSE exhibition in North America, the Ontario Universities' Fair in Toronto. Over 2 days he interviewed 11 presidents, 9 front-line staff and 25 student ambassadors.

This week, we find out what they like best about the OUF, and why they recommend prospective students attend. It should be interesting to anyone who has ever attended the fair, or is considering it!

(For 1080p version, visit https://youtu.be/CyXKcQ7fsac )

Algoma U:
Craig Chamberlin, President & Vice-Chancellor
Brad Lloyd, Admissions Advisor
Anna Stilin, Student Ambassador

Brock U:
Brian Hutchings, Acting President
James Mandigo, Vice-Provost, Enrolment Management & International

Carleton U:
Suzanne Blanchard, Vice-President, Students & Enrolment

Lakehead U:
Brian Stevenson, President & Vice-Chancellor
Adriel Martin, Student Ambassador
Kelsey Agnew, Student Ambassador

Laurentian U:
Dominic Giroux, President & Vice-Chancellor
Abegail Villaruel, Student Ambassador
Alexander Mayhew, Student Ambassador

Nipissing U:
Mike DeGagné, President & Vice-Chancellor
Victoria Bass, Student Ambassador
Deanna Jackett, Student Ambassador
Jordan Andrews, President, Nipissing University Student Union

OCADU:
Sara Diamond, President & Vice-Chancellor

UOIT:
Tim McTiernan, President & Vice-Chancellor
Happy Inibhunu, Student Ambassador
Alykhan Sumar, Student Ambassador
Devon McGrath, Student Ambassador

uOttawa:
Steve Perry, Dean of Science
Karen D’Souza, Student Ambassador
Chantal Breton, Student Ambassador

Queen’s U:
Stuart Pinchin, Executive Director, Undergraduate Admissions & Recruitment
Laura Wyatt, Intern, Undergraduate Admissions & Recruitment
Maura Mackenzie, Recruitment Representative

Ryerson U:
Mohamed Lachemi, President & Vice-Chancellor

Trent U:
Leo Groarke, President & Vice-Chancellor
Dexter Fichuk, Student Ambassador
Gytha Chapman, Student Ambassador

Western U:
Amit Chakma, President & Vice-Chancellor
Lori Gribbon, Associate Registrar, Admissions & Recruitment
Haley Everitt, Senior Campus Tour Guide
Maher Alazzam, Campus Tour Guide
Michael Maximino, Senior Campus Tour Guide

King’s UC:
Brandon Csendes, Admissions & Liaison Officer
Paul Wilton, Admissions & Liaison Officer

Wilfrid Laurier U:
Ty Ackerman, Student Ambassador
Jordan Baechler, Student Ambassador
Urbashi Das, Campus Ambassador Coordinator

uWindsor:
Alan Wildeman, President & Vice-Chancellor
John-Michael Lemaire, Student Ambassador
Abrial Cooke, Student Ambassador

OUAC:
Deanna Underwood, Manager of Communications


Thank you to all who agreed to be interviewed! And our apologies to those we missed because of time constraints. (We had just 1.5 days onsite this year.) Also apologies to those who will be at the Ontario College Information Fair next month - unfortunately Ken's travel schedule prevents him from attending this year.

Watch for upcoming episodes about new booths and marketing tactics, advice for prospective students, how universities are evolving to serve the needs of 21st century learners, and much more. For exclusive early access, subscribe to our free email newsletter at www.eduvation.ca/subscribe

Meanwhile check out these past episodes about college and university fairs:

Overview - 2015 OUF - https://youtu.be/hD0dDn2iP3Q
Hot New Programs - 2015 OUF - https://youtu.be/O5c1OrH73RQ
Bringing the Campus to the 2015 OUF - https://youtu.be/7YVIz2RMXCg

The 2013 Ontario College Information Fair - https://youtu.be/jYO2JlqCQWI

The 2013 OUF - https://youtu.be/jyyMXXIMjYs

Sep 14, 2016

This week, Ken reviews this fall’s back-to-school college and university videos, from presidential welcomes to o-week excitement, from bubble gum records to Pokémon Go!

We looked at “O-Week Winners & Sinners” in a previous episode. https://youtu.be/imr8-zMyEDg This time, we’re focused on more official videos:

UPEI provided vital orientation information in their video. https://youtu.be/xzzWt_xswSY

Trinity Western University recaps the excitement of move-in day. https://youtu.be/jMm7Mw1FqNI

Ryerson University organized more than 1200 students, staff and faculty to “pop” the Guiness world record for bubble gum blowing. https://youtu.be/AgI0arSkyLI

But back-to-school videos also tackle “heavier” issues. In a previous episode we looked at campus and dorm room safety videos. https://youtu.be/NRPY2RSSfK8?t=2m1s

Respect and sexual consent campaigns are also widespread at this time of year, and for good reason: The first few weeks of school are when the vast majority of sexual assaults occur.
In an effort to keep things gender-neutral, this fall the Sexual Assault Resource Centre at Montreal’s Concordia University enlisted some unusual spokesfruit to explain sexual consent. https://youtu.be/zzuTjVwlcgo

Just as we’ve seen holiday greeting videos proliferating in December, it’s no surprise to see presidential “welcome back” videos in September. Most just capture a president’s welcome to new students, although others are specifically directed at staff and faculty, and some manage to incorporate some quirky humour, like this from St Lawrence College president Glenn Vollebregt: https://youtu.be/i2jSZd9wjYM

And then there is Pokémon Go, perhaps the viral sensation of the summer. Within weeks the new augmented reality game attracted more than 21 million active daily users in the US alone – more than Candy Crush or even Twitter! Old fogeys took delight in mocking the distracted gamers, but some Pokemon players “poked” fun at themselves: https://youtu.be/go-UKdfStHg

Colleges and universities quickly discovered that their campuses were popular locations for Pokemon hunting. If you take a left turn at Albuquerque, you’ll find plenty of Pokemon players at the University of New Mexico: https://youtu.be/m8siqgCkjB0

Many institutions quickly leveraged Pokemon to get students exploring more of the campus, like Wright State University in Ohio: https://youtu.be/Md1JgRxTQBU

Johnson County Community College, in Kansas, mapped their Pokestops and gyms: https://youtu.be/z9VO5le86gc

BCIT organized a real-life scavenger hunt they called Pokemon Go Day, to bring students, staff and their families to campus: https://youtu.be/DgGsiF85SWs

(If you haven’t already discussed ways to incorporate Pokemon Go into your next student recruitment cycle, your competitors have!)

At a time when public health experts are worried about the impact of a sedentary gaming lifestyle on North American young people, fans of Pokemon Go were quick to emphasize the exercise component of the game.

Campus student life and mental health professionals are hopeful that augmented reality games like Pokemon Go may create a stronger sense of community, particularly for introverts.

Naturally, school mascots were among the first to get into the Pokemon craze, like Duke the Lion at Florida’s Warner University: https://youtu.be/SxO-gFa-Jlo

This summer, some students were already starting to worry that their obsession with the game might be interfering with their studies, but at least one professor at UC Berkeley is playing along, and considering using Pokémon lures during his office hours. https://youtu.be/XZsudfgZ7iQ

In fact, within weeks Fresno City College announced a new Pokemon credit course in Phys Ed. https://youtu.be/ZtIpE9Yuy-8

Perhaps my favourite back-to-school video this year comes from the Student Union at Dalhousie University. They welcomed students back to campus with a rousing 3-minute music video, a tribute to their school colours, “Black and Gold.” https://youtu.be/QkeYEa9jKto

Don’t forget to subscribe to my free email newsletter, to get exclusive early access to upcoming episodes! www.eduvation.ca/subscribe

Aug 23, 2016

Governments invest in higher education hoping to see short-term economic benefits in the form of job creation, knowledge mobilization, and increasingly, the launch of entrepreneurial new start-up businesses. In this week’s episode, Ken Steele provides a quick overview of college and university research commercialization, from the first research parks to the latest business incubators and accelerators.

In many ways, academic culture is antithetical to entrepreneurship. Scholars and scientists are often perfectionists, conducting exhaustive research, consulting their peers for input and consensus, and avoiding career-limiting risks. Academic culture is centred around credibility, caution, and certainty. Successful entrepreneurs, on the other hand, are often shameless self-promoters, confident or even arrogant, first to market regardless of quality control, and frequently keeping trade secrets from their competitors.

Many question whether modern schools are the right environment in which to nurture entrepreneurs or innovators.
Typically, higher ed researchers transfer intellectual property to the private sector for commercialization. Last year, UBC licensed a potential treatment for drug-resistant prostate cancer to Roche Pharmaceuticals for more than $120 million.

Corporations have been partnering with research universities since the 1950s, in research parks like the Stanford Research Park, established in 1951. By the 1970s, it was home to some leading high-tech research facilities, like Xerox PARC, and it is often credited with being the spark that created Silicon Valley. Google itself was a spinoff of the research of 2 Stanford grad students, and Stanford still holds some lucrative Google patents today.

The largest university research park today is the Research Triangle Park in North Carolina, collocated to serve Duke University, UNC, and NC State. 50,000 employees and 10,000 contractors work at RTP for major corporations including IBM, Cisco, and GlaxoSmithKline.

But today, R&D is no longer the exclusive domain of major multinationals. A student or two with a good idea can take their business global in mere months, as Mark Zuckerberg did in 2004 when he launched Facebook from a Harvard dorm room. That’s probably what inspired the University of Waterloo to establish a “dormcubator,” the Velocity Residence, and 5 other branches of the incubator program including the Velocity Garage, the Foundry, Velocity Science, and more.

uWaterloo Velocity video: https://youtu.be/vEbKt6Ho9z0

As North American employment is increasingly shifting towards startups and freelancing, business incubators have been multiplying. In the US alone, there are more than a thousand. California’s Y Combinator has funded more than 1,000 companies now worth $65 billion, and admission to their program is more competitive than Harvard or Yale.

UBI Global, headquartered in Sweden, looked at more than 1,200 university accelerators and incubators to arrive at its ranking of the top incubators of 2015. First place went to England’s SetSquared Partnership, a collaboration between the universities of Bath, Bristol, Exeter, Southampton and Surrey. With 6 sites at the 5 research-intensive universities, SetSquared has helped more than a thousand companies raise over £1 billion, and create 9,000 jobs. The #2 incubator in the world is the Innovation Incubation Center at Chaoyang University of Technology in Taiwan.

The top university incubator in North America, #3 in the world, is the DMZ at Ryerson University. The DMZ has launched more than 180 companies, creating more than 1,000 jobs, and attracting $70 million in seed funding. Politicians and the business community praise the DMZ for creating better quality jobs, and harnessing the innovative capacity of the nation. Ryerson has launched other incubation zones, including the Fashion Zone, Design Fabrication Zone, ZoneStartups India, the Transmedia Zone, the Legal Innovation Zone, and the Social Ventures Zone.

Ryerson DMZ video: https://youtu.be/IGncBRPg1TI

As we mentioned previously, colleges and universities are emphasizing experiential learning opportunities, and incubators are just one high-profile approach. Some academics question whether higher education should really be in the business of incubating businesses, but as more and more students graduate into a freelance and innovation economy, business incubators make sense as an extension of campus career services and research commercialization. If we want to prepare our students for successful futures and meaningful citizenship, they are going to require an entrepreneurial mindset.

Jul 5, 2016

Increasingly careerist students, at colleges and universities alike, are attracted to work-integrated learning opportunities. This week, Ken continues his series on innovations in teaching and learning with a closer look at Experiential Learning.

Colleges like Sault College have been promoting hands-on learning opportunities for years, like their Field Camp for outdoor recreation students. https://youtu.be/gCfa_LFTRHQ

Calgary’s SAIT Polytechnic emphasizes the value of real-world, career-focused education in their “Get Real” commercials. https://youtu.be/9cOUKB6nfic

Algonquin College nicely shows how a daycare, flight deck, kichen, and construction site are all “my classroom.” https://youtu.be/AXnbZhIoU64

Universities Canada reports than more than 50% of undergrad students at Canadian universities now get some form of experiential learning opportunity – although this could be as simple as a few labs, or as intense as a co-op work term or study abroad experience.

The so-called “Maker movement” is taking hold on hundreds of campuses across North America. At the University of Southern California, the Iovine & Young Academy (named for the two Beats Electronics co-founders) offers space for problem-based learning, 3D printing, rapid prototyping and more. Even smaller institutions, like BC’s Douglas College, have opened MakerSpaces, sometimes in prominent public locations.

New YouTube CreatorSpaces are opening around the world, recently at Ryerson University. Workshops are open to creators with at least 1,000 channel subscribers. (We could really use your help getting to 1,000 – have you subscribed to this channel yet?)

It’s telling that a recent survey of graduating college and university students found that the 3 most important “academic activities,” in their opinion, were internships, co-ops, and work experiences.

Colleges have been experimenting with creating on-campus work opportunities like the student-managed farm at Lakeland College in Vermilion Alberta, the oldest and largest in the world. Or the campus hotel and conference centre at Olds College. Or the “Learning Enterprises” established at Niagara College, which give hundreds of students work experience and often generate a million-dollar surplus for the college to boot! At St Lawrence College, the on-campus ad agency “Spark” gives marketing students experience, and also creates videos, video games, and other digital resources for college instructors.

But we may just be streaming kids into career-directed education too young. Since 1935, Raisbeck Aviation High School, just outside Seattle, has focused students on careers in aviation from grade 9 onward. NAIT and the Edmonton School Boards have announced a new “Collegiate for Science, Technology & Trades” high school to open adjacent to the NAIT campus. Calgary’s West Island College, an independent high school, offers several “Institute” programs focused on careers in Business, Health, and Engineering.

It’s no wonder, either, that as students place more and more emphasis on work experiences, many are opting to take a “gap year” off from school to pursue employment instead. Uncollege.org is capitalizing on this movement, offering students a self-directed gap year complete with travel, mentors, and internship for just $16,000. It’s like university, but without the classes or the grades.

Finally, just #ICYMI, we highlight a “Strive” video from Nova Scotia Community College that focuses on one student’s experiential learning journey in the Therapeutic Recreation program. https://youtu.be/ilcPb8CzuzE

Next time, we’ll take a look at one specific form of experiential learning that seems to be in ascendance: campus incubators and accelerators. To get exclusive early access to upcoming episodes, subscribe to our free email newsletter at www.Eduvation.ca/subscribe

Jun 29, 2016

Passive learning methods like lectures, readings and demonstrations remain the mainstay in higher ed, but research tells us that active learning approaches can have much more lasting impact on student learning outcomes.

From small group discussions and project-based learning to experiential field schools and peer teaching, in this episode Ken sums up some compelling evidence from UBC, Queen's, and Guelph that seem to demonstrate that students learn significantly more from deliberate practice and enquiry-based learning than from lecture. Students who collaboratively observe a video of a tutoring session - not a lecture - learn better. Those who made mistakes and were then corrected learned 60% more than those who were guided straight to the correct answer. There are lasting benefits to enquiry-based learning seminars, particularly for "B" students.

Queen's has opened Ellis Hall, a new facility featuring active learning classrooms. https://youtu.be/bJDCgeaK44E

80% of Generation Z prefer to study with friends, and 40% will do so on Skype if not in person. That social orientation of students may be driving the creation of learning commons and social space on campuses from St Mary's U to the U of Calgary.

Small adjustments to the lecture theatre can improve student engagement. George Brown College's new learning studios allow classes to shift from lecture to group discussions and back. Iowa State U has installed seats that swivel 240 degrees in double-wide rows that allow for group work. Oregon State U opened the new Learning Innovation Center last fall, including 2 "in the round" lecture halls that hold 600 students, all within 15 feet of the instructor. Active learning classrooms date back at least 20 years, to the SCALE-UP classrooms at North Carolina State U. Students sit in clusters of 9, and students learn better 88% of the time (particularly female students). The model has been emulated at hundreds of campuses.

UBC's Sauder School of Business recently opened a Flexible Learning Lab. https://youtu.be/LA4Sqb4jrlw

Next week: Experiential Learning. Subscribe now so you don't miss an episode! www.eduvation.ca/subscribe

Just #ICYMI, check out Red River College's new commercial, featuring plenty of active learning: https://youtu.be/giUez0f-N2g

 

For the hi-res version of this episode, see https://youtu.be/LhlkZuC8Kzc 

Jun 22, 2016

For more than a thousand years, students have been gathering in lecture halls to listen to the "sage on the stage." But shorter attention spans, new technologies, and empirical testing of learning outcomes have led us to question the tried and true historical "transmission" model of education. In this episode, Ken Steele gives a brief lecture on "the Death of Lecture."

Check out how familiar a 14th-century lecture hall at the Universite di Bologne looks.

Former Quest University president David Helfand explains how the human brain is wired for two-way communication - and the lecture is the opposite of that. https://youtu.be/-J8PcPC7l5U

fMRI studies have demonstrated the impact of curiosity on the brain's ability to soak up new information.

Gen Y and Z have significantly decreased attention spans. They don't have the patience for a 60-minute lecture, and the Columbia University TEDx organizers worry that they don't have the focus for a 16-minute TED talk either. https://youtu.be/wRwPoR707UI

Hundreds of studies have demonstrated that students in lecture classes are 1.5x as likely to fail the course. The lecture is actually "toxic" to student learning, but large first-year lectures subsidize upper-year seminars and graduate studies.

In the past century, most of the innovation in undergraduate teaching and learning has amounted to little more than scaling an outmoded industrial model of education, designed to graduate students into the industrial economy of the 1930s. We need to re-engineering our approach for the 21st century.

Instructors often underuse the active learning methodologies, to rely on passive methods like lecture and demonstrations. Next time, we'll take a closer look at active learning in the classroom.

#ICYMI, Trinity Western University has a dynamic new commercial - and out of 90 seconds, just 1.5 show students in a lecture hall. Seems like a wise idea! https://youtu.be/INPUwp2Fz3k

For exclusive early access to upcoming episodes, subscribe to the Eduvation newsletter! www.eduvation.ca/subscribe

For the hi-res version of this episode, see https://youtu.be/yW_3asg92zM 

 

Apr 22, 2016

Ken Steele distills dozens of interviews on the floor of North America's largest higher ed trade show, the Ontario Universities' Fair. This week we look specifically at what new programs are attracting student attention. With more than 100,000 prospective students and parents flooding the OUF, it’s a massive market test.

Unique Signature Programs:
Including Carleton’s Bachelor of Global & International Studies; Lakehead’s Outdoor Recreation, Mining, Forestry and Environmental Studies programs; Laurentian’s Forensic Science, Sports Administration, and Human Kinetics programs, and new Masters in Indigenous Relations; Trent’s Child & Youth Studies and Communications programs at their Durham campus; and the Fine & Performing Arts programs in Brock’s brand new facilities.

Professional Programs:
Including Science, Engineering, and Commerce at Guelph; Business and new Bilingual Engineering degrees at Laurentian; and UOIT’s new Mechatronics Engineering program.

Health, Medicine & Social Work:
Including Biomedical and Nursing programs at Laurentian; a new Biomedical Sciences program at Trent; and a new Health Sciences program and downtown facilities for Social Work studetns at Windsor.

New Law Programs:
The first new law school in Ontario in 43 years opened at Lakehead 3 years ago, with a focus on natural resources, sole practitioner law, and aboriginal law. Windsor’s dual Juris Doctorate program with the University of Detroit Mercy allows graduates to practice law in both Canada and the US. Laurier just signed a 2+3+1 agreement with the UK’s University of Sussex Law School, which allows students to enroll at Laurier and wind up with a Laurier BA, a British LLB, and be prepared to pass the Ontario Bar Exam as well.
Video Game Design:

UOIT has a Game Development & Entrepreneurship program, which has been very popular and has quite competitive admissions. Brock has a new interdisciplinary program in Video Game Design, offered jointly with Niagara College.

University/College Collaborations:
For more than a decade, the University of Guelph-Humber has been a success story for large-scale collaboration, but at the program level many Ontario universities and colleges have collaborations. Lakehead is partnering with Georgian College in Orillia to offer an Electrical Engineering program, and have others in development. Trent has a strong relationship with Durham College and UOIT, and with Fleming College, which has an environmental science focus as well. Laurentian is exploring several new pathways with College Boréal and Cambrian College in Sudbury.

Ken closes with excerpts from a fun video by USC Viterbi, the NAE, and Funny or Die, which explores what it would look like if the E! Network covered Engineers like celebrities: https://youtu.be/P-OBJNkCanY

Remember to subscribe free to the Eduvation Loop email to get exclusive early access to upcoming episodes, and now also Ken’s “Eduvation at a Glance” visual summary of exciting developments in higher ed. www.eduvation.ca/subscribe

Mar 31, 2016

In this special 25-minute episode, Ken distills the highlights of recent North American college and university pranks and hoaxes for April Fool’s Day (and his producer, John, plays pranks on in post-production.)

There are 10 popular targets for higher ed April Fools hoaxes:

  • Name Changes
  • Mascots
  • Improbable Infrastructure
  • Celebrity Students
  • Cats!
  • Absurd New Programs
  • Campus Security
  • Millennial Students
  • The Language Itself
  • Deep Anxieties

 

Ken also offers 5 tips for would-be pranksters:

  • Credibility: Suspend disbelief with credible spokespeople and professional production values.
  • Credible Details: Weave in facts that sound almost believable.
  • Absurdity: Gradually the facts and sound bites should get more and more absurd. This is the payoff for your joke, so make it good!
  • Puns: It would seem most people can’t issue an April 1 media release without tons of wordplay.
  • Reveal: Don’t hit us over the head; let us have the fun of gradually realizing that this is a hoax.

 

Here are some of the videos featured in this episode:

 

Calvin College security - https://youtu.be/XGOWClLLrXw

Biola University math prof - https://youtu.be/blOrY-nEGaE

BBC spaghetti harvest - https://youtu.be/tVo_wkxH9dU

Pittsburg State name - https://youtu.be/medsLfL7rec

Luther College “fighting gnomes” - https://youtu.be/O7p8uIfsGl8

Missouri State’s “Scrapper Squirrel” - https://youtu.be/epMg7r9KAnY

University of Findlay monorail - https://youtu.be/Mrk9zm4lJDQ

University of Nebraska–Lincoln Feline Recruitment Studies - https://youtu.be/EUJewvx6Szw

Colgate University School of Dentistry - https://youtu.be/psO-hLMJUGc

University of Michigan School of Public Health - Hipstera - https://youtu.be/O8T2-FVYPMA

Brigham Young University Hotel Harold - https://youtu.be/57dSOhALb-c

 

And our absolute favourites:

Berklee College of Music adds the membranophone - https://youtu.be/Rx17-Axqtt4

Simon Fraser University “Healthy Campus Initiative” - https://youtu.be/sMWCw9G8Txg

Simon Fraser University “Satellite Campus” - https://youtu.be/ZjF7pmcAm-c

Simon Fraser University “Campus Traffic Management” - https://youtu.be/U0UqHM6qOFg

 

Remember to subscribe to our free email newsletter now for exclusive early access to upcoming episodes!

http://eduvation.ca/subscribe/

 

Mar 24, 2016

This week, Ken completes his 3-part review of higher ed branding in 2015 with a look at “New Names & Nicknames,” from DMZ to uVic! (Part 1 was “Cautionary Tales & Cautious Rebrandings” https://youtu.be/m2LF3rGiMLc . Part 2 was “Bold New Brands of 2015” https://youtu.be/pxmRfUfzZ5o .)

Without a doubt, institutions are loathe to lose decades of brand equity and recognition by changing their names. Generally it occurs only when the institution’s mandate has changed significantly, such as when a college gains university status, or an institute becomes a polytechnic. (Most recently it was SIAST becoming Saskatchewan Polytechnic.)

For years we’ve also seen a pretty widespread trend toward dropping adjectives like “regional” and “community” from college names, and minimizing or eliminating the use of the word “college” itself.

Last spring, Saskatchewan’s Southeast Regional College launched a bright new brand identity without the word “Regional.”

The AUCC rechristened itself “Universities Canada” last year, launching a “dynamic” new visual identity using a diamond rather than a square, to symbolize convergence, such as at a crossroads, a town square, or a university quad. https://youtu.be/cYeXSlzYIsw

Last year we also saw Fanshawe College announce the Don Smith School of Building Technology, UBC name the Peter A. Allard School of Law, and Wilfrid Laurier University rename the Laziridis School of Business & Economics.

Higher ed more often shortens names than changing them completely, such as when Ryerson University’s Digital Media Zone adopted the official name “DMZ” last spring.

Ryerson University itself launched a refreshed visual identity last summer, featuring fresh new colours, a slightly modernized typeface, and a bit of “out of the box” symbolism. The positioning strategy emphasizes 5 key differentiators from other Toronto institutions, and we look at two quick brand videos to see it in action. In keeping with our “nicknames” topic, Ryerson also revealed two abbreviated logos for use in informal situations, and social media.
Q&A with Sheldon Levy: https://youtu.be/i3Y7Ln2slyc
Mind & Action: https://youtu.be/INllQ597-1U

Last February, the University of Victoria finally embraced the nickname, “uVic,” by which they have been affectionately known for years. The dynamic new brand includes refreshed colours, a new wordmark, and new graphic elements including a wavy “connective thread” and some playful birds, martlets, drawn from the coat of arms. https://youtu.be/gsARvoBJCoU

One of the challenges to adopting a shorter name for marketing purposes is opposition from internal and external stakeholders. I think perhaps uVic learned from the example set by Western University back in 2012. Critics thought the name geographically inaccurate, although frankly there are dozens of “Northwesterns” and “Southwesterns” in the eastern US. The new identity solved many technical issues, and introduced an elegant system of sub-brands that is the nicest I have seen anywhere.

So we’ve seen colleges and universities use several strategies to pave the way for a new name or brand. UCFV adopted an acronym, Malaspina a memorable icon, CBU stripped away all semblance of a logo, and uVic made it clear that the old logo will continue in widespread use.

The real work of rebranding an academic community isn’t creative work at all; the most challenging aspects are consultation, research, consensus building, and easing the campus into a new identity. Too many top-tier ad agencies have underestimated this challenge, or badly mishandled it. It’s the aspect of higher ed brand strategy that I think is most exciting, and it’s the reason I developed my proprietary Brand Chemistry™ model. www.BrandChemistry.ca

And this week’s #ICYMI: a new recruitment theme from Dalhousie University, “Find what drives you.” Nicely addresses concerns about an intellectually-challenging student experience. https://youtu.be/2ysWuPN62og

Coming up next time: a surprise episode! Watch for it later in March, or subscribe to our free email newsletter now for exclusive early access. http://eduvation.ca/subscribe/

Mar 15, 2016

Last week, Ken shared some classic cautionary tales of higher ed brand misfires, and we looked at some particularly cautious new brands from Canadian colleges and universities, perhaps in response. (Last week: https://youtu.be/m2LF3rGiMLc ) This week, we look at the flipside: provocative brands and campaigns that deliberately court controversy.

Aggressive Competition:

We start with some examples of pretty aggressive “poaching” campaigns for student recruitment in other institutions’ backyards:

York University led the way with their “question every angle” campaign, and notably a subway station domination strategy at the doorstep of the University of Toronto.

Memorial University of Newfoundland has bought up bus shelters along routes to major undergraduate university campuses across Canada, to promote their Grad Studies “on the edge.”

The University of Saskatchewan has advertised on Calgary transit, dissing Edmonton as a study destination.

And St Mary’s University has bought billboards across the street from Cape Breton University, encouraging students to go to Halifax for the right education.


Going Negative:

Even more controversial campaigns in recent years have mocked major competitors:

Lakehead University took on Yale and then-president George Bush in their 2006 recruitment campaign, “Yale Shmale.”

Algoma University mocked the fictional “Colossal U” in their 2008 recruitment campaign. But spending your marketing budget establishing name recognition for an imaginary competitor seems too clever by half.


Sex Sells:

Much simpler are the higher ed campaigns that appeal directly to the teenage libido:

Education New Zealand urged Asian students to “Get further away from your parents” in a short-lived 2007 campaign with pretty racy ads.

Algoma University’s 2009 campaign, “Plan your escape,” likewise encouraged Toronto students to get 681 kms away from their parents.

Ohio’s Oberlin College got explicit with their 2011 microsite, “WhyTheF*ckShouldIChooseOberlin.com”, and got 1.5 million pageviews in their first few months as a reward.

In 2015, though, the Université de Moncton outclassed them all with a sexy ad that garnered $300,000 in media headlines, and moreover boosted out-of-province student enrolment by 66%!
https://youtu.be/hSwSIALZZqE


Just Plain Bold:

But a brand campaign can be bold without being controversial, or explicit. In 2015, Calgary’s Bow Valley College launched a great new slogan, “Success Rises,” and a social justice fundraiser to boot, “1,000 Women Rising.” It’s memorable, emotional, and nicely done. https://youtu.be/bjAwQsfykC0 https://youtu.be/qLFYfxUDJcw

But of course, good ideas attract imitators quickly, and BVC’s “Rise” was picked up less than a year later by the massive University of Phoenix, which has just launched its new brand platform, “We Rise.” https://youtu.be/N98RB1LK12o


A Bold Athletic Brand:

Finally in this episode, Ken shares a gritty, powerful new brand and campaign for Stingers Athletics at Montreal’s Concordia University. You don’t want to miss it, just #ICYMI!
https://youtu.be/n_vQv05ZpZs


Next week, we’ll wrap up our review of 2015 with a look back at some new names and nicknames in Canadian higher ed branding.


Brand Consulting:

Don’t forget that Ken Steele is available to conduct higher ed brand audits, competitive audits, and campus Brand Chemistry™ workshops and presentations. Check out www.BrandChemistry.ca for more information.

 

NOTE: For the first time we are uploading at standard podcast definition instead of 720p. Let us know if this is a major impediment. 1080p is available on our YouTube channel as always.

Mar 8, 2016

For the next few episodes, Ken Steele returns to the Brand Chemistry™ Lab to analyze recent trends in higher ed brand identities and marketing campaigns. This week, we look at some notable brand mis-steps that have become cautionary tales for campus marketers, and the inevitable result: some very cautious, gradual rebrandings that don’t risk passionate opposition from traditional-minded stakeholders like students, faculty, and alumni.

Particularly for smaller, remote institutions experiencing the early effects of declining demographics, it’s critical to develop the visibility a strong brand can support. In recent years, many higher ed institutions have hired top-notch ad agencies to develop their visual identities and marketing campaigns, but there are definite risks to that approach. Branding an academic community is significantly more political a process than branding a consumer product like beer or fast food. Presidents don’t have the authority of corporate CEOs, faculty aren’t as compliant as typical employees, and students are a complete wild card. Not only does the process demand patience and plenty of consultation, but it also demands a marketer’s “A” game; a campus full of brilliant critical thinkers will quickly find any fault possible.

Cautionary Tales:

In Fredericton New Brunswick, St Thomas University’s student union discovered what happens when a design for your orientation week program is actually plagiarized from a broadway musical.

The University of Dayton, in Ohio, launched a new brand for its Flyers athletics, which was promptly criticized by students for appearing to promote venereal disease instead.

The University of California system attempted to launch a new, modern icon to unite the ten campuses in the UC system. But stakeholders objected to the ugly graphic, which suggested nothing so much as a flushing toilet.

And the University of Waterloo undertook an extensive strategic rebranding process in 2008, only to be sideswiped at the last moment when the proposed logo was leaked online.


Cautious Rebrandings:

In part because of these prominent brand debacles, many college and university rebrandings in recent years have been extraordinarily cautious and traditional.

Brandon University, in Manitoba, launched a new visual identity based on their traditional coat of arms in late 2014. Although it dropped the Greek motto, and streamlined the crest to focus on the shield, it retained the colour scheme and didn’t stir up opposition. The new look, sans serif typeface, and bold chevron create a much more contemporary and professional identity, without alienating traditionalists.

The Université du Québec en Outaouais redesigned its visual identity last year. Although the new UQO acronym is a starting departure in colour and typeface from the previous logo, both were pretty cold and corporate, and the change is unlikely to generate much passion one way or the other. The new marketing campaign, “Être plus près, aller plus loin” (be closer, go further) is a pretty common tagline for a regional institution speaking to local students.

The University of Ottawa launched a new brand identity in late 2014 that also followed a university marketing convention, in urging students to “Defy the Conventional.” But the new campaign, featuring bright neon colours and cartoon-like illustrations, is a notably creative variation on the theme. https://youtu.be/fhEcDhTDt3I

Finally, a different sort of caution is evident in the gradual “unbranding” of Cape Breton University. In late 2014, CBU announced a new brand that used only a “temporary wordmark” set in the most boring typeface possible, and the single bold word “Happen.” The brand concept looks intriguing, although the creative executions haven’t really appeared yet. In fact, CBU deliberately went a full year without a logo, perhaps to help minimize opposition from those who might have been fierce defenders of the previous visual identity. The new logo for CBU is expected imminently, but this “slow-motion” rebranding process is yet another way to cope with passionate stakeholders attached to the status quo.

Next week, we’ll look at some examples of intentionally provocative brands and campaigns, deliberately courting controversy. It happens more often than you might think, and the results can be striking.

Just #ICYMI, check out Mount St Vincent University’s new recruitment campaign, featuring 15-second ads using thousands of dominos as a metaphor for the student’s path. https://youtu.be/yQ0oVRMXcBo

Ken Steele is available to consult on institutional brand strategy, deliver presentations or facilitate workshops about institutional differentiation and recruitment marketing. For more information http://eduvation.ca/brand/

For early access to upcoming episodes, subscribe to Ken’s free email newsletter at http://eduvation.ca/subscribe/

Feb 24, 2016

Last week, Ken Steele looked back at some major PR headaches sparked by students and faculty, from white student unions to a blogging board member. https://youtu.be/qn0ylCsR9Jw

But some of the biggest media relations migraines of all start at the top, with board chairs and presidents.

It’s a considerable risk for a multi-million-dollar organization to rest its reputation squarely on the shoulders of a single individual. Last year Subway’s spokesperson, Jared, went to prison on child sex charges. And the president of a small Christian college in South Carolina resigned in disgrace over his sexual indiscretions.

At Western University, president Amit Chakma’s double pay made headlines in 2015, but he had done nothing wrong in accepting a contract with administrative leave. The bigger issue was that the board committee normally responsible for negotiating such contracts was bypassed, and the board chair, Chirag Shah, seemed responsible. A task force made 22 recommendations for governance reform at Western, and Shah stepped off the board at the end of his term last November.

The year’s biggest PR headache, though, was the abrupt resignation of UBC president Arvind Gupta, only a year into his term. The board hired a passionate reformer with a bold agenda. Gupta didn’t have the usual university administration experience, but instead had founded Mitacs, a fairly small nonprofit. From the beginning, Gupta made it clear he wanted to make UBC more relevant to the needs of society, and he knew that driving change would make some people uneasy.

The board itself started growing uneasy, with the departure of senior executives like provost David Farrar, and rumblings of poor morale across the institution. There were controversial, perhaps political, appointments made to the president’s office. Board chair John Montalbano wrote strongly-worded emails to Gupta, urging him to “refrain from thinking controversial thoughts out loud,” and expressing concern about his “willful disregard for the board’s authority.” With the leaking of these emails, in January 2016, Gupta went public with his side of the story, expressing regret that he didn’t push back harder against the board, and instead chose to resign.

The abrupt departure of a president, after significant executive changes and barely concealed friction with the board chair, would have been bad enough for the media relations people tasked with managing the situation. But then, business professor Jennifer Berdahl wrote a blog suggesting that Gupta lost a “masculinity contest.”

The blog itself might have gone unnoticed amid a storm of speculation, if not that board chair Montalbano took exception. He felt “hurt” that accusations of racism and sexism were being hurled by a professor he knew personally. And so, one fateful day, he called her to discuss the blog directly. Montalbano claimed he was extraordinarily careful, throughout the call, to confirm that Berdahl felt comfortable discussing the blog, and that she did not feel her academic freedom was being threatened or compromised.

But a few days later, Berdahl either changed her mind or found her voice, and a new blog railed against Montalbano’s attempt to intimidate her and suppress her right to academic free speech. She went to the media, and claimed he threatened to discuss the “trouble she was causing” with her dean. Ultimately a fact-finding investigation agreed with Berdahl, and Montalbano stepped down from the UBC board in August.

 

Global News interview with Arvind Gupta: http://globalnews.ca/news/2484938/watch-one-on-one-with-former-ubc-president-arvind-gupta/

 

Global News interview with John Montalbano:

http://globalnews.ca/video/2173090/extended-ubc-board-chair-john-montalbano

 

CBC interview with Jennifer Berdahl:

http://www.cbc.ca/player/play/2673915157

 

Some of the biggest dysfunctions on college and university campuses occur when outsiders attempt to push an agenda without truly appreciating the subtleties of academic politics. It’s vitally important to recognize that universities aren’t so much hierarchies, as loose democracies.

Even after someone is fired, the media migraine can continue. Last year, former president Ralph Weeks sued Medicine Hat College for wrongful dismissal in 2013, and Ilene Busch-Vishniac sued the University of Saskatchewan too.

Scandals and controversies can explode in the media like a reputational bomb. There’s no point attempting to bury an inconvenient truth on campus, because it will always surface, and when it comes to light the damage will be even worse. It’s always preferable to identify potentially explosive issues early, be proactive in treating them, and transparent in reporting them to the campus community. Best to find the bomb and defuse it, than have it go off unexpectedly and take everyone by surprise.

BTW, Ken Steele is available to facilitate workshops or present at conferences and on campuses about PR headaches and how to manage media relations in a crisis. More information at http://eduvation.ca/pr-headaches-how-to-treat-them/

 

#ICYMI, this week we feature an excerpt from UNB Fredericton’s “dog’s eye view of campus” featuring Lucy. https://youtu.be/aaxJwxOKrQk

For exclusive preview access, a week early, to future episodes of "Ten with Ken", be sure to subscribe to Eduvation's "in the loop" email newsletter, at http://www.eduvation.ca/subscribe/

 

Feb 10, 2016

This week, Ken Steele looks back at some of the biggest PR headaches afflicting Canadian colleges and universities in the past year, looking for common causes and some lessons we can learn about crisis communications.

Academia may well be the most challenging environment in which to manage messaging, with opinionated faculty, unrestrained students, and concerned parents, alumni, and taxpayers in the community.

Without a doubt, many PR headaches are caused by the students, intentionally or not. In previous episodes we’ve looked at sexist behavior in social media and during orientation, but Dalhousie’s School of Dentistry struggled with the biggest PR headache of 2015, when 13 male students posted sexist, misogynistic remarks to a supposedly private Facebook group. Protests, suspensions, a task force – in all, it cost the school about $650,000. And the underlying culture of sexism should have been addressed years earlier.

CBC’s “This Hour Has 22 Minutes” parody commercial – https://youtu.be/RtffrcWeMf0

Last year the University of Toronto had to ramp up campus security in the wake of a series of online threats posted by an anonymous user named “Kill Feminists.” The University of Ottawa coped with the fallout of the alleged sex assault by male hockey players, and a $6 million class action lawsuit. Several universities tore down posters for “White Students Unions.” 2 Montréal CÉGEPs had to cope with more than a dozen students leaving Canada to join Jihad.

But of course, students aren’t the only creative, intelligent and outspoken people on your campus. Last year we saw plenty of PR headaches caused by faculty members, too.
In the UK there was Nobel-prize-winning biochemist Tim Hunt, and his ill-advised attempt at humour about the distraction of women scientists in the lab. (His botched apology made things far worse, and cost him his job.) In Ontario it was St Lawrence College business professor Rick Coupland, who was fired for violent homophobic comments last summer.

At Carleton University, biology professor Root Gorelick has caused a stir with his blog, commenting on his experiences as a member of the university board of governors. He sees himself as elected by faculty, with an obligation to his constituents, but the rest of the board and the administration are concerned about the ways in which his blogs do not always agree with the official minutes. He is accused of attacking the personal integrity of fellow board members. Carleton has put in place a new code of conduct for board members, making it clear that governors must not criticize decisions once they have been made. Several campus groups are concerned that Gorelick may be removed for his refusal to sign this “gag order.”

It seems pretty clear that when students or faculty behave badly, the institution needs to condemn their actions swiftly and unambiguously, suspend the perpetrators, start a thorough investigation, and possibly a restorative justice process. The institution may have to address the problem, through enhanced campus security, harassment policies, or codes of conduct. Sometimes swift action will lead to accusations of overreaction, such as at Ottawa and Dalhousie, where potentially innocent students are considered guilty by association. But these responses seemed to be the most popular approach in 2015.

Next time we’ll look at some of the most serious higher ed headaches of all. And as the metaphor might suggest, they often start at the top, with presidents and board chairs.

Meanwhile you might like to check out our review of the biggest higher ed headaches of 2014 - https://youtu.be/TJaZsXv68s4

Ken Steele is available to facilitate workshops or present at conferences and on campuses about PR headaches and how to manage media relations in a crisis. More information at http://eduvation.ca/pr-headaches-how-to-treat-them/

#ICYMI, check out ASAP Science’s a capella parody of Taylor Swift’s hit song, which they called “Science Style” - https://youtu.be/sWwd5vks9n8

For exclusive preview access, a week early, to future episodes of "Ten with Ken", be sure to subscribe to Eduvation's "in the loop" email newsletter, at http://www.eduvation.ca/subscribe/

Feb 3, 2016

This week, Ken Steele completes his countdown of the ten biggest trends impacting North American higher education in 2015, with the top 4: from political correctness and personal safety to major demographic shifts.

If you missed part 1, check it out first: https://youtu.be/bziLQbNEXcI

Trigger Warning: The topics of trigger warnings and sexual assault may be disturbing to some viewers. Discretion is advised.


4) Indigenous Content:

Even before the recommendations of Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission, institutions began announcing new mandatory indigenous content in their curricula. Students at the University of Winnipeg proposed mandatory courses in indigenous history or culture. Lakehead University announced that it would introduce indigenous perspectives into courses across all faculties. UBC’s Sauder School of Business and the UBC Okanagan School of Nursing both announced that they would be integrating Aboriginal content. The new president at the University of Saskatchewan declared that he would make indigenization his top priority. And the Law Faculties at UBC and Lakehead had both established mandatory courses in Aboriginal Law and intercultural training.


3) Zero Tolerance:

Last year we saw significant mainstream attention being paid to microaggressions on campus, and ongoing debate about trigger warnings for the curriculum. Faculty, most of whom are Baby Boomers or Gen Xers, are alarmed by the rising tide of political correctness and its potential to undermine academic freedom and free speech on campus. Generation Y students, on the other hand, take free speech for granted, but in a social media era have learned to retaliate against even the subtlest prejudice with a firestorm of outrage. Last year, several top comedians declared that they would no longer perform on campuses because students just couldn’t take a joke. A controversial prof at Laurentian asked his students to sign a waiver acknowledging coarse language in his lectures. Universities introduced microaggression training in their faculty orientations, collective agreements, and more. The Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms ranked Canadian universities and gave 15 universities and 26 student unions grades of “F”.


2) Sex Assault Protocols:

Although long-term trends in the incidences of sex assault on campus are debated, we saw an immense public spotlight focused on the issue last year. First there was the fallout of a discredited campus rape story published (and then retracted) by Rolling Stone magazine. The release of The Hunting Ground, a full-length documentary about Ivy League schools covering up rape to protect their brands. A Columbia student carrying a mattress with her everywhere on campus, including to her graduation. Task force recommendations at the University of Ottawa, in the wake of a sex assault that resulted in the suspension of its men’s hockey team. Rape allegations at Royal Military College. And then there was the CBC’s ranking of colleges and universities based on sex assaults reported in the previous 5 years. Across the country, presidents announced task forces and new policies and protocols, student unions and mental health services launched awareness campaigns and bystander intervention programs. There are even smartphone apps designed to secure affirmative sexual consent in the heat of the moment.

Full official trailer for The Hunting Ground: https://youtu.be/GBNHGi36nlM

Full ad for Alberta’s #IBelieveYou: https://youtu.be/VruBjg_dc2Q


1) Peak Campus:

Most significant of all, last year there was just no denying that enrolment was plateauing or declining at many campuses across North America. In the US, the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center reported that college enrolment declined in 2015 for the third straight year, particularly at 2-year community colleges and for-profit institutions. The University of Phoenix had lost half of its students between 2010 and 2015, a whopping 250,000! The Council of Ontario Universities reported declines of about 5% in applicants province-wide over 2 years – and more remote institutions like the University of Windsor or Lakehead saw drops of up to 19%. The Maritime Provinces Higher Education Commission reported a 1% decline in enrolment after 4 consecutive years of growth, and smaller campuses in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick were particularly hard hit.

Check out Ken’s white paper, Peak Campus, for more detail:
http://eduvation.ca/2013/09/peak-campus/


Next time we’ll round up the top higher ed headaches of 2015. For exclusive preview access, a week early, to future episodes of "Ten with Ken", be sure to subscribe to Eduvation's "in the loop" email newsletter, at http://www.eduvation.ca/subscribe/

Jan 27, 2016

2015 was a rough year, from terrorist attacks in France and extreme weather in Texas and California, to the Volkswagen emissions scandal and the surprising rise of Donald Trump. But we also saw the launch of the Apple Watch, the Lexus hoverboard, and Nike self-lacing shoes. And there was a profound leftward shift in Canadian politics, from Rachel Notley’s NDP in Alberta to Dwight Ball’s Liberals in Newfoundland, and of course the second prime minister Trudeau. But there was also no shortage of developments directly affecting higher education. Some we have covered in previous episodes of this podcast, and others will deserve more attention soon. Here are Ken’s picks for the top ten.

10) Gender Equity:

From pay equity settlements and campaigns to encourage female enrolment in Engineering, to sexism in social media, and in nominations for the Science and Engineering Hall of Fame, gender can’t be ignored when we look back at 2015. Dedicated episode on Gender Equity

9) Open Textbooks:

Electronic textbooks are being explored, particularly at Olds and Algonquin colleges, but last year we saw real momentum building for open texts – free, online, peer-reviewed textbooks. California, BC, and Manitoba have committed funding to so-called “Textbook Zero” programs, which can reduce student attrition by 10%. And the US Congress is again considering the Affordable College Textbook Act, to encourage the development and adoption of open text alternatives. Dedicated episode on e-Texts and Open Texts

8) Contingent Faculty:

Last year the “new faculty majority,” untenured part-time sessional instructors, joined fast-food workers on the picket line in the US to fight for a $15 minimum wage. While the situation in Canada is somewhat better, striking sessionals at York University still made national headlines. Dedicated episode on Adjunct & Contingent Faculty

7) Drones:

Consumer drones hit the mainstream last year, about 4.3 million of them worldwide. They’re being used to patrol college entrance exams in China, and have entered the curriculum for programs in journalism, video, agriculture and firefighting, among others. But drones really took over last year in PSE marketing departments, with everybody featuring aerial footage in their videos.

6) Academic Journals:

A study published last year found that as much as 70% of scholarly output in some disciplines is in the hands of just 5 multinational publishing companies, and since publication determines tenure, promotion, research grants and university rankings, these corporations are the de facto “power brokers” of higher ed. They are posting better profit margins than Apple, and institutions from McGill to Harvard are finding they can no longer afford to subscribe to scholarly journals. Last year we saw editors and editorial boards quit in protest over pay-to-play peer review, extortionate subscription rates, and extensive peer review fraud.

5) Double-Dipping:

Last year there was also a groundswell of protest against generous executive pensions and administrative leave, allowing university presidents in particular to “double-dip” and get paid double their salary, or their salary in addition to pension in retirement. Western University president Amit Chakma took the brunt of the outrage, but other cases included Michael Goldbloom at Bishop’s, Arvind Gupta at UBC, Heather Munroe-Blum at McGill, Tom Traves at Dalhousie, and Sean Riley at StFX. When a scarcity mentality sets in, people start looking for scapegoats, and presidents are tempting targets.

Next time, we’ll finish this countdown with the 4 biggest trends affecting higher ed last year, from political correctness to major demographic shifts. (Subscribeto get access to future episodes a full week in advance!)

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