OCUFA Report

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In this issue…

You’re invited to Worldviews 2019: An unconventional convention

First OCUFA Fellowship in Higher Education Journalism awarded to Nicholas Hune-Brown

McMaster University Faculty Association makes significant gains in faculty benefits in latest agreement

New articles from Academic Matters



You’re invited to Worldviews 2019: An unconventional convention

This June, join participants from around the globe for the 2019 Worldviews on Media and Higher Education Conference in Toronto, Canada.

Register for Worldviews 2019: Democracy at risk? Reflecting on the future of higher education and media in a post-truth world.

Taking place June 12-14, the three-day conference will focus on democracy and the changing power relations of higher education and the media in the global north and south – specifically examining the concept of expertise in a “post-truth” world and the types of voices amplified by emerging technologies.



Watch the conference teaser video and learn more.

The conference will bring together a diverse group of academics, students, higher education leaders, communications professionals, and journalists with a wide range of experiences, insights, and opinions.

Through a series of keynote talks, panel discussions, interviews, and interactive exhibits, conference participants will focus on the challenges and opportunities presented by the democratization of higher education and the media, engage in an ongoing and lively exchange of ideas, and explore innovative possibilities for partnerships.

Register today to qualify for a special early bird rate.

Learn more about the conference sessions and speakers by visiting the Worldviews website or downloading the conference application for your phone and using the code wv2019.



First OCUFA Fellowship in Higher Education Journalism awarded to Nicholas Hune-Brown

Nicholas Hune-Brown has been awarded the inaugural OCUFA Fellowship in Higher Education Journalism. Hune-Brown is a Toronto-based magazine writer whose work has appeared in Toronto Life, Slate, The Walrus, The Guardian, and other publications. He is the winner of multiple National Magazine Awards and is the features editor of The Local.

The Fellowship was established to help address the shortage of informed investigative reporting on Canadian higher education issues in the Canadian media. Open to full-time, part-time, and freelance journalists, including students, the fellowship is designed to support those wishing to pursue in-depth and innovative journalism on higher education.

A year-long Fellowship, Hune-Brown will spend the next several months engaged in research and is expected to have his work published by early 2020.



McMaster University Faculty Association makes significant gains in faculty benefits in latest agreement

The McMaster University Faculty Association (MUFA) has ratified a three-year agreement with their university administration. Significant achievements include extensive improvements to benefits in areas such as mental health, hearing aids, and medical device coverage. MUFA also successfully negotiated increases to its professional development allowance and dependant tuition bursary program. Among other improvements, the association achieved across-the-board salary increases comparable to other faculty associations.



New articles from Academic Matters

There is more to Academic Matters than just the print issue. New articles are being added to the Academic Matters website every week. Here are some recent articles you might find interesting:

Healthy research ecosystem – healthy researchers? The researcher as an organism of focus within a ‘research ecosystem’
By Michelle L.A. Nelson and Ross Upshur
“The academic research environment is changing and researchers report struggling to adapt in order to be successful. Funding shortfalls are perennial, but what systemic shifts should occur to enable researchers at all career stages to be productive and successful?”

Université de l’Ontario français: a 21st-century university
By Marc L. Johnson, Francophone Hub of Knowledge and Innovation
“Ontario’s French community has been asking for a university governed by and for Francophones. Even without the support of the Ontario government, could the modern curriculum proposed for the Université de l’Ontario français provide a way forward?”

University of California’s break with the biggest academic publisher could shake up scholarly publishing for good
By MacKenzie Smith, University of California, Davis
“The University of California recently made international headlines when it canceled its subscription with scientific journal publisher Elsevier. The twittersphere lit up. And Elsevier’s parent company, RELX, saw its stock drop 7 percent in response to the announcement. A library canceling a subscription seems …”


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Citizen science can help solve our data crisis
By Tarun Katapally, University of Regina
“A recent news article in the Globe and Mail highlighted Canada’s data crisis and identified at least 28 critical gaps. These gaps intersect multiple sectors, ranging from health and education to environment, justice and Indigenous issues — a dearth that leaves researchers and policy makers …”

Subsidized privilege: The real scandal of American universities
By Neil McLaughlin, McMaster University
“U.S. federal prosecutors have charged 50 people — 38 of them are parents — for allegedly being involved in fraud schemes to secure spots at Yale, Stanford and other big-name schools. Prosecutors accused some parents of paying millions of dollars in bribes to get their …”

Unrealistic striving for academic excellence has a cost
By Tanya Chichekian, Université de Sherbrooke
“In my past experience as an academic adviser, it was difficult to explain to a disappointed family why their child did not make an admissions cut-off when the student’s overall high school average was over 80 per cent. I also accompanied students who …”

Universities: increasingly stressful environments taking psychological toll – here’s what needs to change
By Luca Morini, Coventry University
“Every year, millions of international students travel to different countries to study at university. This, together with a lack of public funding for universities, has created an increasingly competitive market in which universities work directly against each other to chase students and the money they …”



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