Body approves longer engineering diploma and first-year Indigenous program
On Tuesday, Mar. 7, the Capilano University Senate met to discuss the approval of two new programs, among other business. The Senate is the joint-highest decision making body at the institution and is responsible for matters concerning student evaluation, curriculum content and all other issues related to academics. At this meeting, the Senate voted to approve two new programs: a longer, more specialized and pre-requisite encompassing Engineering Diploma, and University One for Aboriginal learners.
The Engineering Diploma, administered through the School of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, will feature 71 credits meant to be completed over two-years. The courses include a variety of pre-requisites, classes that are already in the existing Engineering Transitions year-and-a-half program, and additional subjects meant to make graduates both “job-ready”, and prepared to transfer elsewhere. According to the administration, one of the key rationales for introducing a second engineering program is industry growth. The Senate’s description of the program states that jobs across STEM are growing by 1.3 per cent annually, trailing only health.
According to engineering convenor, Bruno Tomberli, this brand-new diploma program would provide applicants with three engineering options at CapU. Currently, CapU only administers the Engineering Transitions program and a highly competitive two semester Engineering Certificate, with courses that transfer “one-to-one” to UBC for second-year. Faculty representative Caroline Depatie asked Tomberli whether this program would consist of a new cohort, or shift students from existing programs into the new diploma. Tomberli clarified that the new diploma would not add 35 new students, but “encourage exist students to push themselves a little more in preparation for a four-year engineering degree.” The program was approved in principle by the Senate.
As for the University One for Aboriginal learners, the program will replace what the university has already been doing for sometime. This program, is said to support the lifelong learning of aboriginal leaners, a commitment to CapU’s Aboriginal Student Success Strategy and the “Calls to Action” report, published by the Truth and Reconciliation report, both published in 2015. This program, exclusively for first-year students, will feature a number of core courses that would allow learners to transfer into several degree and diploma options in their next years.
Courses will range from introductory English and mathematics, to classes concerned with indigenous issues, politics, history, storytelling and traditional ways of knowing. Dr. Brad Martin, the Dean for the Faculty of Education, Health and Human Development, of which University One would fall under, was on hand to present the program to the Senate. Faculty Senate representative and [centre] David Kirk, also spoke to the merits of the program and the unique needs it would address, citing it would help students who aren’t always completely ready for post-secondary ease into their studies. CapU Vice President of Academic and Provost, Rick Gale, also added that this program would better help the university support and retain aboriginal students. The program was approved in principle by the Senate.
Other business that was discussed included plans to send out nominations for student elections to the Board of Governors and Senate for 2017-18. CapU Registrar, Karen McCredie noted that terms for student representatives on both decision-making bodies are Aug. 1, 2017 to Jul. 31, 2018.
Notably present at the meeting were newly elected student representatives Imroz Ali, who is pursuing a Legal Studies degree, and Erik Steel, who is in the Liberal Studies program. Kim Bothen was also at the meeting, and is a Costuming for Stage and Screen instructor with the School of Motion Picture arts who was recently elected in a faculty by-election.
The next senate meeting will take place on Apr. 4.
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