Wednesday, May 13th, 2009
Canadian Immigration tires of defense, goes on offence
French unis collaborate to attract international nuclear students
“Remarkable” leap in enrollment in Australia
Beat the heat
1) LET’S GO CANADA – Canadian Immigration tires of defense, goes on offence
Canada’s Immigration officers, usually on the defense when it comes to battling visa fraud, are now getting pro-active.
The Department of Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) is conducting a survey of the public to gather information about dealings with immigration consultants in all the areas of permits to enter Canada: permanent residents, temporary workers, students, etc.
The survey, available on the homepage of the CIC website (http://www.cic.gc.ca/) for the next two weeks, is part of a campaign to inform the public on how to protect themselves against false claims from dishonest consultants or unethical representatives.
“I’ve heard a lot of unsettling stories of how people have been taken in by dishonest immigration consultants or unethical representatives,” said Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism.
The survey may well have policy implications for the way in which some Canadian educational institutions conduct business abroad. These are the dozens of institutions, public and private, colleges and universities, engaging in business with overseas education agencies. As some institutions move into the fray they are discovering significant elements of unscrupulousness of all kinds from poor counselling to outright misrepresentations to document fraud. Some of this is due to a lack of on-the-ground diligence, and some of it may be due to wilful blindness.
“One of the most prominent Visa Managers for Canada once told me how he caught an agent preparing false documents and reported it to the Canadian institution he was working for,” says Higher-Edge Managing Director in Asia, Mel Broitman. “The institution then told the Visa Manager to stop harassing its agent,” added Mr. Broitman, who says that typically Visa Officers abroad do not get institutional co-operation in tackling fraud head-on. The CIC survey may provide the department with more evidence to apply more pressure at the sources of the problem.
Source: “http://axcessnews.com/index.php/articles/show?id=17956,” Axcess News, 11 May 2009.
2) ABROAD PERSPECTIVE – French unis collaborate to attract international nuclear students
Though France is hardly a major contender in the arena of international student recruitment, the country may be creating a model that bigger players should be learning from.
France’s nuclear industry has identified a skills gap in the field of nuclear energy. It predicts that 1000 new trained professionals will be needed per year for the next decade.
In order to fill that skills gap, some of Paris’s leading universities—Université Paris Sud 11, six schools from ParisTech, Supélec, École Centrale and CEA’s INSTN—and a number of major nuclear energy companies are coming together to offer a two-year masters program in nuclear energy.
Set to begin in September 2009, the program will educate in English 200 students per course year, of which roughly 100 will be international students.
Though in the grand scheme of things 100 students may not seem like a lot, what stands out is the willingness to collaborate between universities and companies to fill a particular knowledge and skills gap. As the competition for international students heats up, it will become increasingly important, particularly for smaller players, to find niche markets that can be tapped and nurtured.
Bigger players would not do themselves any harm by taking page from France’s play book either.
Source: “http://www.dnaindia.com/academy/report_french-nuclear-energy-degree-for-indian-grads_1251563,” DNA India, 29 April 2009.
France’s Master Nuclear Energy Website:
3) OVER THE COUNTER – “Remarkable” leap in enrollment in Australia
Despite earlier predictions, universities and vocational colleges in Australia are showing record increases in international enrollment. Numbers in the key March enrollment period are showing an annual growth of 20.8 percent.
China and India played a huge role in the increase, with Chinese students jumping by 19.6 percent and Indian students by 40 percent.
Australian universities have lost approximately AUS $800 million in investment income since the markets crashed last September. While leaders from the country’s institutions are heartened by the growth, they worry that the increase in enrollments will give the Australian government an excuse not to allot the AUS $9.7 billion to university renewal scheduled for the upcoming budget.
Universities Australia Chief Executive Glenn Withers says that international students are beginning to adjust to studying in a cash-strapped environment. He warns, though, that to fail to invest properly in Australian institutions may eventually dissuade students from coming.
He cites the quality of an Australian education as the main draw for international students, but that quality must be funded. “If they defer the investment now they run the risk of killing the goose that has laid the golden egg.”
Source: “http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/nation/overseas-students-defy-downturn/story-e6frg6nf-1225710433256” The Australian, 7 May 2009.
4) GLOBE TIPPING – Beat the heat
While it may only be spring in North America, destinations in source places like India and the Middle East are already hot and only getting hotter.
Stay cool and healthy when traveling through hotter climes by following these steps:
• don’t over-exert yourself
• drink at least one cup (250 ml) of water per hour
• wear loose, light-coloured clothing and a hat when outdoors
• use fans and air conditioning where possible
• if you do not have access to air conditioning where you are staying, visit air coniditioned public places like libraries or malls to cool down.
Heat exhaustion and stroke can have serious effects. For more information on symptoms and prevention, visit Quality Health’s page at: