UBC Reports | Vol. 49 | No. 9 | Sep.
IN THE NEWS
Highlights of UBC Media Coverage in August 2003
Compiled by Brian Lin
Tuition Keeps Rising
A recently released Statistics Canada report shows undergraduate
students will pay on average 7.4 per cent more in tuition
fees, the biggest increase in four years. This year, the cost
of tuition in B.C. will rise 30 per cent on the heels of a
similar increase last year.
UBC Vice-President Brian Sullivan told The Globe and Mail
that schools in the province have just been playing a game
of catch-up to the rest of the country in order to provide
increased capacity and quality education to its students.
While acknowledging that paying these extra fees has been
challenging for students, Sullivan said the university has
made available more financial assistance and tried to expand
employment opportunities on campus.
UBC law and sociology professor Richard Ericson told the
San Francisco Chronicle that many of the new security guards
are being hired to do what public police used to do,
public-order policing on the street itself.
Although theyre only making citizens arrests,
they are indeed making the arrests. They may give people their
rights in turning them over to police, and because they made
the observation, they actually write out reports for prosecutors.
The public police only come in after the fact to detain or
release the people officially and then process them further
Last year, California licensed 15,450 new security officers,
for a total of 185,000. Of that number, an estimated 14,000
are licensed to carry guns.
Caution on New Drug
Commenting on Seasonale, a new drug designed to reduce the
number of menstrual cycles a woman undergoes from 13 a year
to four, UBC endocrinology researcher Christine Hitchcock
told The Economist that there isnt enough research to
show the long-term effects of the extended use of oral contraceptives
on the breast.
Hitchcock is alarmed that some people talk about Seasonale
in the same way they might talk about taking a daily vitamin
Animal Welfare Leap
UBC animal behaviour and welfare professor David Fraser told
USA Today that the period from 1999 to 2002 was a watershed
in animal welfare worldwide.
Over the past five years, the push for more humane care is
coming from companies with the economic clout to make producers
sit up and take notice -- supermarkets and fast food restaurants,
including the worlds most famous purveyor of beef, McDonalds.
It was as if a crucial mass had been reached and animal
welfare and assurance programs became the thing to do,
Women Run Business Like Men
UBC organizational behaviour professor Nancy Langton told
the National Post that there is no evidence women run businesses
any differently than men do.
Since 1995, Langton and her colleagues have tracked the owners
of 229 small businesses in Vancouver, 141 of which were owned
by men and 88 owned by women.
Women are saying theyre using a more collaborative
style, said Langton. They make it seem like its
run in a more female way, but men and women are doing it the
Langton said the results should reassure banks that might
be hesitant to lend money to women, or companies that might
waver in choosing a woman for a top managerial role.
Forest Fire Dissected
UBC forest sciences professor Michael Feller told the Vancouver
Sun that a forest fire, at its ferocious worst, can reach
temperatures as high as 800 degrees Celsius and feed voraciously
on fuel, oxygen and heat.
A forest fire needs heat, wind and an unstable atmosphere
to get going, exactly the conditions currently present in
much of southern B.C., said Feller.
Despite the terror they cause in people, fires are not only
natural to B.C.s forest, theyre essential for
the survival of many of its species. Whenever theres
a fire close to houses and cities, theres a lot of hype
and media coverage. But when you look at the figures and compare
them to historical figures, we havent had a particularly
heavy fire season.