UBC Reports | Vol.
50 | No. 11 |
Dec. 2, 2004
In the News
Highlights of UBC Media Coverage in November 2004
Compiled by Brian Lin
The World Comes to Canada to Learn
The number of Americans studying at Canadian universities
jumped 29 per cent last year, contributing to a staggering
145 per cent increase since 1997/98, according to a survey
conducted by the Canadian Embassy in Washington, D.C.
UBC saw a 28 per cent jump in American undergraduates this
fall, to 420 students, reports CanWest News Service. That’s
a 166 per cent increase since 2001 and a 303 per cent jump
in five years.
Canada is also one of the most popular destinations for
British students seeking education abroad. UBC currently has
72 Brits on Master or PhD programs, including fisheries PhD
student Louisa Wood, from Cheshire.
Wood told The Independent that her UBC experience has underlined
the virtues of moving outside the UK. “I believe that
successfully graduating from different educational systems
greatly enhances employability, research skills and academic
networking,” she said.
Just Say No
There has been a backlash against the cost, risk and side
effects of medication. UBC pharmacologist James Wright warns
against the over-dependence on prescription drugs.
“We have this idea that we can pop a pill and solve
everything. It is craziness,” Wright told Forbes.com.
“People are dying from taking too many drugs at too
high doses for mild conditions where they have little chance
Wright also raised concerns over Statins, a top-selling
drug sold under names such as Lipitor and Zocor, saying its
side effects have not received adequate scrutiny.
“The enzyme these drugs block is critical for lots
of activities in the body,” Wright told BusinessWeek.
“So to think that it is going to be all for the good
is very naïve.”
To Touch a Coelacanth
UBC fisheries scientist Scott McKinley will come face to
face with some real live dinosaurs next spring when he boards
a Canadian-built submarine shaped like a bubble, 200 metres
below the surface of the Indian Ocean.
McKinley, who leads the first-ever scientific venture to
track the elusive coelacanth, an ancient fish that’s
been swimming in the deep, dark waters off the African coast
for about 400 million years, unveiled his plans last month
at the Vancouver Aquarium.
“I wish I could touch one,” McKinley told The
Globe and Mail. The five-year research project is estimated
to cost $5 million.
VP Research in a Class by Herself
UBC VP Research Indira Samarasekera has been chosen to be
President of the University of Alberta.
In a Globe and Mail profile, UBC President Martha Piper
was quoted saying that Samarasekera “has had ‘president’
written all over her for some time.”
UBC microbiologist Brett Finlay was shocked back in 2000
when Samarasekera took the job as VP Research. “Everybody
wondered why the hell she took an administrative job as vice
president when she was such a good researcher,” Finlay
told The Globe and Mail. “She’s a superstar in
the engineering world.”
Directors Education Program launched
UBC’s Sauder School of Business joined forces with
SFU Business School and the University of Toronto’s
Rotman School of Management last month in launching the first
Directors Education Program (DEP) in the province.
The program is designed to give people who have completed
the Executive MBA program an additional boost, reports Ming
Pao Daily. Originally established last November at the Rotman
School of Business in partnership with ICD Corporate Governance
College, the program offers important resources for regulators,
investors, directors and government officials.