The School of Nursing has been involved in improving the quality of nursing education in Vietnam for the past four years, and a recent joint project with the School of Social Work is targeting the area of social services and health. Dr. Elizabeth Dow, Social Work, and Dr. Lan Gien, Nursing, joined forces to better the quality of life in rural Vietnam by improving social services for women, children, the elderly and disabled people. Dr. Ken Barter and Sharon Taylor of the School of Social Work also participated. The five-year project received a grant of $749,000 from the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), administered by the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC). Under the CIDA-funded project, Drs. Dow and Gien will facilitate how social work is taught and implemented in Vietnam. Using a community development approach, social work curriculum that is culturally-sensitive and relevant will be developed with the College of Labour and Social Affairs.
With the help of resources at Memorial University, MaterCare International developed a CD-ROM to familiarize health care professionals with the surgical and nursing care of women with obstetric fistula. This condition usually occurs in very young mothers, aged between 14 and 20 years, because of obstructed labour and cultural practices such as female circumcision. Obstetrician Dr. Bob Walley, Faculty of Medicine, has been championing the cause of these women for many years. He founded MaterCare International (www.matercare.org) and has now helped develop a CD-ROM that offers an introduction to the surgery and nursing management of obstetric fistulae.
On July 1, the Beaumont Hamel Visitor Centre in France was officially opened. The ceremonies were transmitted live to Canada from France via satellite, made possible through partnerships with the School of Continuing Education, TETRA Telemedicine, the Communication Research Centre of Industry Canada, and with support from the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador. The Media Production Unit of the School of Continuing Education provided the on-site broadcast of the event through the organization of the pre-edited tape feeds for satellite transmission to the local NTV and CBC television stations. To view a portion of this event, click here. To read more about Beaumont Hamel click here.
Gerry Porter and Albert Johnson of Memorial's School of Continuing Education traveled to Kampala, Uganda, in July to participate in the CurriculumNet Project, a joint venture with the National Curriculum Development Centre of the Ugandan Ministry of Education and Sports, the International Development Research Counsel, the Open Learning and Information Network, and the School of Continuing Education. During their three-week visit they provided workshops and advice for over 40 Ugandan educators on integrating technology into their curriculum. The training continued in St. John's in the fall for two of the project staff.
The third annual German Field School in Heidelberg, Germany, attracted the largest group from the Department of German and Russian yet, with 22 students participating. The program began with 10 weeks of Web-based instruction, followed by four weeks of intensive language practice at the Heidelberg Language Institute.
The program Drama and Performance, was again offered by the Faculty of Arts in summer 2001 at Memorial's Harlow campus in the United Kingdom. Following six weeks of intensive classroom instruction in St. John's, the program, under the direction of English Department faculty Dr. Peter Ayers and Dr. Denyse Lynde, moved to Harlow, where students studied and saw 12 plays. Highlights were trips to Stratford-upon-Avon, with a sojourn at the local youth hostel, two pub theatre performances and an evening at the Globe Theatre.
In August 2001, the Department of Geography conducted a field school in Northwest Portugal, based at the University of Aveiro. Drs. Chesley Sanger and Gordon Handcock supervised 11 students in the field school, which focused on the historical associations between northwest Portugal and Newfoundland through centuries of involvement in the fish and the port wine trades and the similarities in the social and economic development experienced by both during the period of modernization. They also considered topics and locations that related to regional planning, coastal zone management, tourism, built environments, cultural landscapes and economic development. Through presentations, excursions and direct interaction, the students were able to explore this vibrant culture and acquire a broad-based understanding of Aviero and its environs in particular and Northwestern Portugal in general. The field school was undertaken in conjunction with the International Centre at Memorial and the University of Aveiro, in accordance with a 1998 memorandum of understanding for exchanges.
The Canada-European Exchange on the Politics of Multilevel Systems of Governance sent one Memorial student to the Netherlands and one to Ireland, and a student from Uppsala University spent two semesters at Memorial. The program will continue in 2002 when three Memorial students will go to the Netherlands and one to Ireland.
The Faculty of Arts, in partnership with the College of the North Atlantic, implemented 21 placements under the 2000-2001 International Internship Program. Twelve university graduates and nine college graduates were placed with companies, institutions, and non-governmental organizations in Austria, China, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, South Africa, and Switzerland, as well as with internationally-focused organizations in Canada. Interns were involved in work ranging from public relations and promotions, to wildlife management research and project management, to business liaison, to environmental education, to assisting in international trade promotion. These internships provided recent graduates with valuable professional and personal experiences with an international flavour. This was the third consecutive year in which the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade sponsored the Faculty of Arts under the program. Funding has also been provided for another 15 internships during 2001-2002.
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During the week of Sept. 25, 2000, the Distinguished Speaker Series got underway with a series of talks from Dr. Wilf Nicholls, director of The MUN Botanical Garden. Dr. Axel Meisen, Memorial's president, was on hand to officially introduce the series, which included stops in Stephenville and Corner Brook. The Distinguished Speaker series is a new initiative of the Alumni Association, designed to provide alumni and friends of Memorial with the opportunity to hear presentations from prominent figures in various fields of interest. Future installments of the series will feature a range of scholars, writers, researchers and other notable experts.
Memorial's men's basketball Sea-Hawks embarked on their community outreach program, playing inter-squad games at St. Catherine's, Ont., and Trepassey, NF. The team invited children from each community to come out and shoot a round with the Sea-Hawks players prior to each game, conducted a players' clinic, and attended high school games in advance of their tip-off time.
A new tool designed for students interested in exploring the health professions as a career was launched in October 2000, and its chief financial backer was very pleased with the result. The International Grenfell Association (IGA) donated $48,900 in seed money for the interactive CD-ROM Exploring Health Careers, which was developed by the Office of Professional Development in Memorial's Faculty of Medicine. Two copies of the CD-ROM have been placed in every high school in the province, and a copy was sent to all high schools and universities in Atlantic Canada.
The Genesis Group, the newly consolidated organization responsible for all aspects of technology commercialization and development for Memorial University, was launched on Nov. 29, 2000. Formerly known as Seabright Corporation, the group has four divisions: Genesis Research, which carries out intellectual property protection and promotion; Genesis Centre, a support network for high-growth, knowledge-based businesses; Genesis Web, an on-line support network for entrepreneurs, and Genesis Bio-East, the collaborative network for biotechnology in the province.
A Genesis Centre graduate, Garrison (Griffiths) Guitars International, raised $1.5 million in equity and opened a $4-million plant, having pre-sold its first year of production. Sixty-five people are employed, and that number will increase to 100 within a year when full capacity is achieved.
In June another Genesis Group graduate, BioHex Inc., raised half a million dollars in private sector equity to proceed with commercialization of its patented dental implant, which is placed using only one surgery versus two, saving the patient discomfort and expense. BioHex has reached agreement with the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey to train dentists in the use of its implants. The company proposes to establish a "clean room" manufacturing facility in the province early in 2002.
Rutter Technologies Inc., another Genesis Centre graduate, acquired significant private financing from Newfoundland-based, ConPro Group Ltd., which will provide Rutter with the necessary capital to capture the international market for voyage data recorders (VDRs), marine equivalent of the aircraft black box. This technology was developed with the assistance of the Canadian Centre for Marine Communications.
Memorial became a computing technology and library services resource for Conception Bay students. The unique educational partnership program will be piloted at Ascension Collegiate in Bay Roberts. A formal agreement for a one-year pilot program was signed in March. As in all partnerships, both parties expect to see benefits from the agreement. "At Ascension Collegiate we are always seeking ways to ensure that our students are provided with the very best educational experiences," said principal Hayward C. Blake at a ceremony marking the partnership. "I believe that this partnership with Memorial University will expand our capacity to offer students quality learning opportunities and will better prepare them for post-secondary studies."
A community-based project in computers and adult literacy combined faculty research, employment for Memorial students, and community service in ways that are rewarding for all concerned. The project, directed by Drs. Roberta Hammett and Barrie Barrell, Education, and Dr. Phyllis Artiss, English, is funded by a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Strategic Literacy Grant and by smaller grants from other sources, including MUCEP, SCP and SWASP. Since January, they have offered their program in literacy and computers in two BFC sites: one on New Pennywell Road and the other in Holy Cross Elementary School on St. Clare Avenue in St. John's. These centres provide the site, community contacts, and child care (when possible) for participants, as well as invaluable administrative and other support, while Memorial provides computers and related technology, and tutoring by Memorial students (in one-on-one sessions, in small groups and in organized workshops) to interested adults. About 60 participants enrolled in the project.
Dr. Janet Fitzpatrick, Social Work, and clinical lecturer/psychotherapist Gerry Mugford, Medicine, were selected last year for two of the five prestigious HIV Scholars-in-Residence awards, given by the Association of Canadian Medical Colleges with funding from Health Canada. The project involves curriculum development for areas of the province outside St. John's to help treat persons with HIV/AIDS.
Fifteen students from the Russian section of the Department of German and Russian participated in the annual Summer Russian Program in Pushkin (Tsarskoe Selo) and St. Petersburg. From their living quarters at the University of Moscow, the students did regular summer courses in language, literature and culture and enjoyed special excursions to the many museums, galleries and historical sites in St. Petersburg and side-trips to Moscow, the ancient city of Novgorod and islands of Valaam in Lake Ladoga. In Pushkin the students lived with Russian families, who are carefully selected according to the level of language ability and the interests of the student.