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(February 24, 2000, Gazette)

Calling for restored transfers

The Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada supported the unanimous request by provincial premiers and territorial leaders to Prime Minister Jean Chrétien that the federal government fully restore funding for health and social programs through the Canada Health and Social Transfer.

“It’s important that the premiers and the federal government remember that postsecondary education is an integral component of the CHST,” said Robert J. Giroux, president of AUCC. “Increased transfers are essential investments in the health and vitality of Canada’s universities and colleges and in the quality of life of Canadians.”

At their annual conference in August, the premiers had called for “full restoration of CHST to fund social programs, particularly postsecondary education” as part of their “balanced approach.”

In the course of that news conference, Premier Mike Harris of Ontario noted that significant growth in postsecondary education will contribute to the increasing cost pressures faced by provinces.

“We estimate that full-time enrolment in Canada’s universities will increase by at least 20 per cent over the next 10 years,” said Mr. Giroux. By restoring the transfers and building in an escalator as called for by the premiers, the federal government will be doing its part to ensure that Canada has a well-educated and healthy population into the future, he said.

At Grenfell, the doctor is in

Sir Wilfred Grenfell College’s Student Affairs Department has announced the operation of a part-time medical clinic at the college.

Dr. Murray Brown, a former Grenfell student, will hold walk-in clinics each Thursday, 9 a.m. to noon, in the Wellness Centre (AS110). It is not necessary to make appointments; clients will be seen on a first-come, first-served basis.

“Many students, particularly those from outside Corner Brook, have difficulty getting to see a doctor when ill or regarding a medical condition,” said Mary Sparkes, co-ordinator of Student Affairs. “We hope that having a doctor on campus, even on a part-time basis, will help address this problem.”

This is not the first time this service has been offered, she says. During the college’s early years, a local doctor provided care on a part-time basis, but discontinued the clinic because the student body wasn’t large enough to support it.

Grenfell College has grown over the last 25 years, and today boasts a student population of about 1,200 students.

“Dr. Brown’s clinics will provide a health care option for students who either don’t have a family physician, or can’t book appointments that are convenient,” said Ms. Sparkes. “Rather than having to make a trip to Western Memorial Regional Hospital’s outpatients department for some minor ailment, these students will have the comfort of knowing there’s help right on campus.”

The nursing faculty will continue to provide services in the college’s Wellness Centre on Tuesday mornings, and will collaborate with Dr. Brown on a regular basis.

Desperately seeking drifters

About 2,500 wooden drift blocks were dropped into the ocean along the southern and eastern coasts of Newfoundland in mid-February as part of a research project carried out at Memorial, in cooperation with Environment Canada. The experiment is part of a project that will help determine the impacts of chronic oil pollution on seabirds.

The orange blocks are 4x4x5.5 inches in size and have a steel weight and a label attached to them which includes a serial number.

The public is asked to assist by recovering these blocks along the beaches. Rewards will be given for all accurate reports and recoveries.
Please call collect (709) 772-5585 or e-mail to tell researchers the number of the block and where and when you found it.

Reaching out to the community

Grenfell’s Applied Research Unit was the topic of a presentation made to the Humber Rotary Club in Corner Brook recently.

Dr. Don Downer, manager of the ARU, made the presentation to raise awareness of how the ARU can help local businesses and individuals. Dr. Downer explained that the ARU is the single point of contact for businesses, organizations and individuals who interested in accessing the expertise, services and resources of the college.

The purpose of the ARU is to support the economic, social and cultural development, renewal and growth of all sectors of western Newfoundland and Labrador, and to enhance the college’s ability to conduct research.

Businesses and community groups have access to resources such as Grenfell’s 79 faculty members, 28 disciplines and 120 support staff.
Grenfell offers state-of-the-art equipment, a wide array of modern facilities, modern computer and telecommunications equipment, a technology centre and the Aquatic Centre for Research and Education, just to name a few resources.