Diversity is a York strength, says fundraiser Marcus

Paul Marcus, president and CEO of the York University Foundation, says York’s diversity is a key advantage in his work, reported Canadian FundRaiser eNews May 15. “York is a fantastic product to sell,” Marcus said. “Its strength is so much in its diversity.” About half of York’s students are the first in their family to graduate from postsecondary education, he noted. Marcus cited three recent major gifts as symbolizing the ongoing spillover from the “product” to its recognition and appreciation by diverse communities: African Canadians established an award fund for students from that community entering York, in memory of Randal Dooley, a Jamaican boy who died from parental abuse; The Mark and Gail Appel Program in Holocaust and Anti-Racism Education was established with an initial gift of $330,000; and a permanent Chair and program in modern Hellenic studies was established with the support of the Hellenic Heritage Foundation of Toronto. “The fact is that it is important at York that all communities feel at home,” said Marcus. “And if they do, they will also support the institution philanthropically when they graduate.”

Smaller businesses need better e-help, says Schulich’s McClean

The Canadian E-business Initiative (CeBi) delivered a mixed message in its latest assessment of the nation’s digital economy, noted the Globe and Mail May 21. Ron McClean, professor of management science and director of Academic Computing & Technologies at York’s Schulich School of Business, as well as deputy leader of CeBi’s benchmarking and metrics team, said it was significant that Canadian companies were at the top of the class in finding digital ways of cutting costs, because it provided solid evidence of how e-business solutions can benefit the bottom line. But he noted that technology vendors do not find smaller companies as lucrative a market as large corporations. “Small and medium-sized businesses are asking for a toolkit that is less intrusive, easier to implement and perhaps more integrated than a large firm might want to look at,” he said. “And they’re not finding it.”

National Post writer takes on Alan Young

A quote from Osgoode Hall Law School Professor Alan Young (noted in YFile May 20 from the Globe and Mail) raised the ire of National Post columnist Ian Hunter, who opposes the decriminalization of marijuana use. Wrote Hunter May 21: “Typically, there appears to be greater concern here about police discretion in enforcement than there is about the desirability of decriminalizing; for example, Professor Alan Young of (where else?) York University’s Osgoode Hall warns: ‘History tells us that the disadvantaged and minorities will disproportionately suffer under a regime of that nature.’ How reassuring is the authentic voice of Canadian concern! Prof. Young is reminiscent (although he may hardly consider this a compliment) of the House of Commons Finance Committee, whose recent report tentatively endorsed bank mergers but not without collective hand-wringing about whether a merged bank ‘would pay sufficient attention to ensuring access for disabled Canadians’.”

On air:

  • Paul Delaney, senior lecturer in the Department of Physics & Astronomy, Faculty of Pure & Applied Science, talked with CFRB’s Connie Sinclair on May 15 about the pending lunar eclipse.
  • The Innocence Project, which involves Osgoode Hall Law School students and Osgoode Professor Dianne Martin, got wide coverage for its challenge of the 30-year-old murder conviction of Romeo Phillion. Outlets included CBC TV’s “The National,” CBC Radio’s “The Current,” “Metro Morning” and news programs, CJOH-TV Ottawa’s “Newsline” and CBFLT-TV Toronto’s “Ce Soir.”