Juggling finances vital for entrepreneurial success

For owners of small- or medium-sized businesses, dealing with personal financial management is crucial, and it is important to avoid common trouble spots, reported the Toronto Star Oct. 19 in a special section on personal finance for small business. Many people use their own cash to finance the start-up or expansion of a smaller business, but experts warn against putting in too much. “The more of your own personal money that goes in, the more liable you are financially,” said Eileen Fischer, director of entrepreneurial studies at York’s Schulich School of Business.

Working with investors might increase your chance of success, she said. “Statistics show that businesses that are leveraging the money of others tend to go further,” Fischer said.”If you are limiting yourself to your own pool of financial resources, it tends to constrain how big you start,” she said. “How big you start has an influence on how big you grow.” And “the fact somebody is willing to put money in your business is a signal to others that it’s worth considering,” Fischer said.

Saddam trial a landmark, says York expert

Saddam Hussein’s trial on war crimes charges was adjourned for more than a month, shortly after it began, reported CTV Newsnet Oct. 19. The 68-year-old former Iraqi leader pleaded not guilty in a tightly secured Baghdad courtroom where he’s on trial for crimes against humanity. Iraq expert Thabit Abdullah Sam, a history professor in York’s Faculty of Arts, described the trial as a landmark event for Iraqis. He said never under Hussein’s dictatorship were Iraqis afforded a fair and open trial. A judge, under Saddam’s rule, “was more of a prosecutor shaming the defendents before haphazardly passing a sentence, which was often very harsh,” Adbullah told CTV Newsnet.

Scarborough argues for new subway extension

Scarborough city councillors want a subway to the heart of their former city, and they think it should be built before an extension of the Spadina subway north to York University, reported the Toronto Star Oct. 19. The issue is coming to a head because the Toronto Transit Commission says the cars now running on the Scarborough Rapid Transit line will be worn out by 2015 and must be replaced with a subway, streetcars or buses. The line carries close to 43,000 people a day, and is under such strain at rush hour that some TTC surface routes now divert passengers away from it. The SRT carries more than twice as many people as now travel to York University by TTC buses, although the TTC estimates that 50,000 people a day would use a York University subway line, reported the Star.

Turn bilingualism into a career

In a country characterized by official bilingualism and a diverse multicultural population, the opportunities to work as a translator or interpreter abound, reported The Toronto Sun Oct. 19. Currently, individuals considering entering these professions have two training options: The University of Ottawa and Glendon College, York’s bilingual liberal arts school, which offers its own French-English translation degree program.