Schulich’s Hyderabad campus to open in 2013, notes Times of India

The city of pearls is all set to cement its position as a global knowledge hub with the Indian campus of top-notch Canadian B-school – Schulich School of Business of York University – set to open its doors in September 2013 near the Rajiv Gandhi International airport at Shamshabad, wrote The Times of India July 13.

The GMR group will be investing nearly Rs 100 crore [$21.5 million] in the campus, including a parcel of 25 acres of land and setting up the entire physical infrastructure, while the Toronto-based B-school will pump in around Canadian $5 million towards developing the academic infrastructure, faculty and research for the new campus.

While the agreement to set up the GMR campus of the Schulich School of Business was inked in Toronto last month, the ground-breaking ceremony was held here on Tuesday in the presence of Andhra Pradesh [state] Chief Minister Kiran Kumar Reddy.

Commenting on the occasion, GMR group chairman G.M. Rao said: "GMR will bring its world-class infrastructure development skills to the table while Schulich School of Business will bring its expertise as one of the world’s top-rated MBA and executive education providers.

"The campus in India will provide a high-quality option for business management education to the best of Indian and international students, given that the centre of gravity of the world economy has shifted significantly from the west to the east in recent years," Rao added.

The GMR campus will initially offer two-year MBA courses, going on to later offer executive education programs. Admissions to the MBA course will begin from January 2013, subject to approvals under the Foreign Educational Institutions Bill that is currently before the Parliament.

"The GMR campus of the Schulich School of Business will be a mirror image of Schulich’s Toronto campus with first-rate facilities, international faculty and an internationally focused curriculum," Schulich Dean Dezsö Horváth said. "The admission process will be common and the fee too will be the same as the Toronto campus at $30,000 per annum. The students can opt for either the Toronto campus or the Indian campus," he explained.

  • India’s Human Resources Development Ministry is mulling over implementing a mandatory accreditation system to check sources of funds and other modalities for higher educational institutions in the country, wrote July 13.

The independent accreditation agencies to be roped in for the purpose will be working under an "accreditation regulator" to manage issues of conflict of interest and ensure objectivity and transparency in the process, HRD Minister Kapil Sibal today said.

"The accreditation mechanism is expected to provide a credible method of informing all stakeholders, including potential students, employers, etc. of the academic quality benchmark of the institution and the programs of study. This will mirror the world-wide practice to ensure quality assurance and certification of institutions and programs of study," he said.

He said this while reading his speech copy at the ground-breaking ceremony of the proposed campus of the Schulich School of Business at York University near Rajiv Gandhi International Airport here.

GMR Group and the Schulich School of Business of the Toronto-based York University will jointly establish the business school near the airport. York University is Canada’s third largest university and one of the leading interdisciplinary teaching and research universities in that country.

Like drugs and alcohol, people can be addicted to foods also

A new study has suggested that people can become addicted to foods and exhibit behaviours similar to those of drug addicts or alcoholics, wrote Asian News International July 13.

Researchers, led by Caroline Davis from Toronto’s York University [School of Kinesiology & Health Science, Faculty of Health], have uncovered evidence that supports the case for food addiction in humans.

Using a questionnaire originally developed by Yale University to access drug addiction, a group of obese men and women were asked questions modified by replacing the word "drugs" with "food".

The respondents were then categorized by being "food" addicts or non-addicts, and then the two groups were compared in three areas relevant to conventional addiction disorders – clinical co-morbidities, psychological risk factors and abnormal motivation for the addictive substance.

While "food addicts" did not differ from non-addicts in their age or body weight (controlled for height), they displayed an increased prevalence of binge-eating disorder and depression, and more symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

They also were characterized by more impulsive personality traits, were more sensitive or responsive to the pleasurable properties of palatable foods, and were more likely to "self-soothe" with food.

"These results strongly reinforce the view that food addiction is an identifiable condition with clinical symptoms, and is characterized by a psycho-behavioral profile that is similar to conventional drug-abuse disorders," said Davis.

"The results also deliver much needed human support for the growing evidence of sugar and fat addiction in experimental animal research," she added.

The findings will be presented at the upcoming annual meeting of the Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior (SSIB).

  • The term "chocoholic" might be dangerously close to truth, wrote The Toronto Sun July 13. A new study suggests people can become addicted to foods and exhibit behaviours similar to those of drug addicts or alcoholics, according to researchers from Toronto’s York University, the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health and the University Health Network.

Fine arts grad’s band enjoys a breakout year

It’s been one crazy year for Canadian pop-rock band Neverest, wrote The Calgary Sun July 13. The Toronto quartet released its first single in October, dropped its debut EP in March and in June kicked off its biggest tour yet, opening for New Kids on the Block and Backstreet Boys across Canada.

"It’s absolutely blown up for us in the past year," says Neverest frontman Spyros (Spee) Chalkiotis [BFA Spec. Hons. ’10]. "It’s a dream come true. That’s all I can really say."

Neverest has previously shared the stage with fellow Canadian pop act, Stereos, but Chalkiotis says walking onto an arena stage in front of thousands of screaming NKOTB/ BSB fans is an entirely different experience. The 24-year-old singer and guitarist admits he had a lot to learn about performing in such big venues.

Chalkiotis says he’s taken a lot of his cues from the late Michael Jackson, whom he calls the king of the stage. But he’s also been able to glean advice from Neverest’s mentor and manager, Howie Dorough of Backstreet Boys.

Dorough took the young band under his wing after his 3 Street Management business partner CJ Huyer played him a couple of tracks. "We weren’t even a full group yet when we met CJ," says Chalkiotis, who studied jazz at York University [Faculty of Fine Arts].

Six years of gay marriage and Canada hasn’t crumbled

So much for the myth that same-sex marriage would aid the dissolution of straight marriages, wrote Postmedia News July 12, in a story about the sixth anniversary of the legalization of gay marriage in Canada. They dissolve quite nicely on their own, thanks to their internal dynamics, such as domestic violence, alcoholism, gambling and infidelity. These figures, by the way, come from such eminent sources as the Vanier Institute of the Family and Statistics Canada.

Indeed, a November 2009 report entitled "Divorce: Facts, Causes and Consequences", by Anne-Marie Ambert of York University in Toronto, found that "divorce rates have gone down substantially during the 1990s and have remained at a lower level since 1997, with minor yearly fluctuations."

Estevan welcomes York grad as art museum curator/director

Amber Andersen [MFA ’06] isn’t about to rock boats and make radical changes at the Estevan Art Gallery and Museum (EAGM), but she does intend to make her imprint as the gallery’s new curator/director, wrote Saskatchewan’s Estevan Mercury July 13.

Andersen has been hired by the EAGM’s board of directors to take over following the departure of Griffin Aaron Baker, who has accepted a similar position with the Mann Gallery in Prince Albert.

“I grew up on a farm northeast of Brandon, attended the University of Regina where I received my bachelor of fine arts degree in visual arts, then completed a master of fine arts degree at York University in Toronto,” she said, outlining her academic background.

Her work at York was completed in 2005 and she returned to Manitoba to accept a couple of summer positions at the Gallery at Wasagaming in Clear Lake National Park. Her other seasonal job was with the Art Gallery of Southwestern Manitoba in 2007, where she served as art educator, moving up to the position of exhibit curator for exhibitions and education in 2008.

“I then left the art world for awhile, completed a course in teaching English to speakers of other languages (TESOL), but I discovered I really wanted to stay in the arts, so I heard this position was opening up so applied for it and got it,” she said with a laugh.

Andersen said the chosen medium for her own work is print-making and drawing and she was just getting back into it in a serious way before the Estevan job opened. Now it’s on the back burner again as she devotes her energy to the new job.

On air

  • Stuart Shanker, distinguished research professor in psychology/philosophy in York’s Faculty of Health and director of the Milton & Ethel Harris Research Initiative, spoke about anxiety and childhood, on CBC Radio’s “Ideas” July 12.
  • York grad Christina Luck [BFA Spec. Hons. ’78] spoke about her artwork, which she has been exhibiting since 1981, on Barrie’s Rogers Television July 12.
  • Ananya Mukherjee-Reed, chair of political science in the York’s Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, took part in a panel discussion about the rise of the middle class in Asia, on TVO’s “The Agenda” July 12.