Smashing stereotypes around women and gaming

Any female who has put on a headset and joined an online video game is familiar with the scenario: young men between the ages of 13 and 25 barking commands and yelping excitedly are shocked into silence the second a female voice is heard among the chatter, wrote CBC News online Feb. 16. CBC quoted Nick Taylor, a postdoctoral researcher at York University who is part of the Feminists in Games Research Initiative – a group dedicated to understanding and deconstructing the “hyper-masculinization” of gaming. Taylor said he wants to “hold up a frank and honest mirror” to gamers whose words and actions ostracize female, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and other communities. The gaming world, he said, could learn from sociological research. Read full story.

Why do we stop to stare? We can’t help it; it’s instinct
Rubbernecking isn’t just a social phenomenon, but one built into our instincts, wrote the Montreal Gazette Feb. 15, in a story that included comments by York Professor Doug Crawford, Canada Research Chair in Visuomotor Neuroscience  in the Faculty of Health. “It really taps into the primitive reflexes that we share with animals. There’s a strong signal telling us to look at the distraction because it could be important to our safety,” he explained. Read full story.

York prof points to sleeper effect of all-day kindergarten
Is All-Day K Really A Leg Up?: Yes, it is, wrote Professor Carol Anne Wien of York’s Faculty of Education in a letter to The Globe and Mail Feb. 16. “Benefits include higher rates of college attendance and employment, lower rates of incarceration, more stability with higher rates of home ownership and employment,” wrote Wien. Read full story.

‘Undercover Boss’ with TTC chair airs Thursday
Toronto Transit Commission chair Karen Stintz will be featured on the television show “Undercover Boss Canada”, where she gets a first-hand look at how the country’s largest transit system stays on track, reported QMI Agency Feb. 15. At the end of the show, she presents one worker with a scholarship to York UniversityRead full story.

Argos keep Pottinger in the fold
Jason Pottinger
, a football player who’s studying part-time at York for his MBA, has signed a new contract with the Canadian Football League’s Toronto Argonauts, wrote the Toronto Sun Feb. 15. “It was a smooth negotiation,’’ said Pottinger. Hopefully, added the Sun, the same unfolds Thursday when he writes his mid-term at York U’s prestigious Schulich School of Business, one of Canada’s pre-eminent business programs. Read full story.

News Hour – Future of Toronto’s transit
Mixing the latest census numbers with proposed changes to Toronto’s transit plans, it becomes clear that subways may not be the best choice for the city, according to Professor Roger Kiel of the City Institute at York and the Faculty of Environmental Studies. Keil made his comments in an interview with Global Television Feb. 15. View the video.

Vietnamese short films win two prizes at CIFF
Director and York grad Cuong Ngo (BFA Spec. Hons. ’09) has won two awards at the California Independent Film Festival (CIFF) in San Francisco, reported Vietnam’s Feb. 16. Ngo’s film, Pearls of The Far East, is a set of seven love stories by seven women of different ages. Read full story.

Why I offered 5 Nigerians varsity scholarships abroad
“To think of paying the tuition of a child [to study] in the western world comes from God,” York student Mobo Oresegun told Nigeria’s Vanguard Media Feb. 16 in an interview about her “pet project”, the Luz Neema Foundation. “This is the basic idea of the foundation, and it is tied to the program I went for, which is International Development Studies,” she explained. “It is a way of giving back to the community.” Read full story.

Lawyer Geza Banfai receives Toronto Construction Association award
Recognized as one of Canada’s leading construction lawyers, Heenan Blaikie partner and Osgoode grad Geza Banfai (LLB ’76) is the recipient of one of the Toronto Construction Association’s top honours,  the 2011 Donald P. Giffin Construction Industry Achievement Award, reported the Daily Commercial News Feb. 16. Read full story.