The night that launched Canada’s 50 years in space

“This was a brand-new frontier,” says Professor Paul Delaney, an astronomer at York University, reported the Ottawa Citizen Sept 1 in an article about Canada’s first foray into space. “Most of the emphasis was on people,” as the Soviet-U.S. space race pushed astronauts farther from Earth, “but the notion of science was sitting in the back,” he says. “Canada to this day continues to probe the upper atmosphere. There are still surprises out there…” Read full story.

The Port Lands have awited decontamination for years: Here is the plan on how to bring them back
York environmental studies Professor Emeritus Gene Desfor cites differing priorities: While Waterfront Toronto represents the public interest, TPLC is primarily focused on maximizing revenue, reported the National Post Sept. 1. Read full story.

Is decline of unions leading to decline of middle class?
The country’s largest private-sector union is ready to go to war to restore the hard-won labour rights it says are being stolen from working people. David Doorey, a York University professor of labour law, says, “The right-to-work debate is a political one, not economic. It’s about trying to weaken the labour movement by making it more difficult for unions to collect their revenues so they are less effective in advocating for workers and voicing political dissent. For every study that suggests right-to-work laws create jobs, there’s another finding the exact opposite. Politicians just cherry-pick those that fit their political agenda,” reports the Toronto Star Aug. 31.  Read full story.

Is it time for frosh week to grow up?
“I absolutely love loud and unnecessary school spirit,” says Faghya Shafiq of York’s Schulich business school. “Showing spirit is something that unites people and allows them to represent themselves as a team,” CBC News reported Shafiq as saying in an article about university frosh activities, Sept. 3. Read full story.

When scanners fall silent
There are good reasons to consider the impact of encryption on the accountability of police, says Osgoode Hall Law School Professor Jamie Cameron in a Hamilton Spectator article Sept. 1 about Hamilton police moving to an encrypted communications system. Read full story.

Elections Canada’s extreme makeover: Thirty new seats will likely help Tories, bring more diversity to Parliament
“The main competition [in the Toronto suburbs] will be between the Conservatives and the Liberals,” York University political scientist Robert Drummond was reported as saying in the National Post Aug. 31. Read full story.

Green Workforce
Matt Galloway spoke with Steven Tufts, who he teaches geographies of labour at York University on CBC Metro Morning, Sept. 3. Click here to listen.

Autistic teen face burden of bullying
Debra Pepler, who researches bullying among vulnerable children at York University, was quoted in the NY Daily News and others about a new study in which a survey of parents found that close to half of teenagers with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are bullied at school. Although Pepler wasn’t involved in the survey, she was quoted in the article talking about strategies that may help reduce bullying toward autistic children. Read full story.

Three women find their way as students
For Shannon Marek, 28, going back to school is giving her a chance at a new life. Next month, she’ll be moving to Toronto to attend York University to study communications, reported Sept. 3 in a story about new students.  Read full story.

Canadian culture gets sexy – finally
Karen Stanworth, a professor of visual arts and education at York University, says that the history of Canadian art “has tended to authorize a vision of [itself]” that is founded in the pastoral, in works such as The Stone Angel and Surfacing, in the Group of Seven, reported The Globe & Mail Aug. 31 in an article about Sarah Polley’s new film and sex in Canadian art. Read full story.

Best of August
York student Yieshima Gupta posed at the University for a photo that appeared in the Toronto Star’s photo blog Sept. 2. Gupta, an international student from Dubai, was one of more than 5,000 York University students who took advantage of a wider offering of summer courses this year, so she can have a lighter load this fall and hold down her part-time job on campus in the Student Success office. Read full story.