Local News Briefs

Funds announced for U of M ag research

Over $700,000 in funding from the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CsomethingFI) will be allocated to three researchers at the University of Manitoba who are working on projects related to agriculture and food sciences, announced Minister of State (Science and Technology) Gary Goodyear last Thursday.

The funding is part of the CFI’s Leaders Fund, which is providing a total investment of $53 million to help 207 projects at 42 institutions across the country.

The U of M researchers who received funding are Michel Aliani, John Hanesiak and Juan Rodrigues-Lecompte. The funding will go towards establishing new labs for the researchers.

“These researchers have embarked on truly innovative research programs in areas that are becoming increasingly important to our society,” says Digvir S. Jayas, U of M vice-president (research and international), in a press release issued by the university.

“The continued support of our government is an asset to not only our researchers but also to the people of Manitoba.”

Most young ’tobans working in chosen field: study

Young Manitobans seem to be pretty satisfied with their work, according to a Harris/Decima survey.

The survey, sponsored by job hunt website Monster.ca, found that nearly three quarters of Manitobans aged 18 to 30 said they were working in their chosen field, reported the Winnipeg Free Press. Nationally, only 69 per cent of those aged 18 to 30 said they were in jobs related to their chosen career path.

The survey also compared the workplace values of those aged 19 to 30, labeled “Generation Y,” to the baby boomer generation, or those between the ages of 47 to 62. Both generations said they place a high value on having work-life balance, making good money, job security and opportunities for advancement and flexibility.

Green Party aims for full slate in provincial election

All 57 ridings will see a Green party candidate in the upcoming provincial election, the Green party of Manitoba announced Saturday.

We want to form government,” Manitoba Green party leader James Beddome told CBC News. “We might be the underdog, but people sometimes like the underdog. And we have three really boring parties, so I think it’s time for something interesting.”

In the last provincial election, the party ran candidates in 15 ridings and did not win any seats in the legislature.

Beddome said the party will be announcing its candidates in the next few days.

U of M study questions university’s hiring practices

A study authored by three U of M professors is calling the university’s hiring practices into question.

The study, titled “Ten Years After: Sex and Salaries at a Canadian University,” compares the ratio of male and female faculty members from 1993 and 2003, as well as their starting salaries and record of promotion.

Figures from 2003 show that number of female faculty members at the U of M had increased to 28.5 per cent from 19.4 per cent in 1993. However, most of the increase occurred in the lowest paid positions.

Furthermore, women were paid less in every job category analyzed, according to 2003 figures.

The study was authored by economics professors Laura Brown and Elizabeth Troutt, and sociology professor Susan Prentice, and published by the journal Canadian Public Policy last month.

Brown told the Winnipeg Free Press that although the number of female faculty members is increasing, she “would call the pace glacial.”

She also pointed out that even though over half of U of M students are women, it is “probably going to take two generations” for the number of female professors to catch up with the number of male professors.

A university spokesperson said the U of M is questioning the methodology of the study, including the fact that it used figures that were eight years old.

“Our commitment is clear to employment equity,” said Leah Janzen, associate director of Marketing Communications for the U of M.

“To us, [the study] doesn’t give the complete picture.”