News briefs

- April 20, 2009

Dal Directory goes green

Dalhousie is moving to an online staff and department directory. Making the information available online (, will save thousands of dollars in printing and transportation costs as well as the time to package, label and distribute 6,000 directories.

The move will also allow staff to immediately update the directory within 24 hours of receiving changes; a recurring problem with the printed phonebook was that it was outdated even before it was distributed.

For staff who wish to have a printed copy, ITS will provide an electronic PDF file that can be printed from any computer. The Dalhousie Print Centre can also produce a single black-ink only, 210-page bound copy with a card cover, for a small fee. Individual pages or sections can also be printed as needed.

-- Krista Olmstead

Don't throw out your stuff, donate it

The Halifax Dump and Run is scheduled for Sunday, May 3 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Studley Gym off University Avenue on the upper campus of Dalhousie University. The annual garage sale and flea market is organized by graduate students at Dalhousie and Saint Mary’s. Donations of furniture, clothing and books can be dropped off at Room 186 of the Loyola Building at Saint Mary’s from April 13 to 29.

For more information, visit:

-- Mary Somers

Renovations for a new Grad House

The Grad House is moving across the street.

Over the summer, renovations will take place at the big old house at 1252-1254 LeMarchant Street and re-open in time for September.

Chris Giacomantonio, outgoing president of Dalhousie Association of Graduate Students (DAGS), says the new space will be more open, spacious and have a larger patio.

“This means that DAGS will be able to get back to its regular business of advocating for Dalhousie grad students,” he says. “Also, of course, it's exciting to be part of a new social space on campus.”

Members of DAGS raised a pint to bid farewell to the old Grad House—“a building many consider a second home”—at a barbecue during the last week of classes.

Degree shifts online

Dalhousie’s School of Health Administration in the Faculty of Health Professions is responding to demand for greater access to its master’s degree program by offering it online starting in September.

The school will also continue to offer its Master of Health Administration, a degree which typically takes two years to complete, onsite as well, as it has for the past 25 years. The online degree is expected to take a year longer, but students will be able to complete it while staying in their jobs.

“This is an executive level degree targeted to mid- to senior health administrators or people in law or finance who want to make a career shift,” explains Joe Byrne, the school’s director. “The beauty of the degree is that it’s designed for someone who wants to keep working and complete their studies simultaneously. For employers, they’re going to retain their top talent even as they upgrade their skills and knowledge.”

Students will be expected to come to Dalhousie for a week-long plenary session in September, during which time they’ll meet their professors, re-familiarize themselves with the library and research methods and figure out the “nitty-gritty of participating online,” says Dr. Byrne. Then, through the year, they’ll take two courses each semester, in the fall, winter and spring/summer.
“We’re responding to industry needs,” says Dr. Byrne. “CEOs are telling us they like our quality, they like our graduates, and they’d like to have greater access.”

-- Marilyn Smulders

Pushing for licensure

Physiotherapists have it. Occupational therapists have it. Now recreational therapists want it too.

Students and professionals in therapeutic recreation are pressing to have their emerging field licensed like other health professions in Nova Scotia.

“What that means is that (a recreational therapist) has to meet minimum requirements to call themselves a recreational therapist,” explains Dawn Macdonald, president of the Therapeutic Recreation Association of Atlantic Canada (TRAAC). “Right now anybody can go out and call themselves a recreational therapist. Being licensed means the government endorses the title of recreational therapist and the qualifications to be a recreational therapist.”

Over the past seven years, the TRAAC has led the way in the licensure process. It hopes to see a bill introduced in the provincial legislature in the fall.

Last year, 32 students graduated from Dalhousie with a degree in Therapeutic Recreation. Along with kinesiology, health promotion and recreation management, the degree is offered through the School of Health and Human Performance in the Faculty of Health Professions.

-- Lukas Akerley


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