Senate Summed Up: Senators grant degrees to fall grads, approve new courses in Faculty of Arts, graduate studies

The UBC Vancouver Senate met this Wednesday to welcome new staff and senators, grant 2022 fall graduates their degrees and discuss some changes to existing academic programs. Here’s what you might’ve missed.

New staff and senator welcomed

The senate welcomed a new student senator Holly Patraschuk from the Faculty of Education. Interim president Deborah Buszard also welcomed to Rella Ng, new associate vice president enrolment services and registrar, and Frank Laezza, UBC’s new vice president,  finance and operations.

Degrees granted to fall 2022 graduates

A day after graduation ceremonies for the classes of 2020/21 commenced, senators voted unanimously to pass a motion approving the granting of degrees to 3543 new candidates for 2022 fall graduation.

Dr. Buszard shared that she had attended a number of graduation ceremonies for the 2020 and 2021 graduating classes throughout the day, and found them “particularly moving, given the unique circumstances of these students. 

Increased seats in Bachelor of Midwifery, Master of Science in Medical Genetics programs

Senators voted on two motions from the Admissions Committee, regarding adjustments to admissions requirements and enrolment targets for the Bachelor of Midwifery program and the Masters of Science in Medical Genetics program.

Chair of the Admissions Committee Carol Jaeger said  that four new seats were added to the Bachelor of Midwifery program this past September, and funding for eight new seats has been approved by the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills training for September 2023, which will increase the total number of seats from 24 to 32. 

The second motion proposed to increase the intake for the Master of Science in Medical Genetics program from six to eight seats.

Senator Steven Pelech asked  why the increase in seat sizes for both programs was so small. Joseph Anthony, associate dean of the faculty of medicine, clarified that the enrollment targets were determined by the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills training. 

Buszard agreed that more seats may be needed in the future.

“Increasing the number of midwives in the province by four may not really be the significant kinds of numbers we need, but these are the numbers we have from the province, so it’s really not negotiable,” she said. 

Both motions passed. 

New course codes for 2023/24 Winter Session

Senators also approved several new courses and course codes for undergraduate and graduate students. 

The motion included adding new course codes such as Cinema Studies (CINE) and Nordic Studies (NORD) in the faculty of Arts, and Cinema and Media Studies (CMST) in the faculty of graduate and postdoctoral studies.

There will also be a number of new courses offered in the 2023-24 Winter Session. In the faculty of Arts, new courses include AMNE 342: Translating the Bible, and LING 142: Language and Technology. In the faculty of graduate and postdoctoral studies, new courses will be added to Applied Science and Medicine programs.