|York Professors Donate Ontario Tax Dividends to Fund
for Needy Students
TORONTO, November 8, 2000 --York University Professors in the Faculty of Education are donating their $200 Ontario Taxpayer Dividend cheques to fund high-school graduates in the surrounding community in need of financial assistance to attend university.
"The faculty members wanted to express their deep concern about the rising cost of education and the effect that is having on working families who want to send their children to university," said Yorks Dean of Education, Prof. Terry Piper. "The idea came from the faculty, and I am moved by their generosity."
Piper said they expect to raise up to $10,000 to establish a new bursary to be awarded annually to a student from Westview Centennial Secondary School to study at York. "This affirms our commitment to supporting Yorks closest neighbours, the Westview community of schools," said Piper.
Toronto District School Board Superintendent Usha Finucane said the new bursary would show just how strong Yorks commitment is to the Westview community. "This bursary will make a fantastic difference in the communitys and students perceptions of their opportunities for educational advancement," said Finucane. She said the links with York also become stronger as more and more teachers-in-training in Yorks Faculty of Education head back into the community to pursue their careers.
York Universitys pioneering Westview Partnership between the York Faculty of Education and the North York Board of Education began in 1992 to enhance opportunities for the overall academic success of students attending the Westview Family of Schools in the surrounding multilingual and multicultural communities.
The schools, located in the northwest sector of Greater Toronto, are a microcosm of the educational challenge created by rapid urbanization and intensive migration in the post-20th century Canadian city. Through the partnership, Yorks Faculty of Education has established a distinctive Urban Teaching program that instills in teachers a knowledge of the teaching ethos needed in this environment. York teachers-in-training gain experience in the schools that complements their university education, and elementary and high-school students get a taste of university life through a variety of programs that stimulate their appetites for a higher education.
Since 1993, more than 70 Westview students from Grades 11 and 12 have spent six weeks of their summer working as interns in laboratories and in field-based research projects at Yorks Faculty of Pure and Applied Science. Established by Graham Orpwood, Professor of Science Education in the Faculty of Education, the Summer Science Program has not only improved students perceptions of science and scientists, but enabled them to see university as a possibility in their own futures. This program has recently been expanded to include placements at the York campus of Seneca College of Applied Arts and Technology.
Other programs, such as the Future Teachers Club, the Festival of the Arts and its Choral project, the Westview Alumni at York (WAY) mentoring program, the York Youth Connection summer camp for local children, and the Steps to Arts program in the Faculty of Arts are all paving pathways between York University and the community to make post-secondary education a recognizable and achievable goal for working families, with a view to the future vitality and social stability of the community.
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