University Canada West
|University Canada West|
|Motto||Tentanda Via Est (The way must be tried)|
|President||Dr. Arthur Coren|
|Location||Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada|
University Canada West (UCW) is a private for-profit educational institution3 in British Columbia, Canada. University Canada West was established by David Strong, a former president of University of Victoria. Dr. Arthur Coren is currently the president of the university. Founded in 2005, it was purchased in 2008 by the Eminata Group, which is based in Vancouver.456 The Eminata group also owns CDI College. Eminata is chaired by Peter Chung, a man convicted in 1993 in California for defrauding students at a computer school he ran.78
UCW offers Bachelor of Commerce, Bachelor of Arts and MBA degrees. University Canada West offers entrance requirements for students with a GPA of 65% or higher,9 and can accept credit for previous studies and work experience in the Degree Completion and MBA programs. (In comparison, major BC universities' GPA requirements are: low 80s and higher for UBC Vancouver and mid-70s for UBC Okanagan,10 70%–80% for UVic,11 and 80–90% for SFU.12) The academic year was originally organized into four ten-week terms, but changed to five eight-week terms in September 2009. Students are able to complete four courses of 40 contact hours each in a term. Degree Completion and MBA programs can be completed on campus or online.13 University Canada West is listed in the British Columbia Credit Transfer system,14 but it is only listed as a "recipient," and not as a "sender," of transferable university credits. When the Victoria campus went out of business in 2011, students reported that UCW credits would be not be transferred or transferred on a case by case basis.15 This was controversial because allegedly students were told when they paid for classes that credits were transferable even though the BC transfer website says they are not.15
- Bachelor of Commerce, General Studies (BCom)
- Bachelor of Arts Media and Communications (B.A.)
The university follows a system of five terms in a year, by which students can finish their degree in as little as two years.
- Master of Business Administration (MBA)
In addition to fulfilling the provincial charter, a university's membership with the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC) can be considered the de facto accreditation for Canadian universities, but University Canada West is a for-profit university; and therefore, it does not qualify for AUCC membership.1718
The University Canada West MBA is not accredited by any of the three biggest business school accreditation bodies.19 The three major accrediting bodies in there are the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), which accredits research universities, the Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP), which accredits universities and colleges, and the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE),all of which also accredit schools outside the US.
The Canadian Information Centre for International Credentials (CICIC), a unit of the Council of Ministers of Education of Canada (CMEC),20 identifies University Canada West on their "list of recognized and authorized postsecondary institutions" that (CICIC) claims to be “the only authoritative list of all postsecondary institutions (including ACCC's and AUCC's member institutions) in one web site that are recognized by the competent jurisdictional authorities.”21
- Vancouver campus: Vancouver's campus is located on the second and ground floor at 1111 Melville Street and is the only campus since its original Victoria campus was closed in 2011.24
Tuition for a full undergraduate degree program at UCAN is higher than similar programs at public universities due to the fact that it is not publicly subsidized. According to the Student Aid BC website, 30 per cent of UCW students defaulted on their government-backed loans in 2009. That compares with a default rate of 3.7% at the University of British Columbia and 4.7% at the University of Victoria.15
As the first private, for-profit university in British Columbia there is continuing controversy concerning the educational standards and governance that University Canada West would have to adhere to and whether it would down-grade other universities in Canada and British Columbia.25 In addition, there is continuing controversy regarding the business aspect of the school. For instance, the school has been sold twice in the last 5 years, is reportedly losing money, and recently closed down a campus.26262728
In 2004, before University Canada West was established, the Canadian Association of Teachers (CAUT) released an issue of the CAUT Bulletin which featured viewpoints of considerable dismay towards the prospect of University Canada West. Norma Wieland, president of the Confederation of University Faculty Associations of B.C., was quoted saying "A university should offer a wide range of instructional programs backed up by an extensive research mandate, from the information that has been made available to date, David Strong's institution is nowhere close to meeting that goal."25 The same 2004 article also featured Cindy Oliver, president of the Federation of Post-Secondary Educators of B.C., stating, "The B.C. government's emphasis on allowing the expansion of private universities is a failed vision," and "What we need in B.C. is for the government to commit to high-quality, affordable post-secondary education so that average and low-income students and their families are not disadvantaged. These private universities are notoriously expensive and certainly do not address the access problems for students."28 Robert Clift, executive director of the Confederation of University Faculty Associations(CUFA/BC), said, "The fundamental problem here is that it is impossible for the general public to know what they are getting with this institution. The public universities operate in an atmosphere of openness and accountability, but Strong has been able to conceal the details of his plans and yet still get government approval." The article reported that earlier in the year Strong was asked about the details of "the internal quality control process for degree programs and how academic governance would be structured," and Strong avoided the question by replying "the information soon would be made available on the UCW web site."28 In the article, Clift continued remarking, "At this point, it looks like faculty at University Canada West will have no formal authority in academic decision-making. There will be an advisory body, but it appears the final decisions about academic programs will be made by the corporate board of governors...Even though enrollment at these private institutions will be tiny compared to the total enrollment at public degree-granting institutions they have the capacity to generate a lot of ill will for everybody if things go wrong."25
In March 2011, the University shut down its Victoria, BC campus for "business reasons". Students were informed by email that they could continue their studies online or transfer to the Vancouver campus.15 Some students are finding it difficult to get their credits transferred to other institutions; they are also unhappy that the university's announcement closing the Victoria campus came immediately after the final day for dropping classes without financial penalty.29
In March 2012, The Province reported that dissatisfied students from UCW expressed "disappointment" with their experience at the university to BC Opposition leader Adrian Dix, who in turn called for a closer look at the regulatory bodies responsible for monitoring B.C.’s for-profit schools.30
In October 2012, "over 30 students, graduates, faculty and former teachers and employees interviewed by Hindustan Times have alleged that it is a university only in name, and that many of them were duped.".31
- Sun, Sep 8, 2013, 3:35 AM EDT – U.S. Markets closed (2012-11-13). "Dr. Skip Triplett Elected Chair of Board of Governance at University Canada West – Yahoo! Finance". Finance.yahoo.com. Retrieved 2013-09-08.
- "First Chancellor Appointed at University Canada West". Universitycanadawest.ca. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "Former UVic President Forms Private University". Ucan.ca. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "University Division". Eminata.com. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "Founder replaced at University Canada West". .canada.com. 2009-12-09. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "B.C. university teetering on bankruptcy has been sold". Canada.com. 2008-11-23. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "Bogus varsities prey on Indian students". Hindustan Times. Retrieved 2013-09-08.
- "A Response from Dr. Peter Chung, Executive Chairman of the Eminata Group". Ucanwest.ca. Retrieved 2013-09-08.
- "University Canada West Undergraduate Admission Requirements". Ucan.ca. Retrieved 2012-03-24.
- "Admission criteria – you@UBC". You.ubc.ca. Retrieved 2012-03-24.
- "Admission Average Cutoffs". Registrar.uvic.ca. Retrieved 2012-03-24.
- "Canadian high school – Admission Requirements". Students.sfu.ca. Retrieved 2012-03-24.
- "UCW Academic Programs on its website". Universitycanadawest.ca. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- UCW Page on the BC Transfer Guidedead link
- Posted: Mar 14, 2011 9:52 PM ET (2011-03-22). "CBC News – The National – Go Public – Students derailed by private university". Cbc.ca. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "CICIC > Fact Sheet No 5". Cicic.ca. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "Degree Accreditation in Canada" (PDF). Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "Information on how to become a member of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada". Aucc.ca. 2009-12-03. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "AACSB Business and Accounting Accreditation". Aacsb.edu. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "Canadian Information Centre for International Credential – Centre d'information Canadien sur les diplômes internationaux". Cicic.ca. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "CICDI – University Canada West (UCW)". Cicic.ca. Retrieved 2012-10-17.
- "Registry of EQA Institutions | BC – Education Quality Assurance". Bceqa.ca. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "Degree Quality Assessment Board" (PDF). Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "Private university leaves students out". Oncampus.macleans.ca. 2011-03-15. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "B.C. Accepts Private University". Cautbulletin.ca. 2004-01-09. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "Private university leaves students out – – Macleans OnCampus". Oncampus.macleans.ca. 2011-03-15. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- By JSteffenhagen (2008-11-23). "Private B.C. university sold – Report Card". Communities.canada.com. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "B.C. Accepts Private University". Cautbulletin.ca. 2004-01-09. Retrieved 2011-03-29.
- "Students derailed by private university". CBC News. 2011-03-22.
- "Global News | Latest & Current News – Weather, Sports & Health News". Globaltvbc.com. Retrieved 2013-09-08.
- "Bogus varsities prey on Indian students". Hindustan Times. October 14, 2012. Retrieved 2012-10-17.
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