Today's news

January 17, 2006

Deutsche Bank to offer three-year annual bursaries of £3,000 to students
Deutsche Bank will offer an annual bursary of £3,000 to students at five of the country's top universities as it steps up attempts to lure the brightest graduates to the financial services sector. The support will last for three years and will be awarded to one student at each of Oxford, Cambridge, Warwick, Imperial College London and the London School of Economics. The bank said the bursaries would be "open to all" and would not be focused on poorer students from disadvantaged backgrounds. Applicants would simply have to show a "demonstrable interest in the financial services industry". Although the bank in-sisted the scheme was not a "knee-jerk" reaction to a tightening in the market for graduate jobs, recruiters are aware that students at elite university careers fairs can afford to pick and chose.
The Financial Times

NUS launches coalition against higher fees
The National Union of Students is stepping up its fight against tuition fees today with the launch of a campaign to stop further increases. Alongside teaching unions from schools, colleges and universities, the union will lobby MPs as they consider raising the cap on variable fees, which now stands at £3,000. The coalition of students and members of the Association of University Teachers, the lecturers' union, Natfhe, the National Union of Teachers, the National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers and the Association of Teachers and Lecturers will argue that any further fee increases will have a negative effect on university admissions. Last week the Government admitted that university applications for courses starting in the autumn - the first year universities have been able to charge variable fees - were likely to fall for the first time in eight years.
The Guardian


Dublin's building boom puts priceless books in danger
The recent prosperity and development of the capital of Ireland is causing major problems for one of the city's most venerable institutions, the library of Trinity College, Dublin. The university has discovered to its dismay that a quarter of a million books, many of them irreplaceable and dating from the earliest days of print, have been damaged by building dust. The new Ireland is thus having a detrimental effect on the old, since this side-effect of Dublin's extraordinary building boom will cost millions to put right. The Long Room in Trinity is one of Ireland's architectural and academic glories, its vaulted ceiling and shelves of leather-bound volumes presenting a magnificent spectacle to half a million visitors every year.
The Independent

University honour for Joan Bakewell
Journalist Joan Bakewell has been named an honorary professor at Stirling University. The university's Department of Film & Media Studies has honoured Ms Bakewell in recognition of her contribution to print and broadcast journalism over the last 35 years. She first made her mark in television in the 1960s as the first female presenter of BBC 2's Late Night Line Up. In the 1970s she presented BBC travel programmes and in the 1980s was arts correspondent for the Corporation. In the 1990s she wrote and presented The Heart Of The Matter for BBC 1 and subsequently made the series My Generation and Taboo for BBC 2. Professor John Izod, head of film and media, said: "Joan Bakewell is one of the UK's most distinguished arts broadcasters and print journalists.
The Scotsman

College fears hidden agenda behind city's road depot plan
University and college chiefs are protesting against plans to move a transport depot to the former Ethicon factory site. The city council wants to build a roads depot on the southerly section of the Sighthill site. It needs a replacement for the current roads depot site in McLeod Street, which it hopes to convert into a new Tynecastle High School building. But Stevenson College fears the plans will make Sighthill an easy target for other industrial developments. Napier University chiefs have also expressed concerns about the noise the road depot proposal would generate and how it would look. A Napier University spokesman said it had provided comments on the council's plans to create a new depot on Bankhead Avenue.
The Scotsman

Mission set for Pluto
NASA is readying to send a speedy craft out to the edges of our Solar System, to give us our first ever close-up of Pluto. The New Horizons mission, which is due to launch from Florida on 17 January, will zoom past the Moon in just nine hours, travelling at a speed nearly 100 times that of a jet plane. The piano-sized craft is then scheduled to swing past Jupiter in 2007 picking up a gravity 'sling-shot' that will speed up its travel to Pluto. If all goes according to plan, the craft should reach Pluto by mid-2015. The smallest planet in our Solar System, Pluto is the only one that has not yet been visited by a spacecraft. It is located at the outermost zone of the Solar System, known as the Kuiper belt. Here a series of comets and icy planetary objects left over from the Big Bang reside.
Nature

Exercise linked to big drop in dementia risk
Regular exercise may reduce the risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease in the elderly by as much as 40 per cent, according to a new study. And the effect is even more pronounced for those who are more frail, say the researchers. The US team, at Group Health Cooperative in Seattle, studied a group of 1740 people aged 65 or over, all of whom began the study with good cognitive function. The participants reported how many days per week they had exercised for 15 minutes or more, in activities varying from walking to callisthenics to swimming. Their physical function was also recorded, including grip strength and walking speed. Each was evaluated again every two years and tests were performed to determine whether they had developed dementia.
New Scientist

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