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Daily Bulletin

Friday, January 9, 1998

University of Waterloo • Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
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Ages 23-25 get shots next week

Meningitis vaccinations will be available next week for UW students and employees who are just over the present age limit of 22, the director of health services said last night.

The announcement comes as UW winds up three days of vaccination clinics aimed at people in the 22-and-under age group that's been defined as the target by the Waterloo Region community health department. Today's clinic in the Student Life Centre, for students up to 22 and children (2 to 22) of students, faculty and staff, runs from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

"We are not recommending that individuals over than 22 years receive vaccination," said the health services director, Barbara Schumacher. But some people clearly want the shots, she said:

Health Services has received a steady stream of inquiries from many concerned individuals over the age of 22 years (and their parents) hoping to obtain vaccination through doctor's prescription. Health Services has confirmed today that we will receive, from the manufacturer, the same type of vaccine which has been used by the Community Health Department. This vaccine will be available for University of Waterloo students, staff and faculty, ages 23 to 25, who have made the choice to be inoculated against meningococcal meningitis.

We understand and support the actions taken by our local public health authorities. We are not recommending that individuals older than 22 years receive vaccination; however, we respect the autonomy of individuals to make their own health related decisions. As the health care provider for this community, we are scheduling clinics to make the vaccine accessible for those who desire it. We will not have the additional nurses who were provided for us during the Community Health Clinics and appreciate your patience and understanding as we attempt to meet your needs with our own Health Services staff. Regular operation of our medical clinic will be adjusted to permit staffing of these clinics.

The clinics will run Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the Student Life Centre, on this schedule: "Clinics are subject to vaccine availability," Schumacher noted. "Bring your OHIP number (provincial health card or UHIP), your UW ID and identification such as birth certificate which confirms age." She noted that the clinics are operated by UW itself and are "not for the general K-W community".

Students who are in the health insurance plan get their vaccinations at no direct charge; "arrangements have been made with the insurance carrier to bill the carrier directly." For others, including staff and faculty, there's a $20 charge.

Fed Hall named in meningitis case

The Waterloo Region medical officer of health said yesterday that UW's Federation Hall was the place where a Mississauga man, hospitalized with meningitis this week attended a New Year's Eve party. Earlier reports had just said the party was somewhere in Kitchener-Waterloo, where mass vaccinations have been taking place since several people fell ill with meningococcal meningitis beginning in mid-December.

Local and Peel Region officials and the chief medical officer of health for Ontario were on hand for a news conference yesterday morning to report on their investigation of the case. Says a statement: "The only close sharing activities which may have led to transmission of the bacteria were confined to the close group of friends. . . . As such, the general public at the party are judged to be at no greater risk from having attended the party than they would otherwise be.

"Any recommendation that party attendees consider vaccination contradicts the key public health message we have sought to reinforce from the beginning of the outbreak: that the bacteria are transmitted by specific forms of close sharing behaviour and not via casual contact."

Health officials "are not recommending an expansion of the upper age range for public health-administered vaccinations, which remains 22 years of age," the statement said. The Mississauga victim is 23.

Cancer centre coming to UW

The Canadian Cancer Society and National Cancer of Institute of Canada will move an important research agency to UW, the university's news bureau has announced. The Centre for Behavioural Research and Program Evaluation will be based in the faculty of applied health sciences. An official launch is scheduled for Tuesday at 4 p.m. in Matthews Hall, with Cancer Society officials and Ontario's minister of health expected to attend.

Plenty of non-credit courses

Job seekers can pick up tips on finding work and job holders can learn how to handle stress better by enrolling in UW's continuing education program of brief non-credit courses. Two new courses offered this winter are "The Finding Work Workout" and "Strategies for Stress", both listed along with many other courses in the new continuing education calendar. Courses begin this month and next.

Says a release from the UW news bureau:

"The Finding Work Workout" promises participants an opportunity to develop strategies, documents and skills that will improve a job seeker's chances. Specifically, students in the course will learn how to determine an employer's needs, develop strategies for effective and efficient work searches and network with increased skill and confidence. Once they land a job, Strategies for Stress will show them how to effectively manage the way they respond to stress. They will discover the strategies best suited for the nature of their stress and develop individual action plans.
New courses in the continuing education program this term include these: "It's important to stay relevant and up-to-date with new technologies, embrace change and consider new ways of thinking," says Maureen Jones, manager of continuing education. "That's what lifelong learning is all about."

Calendars are free from the distance education office at 156 Columbia Street, phone 888-4002.

Students elect new leaders

Mario Bellabarba can't be president of the Federation of Students forever, so his successor and the rest of the 1998-99 Fed executive are to be elected next month.

Nomination forms are available this week for Fed president and four vice-presidents, 26 students' council seats, and five undergraduate seats on the UW senate. The senate forms are available from the university secretariat, and the other forms from the Federation office in the Student Life Centre. The nomination deadline is January 16 at 4:30 p.m. The campaign gets underway on January 30. Elections will be held February 10 and 11 for the Fed positions, which run from May 1, 1998, to April 30, 1999, as well as for the senate seats which run from May 1, 1998 to April 30, 2000. For further information, contact Avvey Peters, the Feds' chief returning officer, at ext. 6781.

Bellabarba, who's finishing his second one-year term as Fed president, says there's no way he will try for a hat-trick. "I am leaving the University of Waterloo at midnight on April 30," he insists. He's going back to the career in engineering that he interrupted to take the Fed helm in 1996 after serving as president of the Engineering Society: he has a job with the Latin American branch of an oil development firm, Schlumberger Limited. "It involves lots of drilling and concrete, so it'll keep the civil engineer in me pretty happy," he says.

And the rest of the news

Today is the last day for return to campus interviews for co-op students who were off at work in the fall term. Then they can turn their thoughts to academics, right? Well, only until Tuesday. Students who will be taking part in interviews this term, for spring term jobs, should pick up the master copy of their co-op record on Tuesday, from the co-op offices in Needles Hall. And job postings start Wednesday.

The Kiwanis travelogue series brings a session on Scotland to UW's Humanities Theatre at 8:00 tonight.

Distance education students across Canada, some 3,100 of them, will be writing fall term exams tomorrow at 72 locations. That figure could go down a little, what with the ice storms making normal life close to impossible in Montréal, Ottawa and surrounding areas. McGill University in downtown Montréal, for example, has cancelled classes and closed offices until Monday, and turned its Student Union building into an emergency shelter "as long as the University has electrical power". From Ottawa, I had a note yesterday from third-year computer science student Jason Testart, beginning a work term at Cognos, who said the hydro power had been on and off, on and off, and the bus service was "still going, but slow", with the weather getting worse.

Sports this weekend: the men's and women's basketball teams both host McMaster tomorrow in the PAC (women at 11:45, men at 2:00). The hockey Warriors, who defeated Laurier 1-0 last night, will face them again Sunday afternoon (2:00) at the Columbia Icefield.

Finally, about the memorial service for Muthu Chandrashekar: in yesterday's Bulletin I noted that it will be held Monday in the Theatre of the Arts, but I omitted to give the time. It begins at 2:30 p.m. Also, I described Chandrashekar as having been acting chair of the department of systems design engineering; in fact he served a regular term as department chair.


Editor of the Daily Bulletin: Chris Redmond
Information and Public Affairs, University of Waterloo
credmond@uwaterloo.ca -- (519) 888-4567 ext. 3004
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