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Friday, April 30, 1999

  • 2,800 get early admission offers
  • Changes to parental leave policy
  • 'Genre-bender' CD is launched
  • Busy day, busy weekend


2,800 get early admission offers

UW has sent "early conditional offers" of admission to some 2,884 students in the past few weeks, Peter Burroughs, director of admissions in the registrar's office, said yesterday. That's almost a quarter of the total number of offers he expects UW to make as it puts together the 4,000-member first-year class for September 1999.

The early offers came from the faculty of arts (1,529 of them, or 43 per cent of the total offers arts will make), science (1,222, or 53 per cent), and engineering (133, or 8 per cent). Some were sent out as early as March 29, others in the second week of April.

Thousands more offers of admission will be sent out May 18, which has been announced as the date would-be students can expect to get their good or bad news from Waterloo. "We made it very clear from the outset that most of our admission decisions would be made on May 18," says Burroughs in a fact sheet.

It says admissions committees reviewed students' marks from grade 11, grade 12 and their current OAC courses, as well as other information that was asked for on application forms, before making their decisions. Minimum averages "used to make most early admission decisions" ranged from 75 per cent in arts and science regular programs to 90 per cent in accounting.

Burroughs notes that many of the students who have been offered admission don't know yet whether UW will also offer them scholarship money or residence rooms. The only scholarship offers so far have gone to 178 arts students, and the only residence offers have gone to "arts, science and engineering applicants who are either scholarship recipients or reside at a predetermined distance from Waterloo". The rest of the scholarship and residence offers will also be sent out May 18.

Says his fact sheet: "Was it worth it? Probably not given the extensive adjustments that we have had to make this year to make our early offers and the 'crush' that we anticipate in May." It's the first year that Ontario universities have been allowed to send out offers of admission so early if they want to. Admissions directors from campuses across the province were meeting yesterday to compare notes on how the process has gone so far.

Changes to parental leave policy

Changes to UW's Policy 14 on "Pregnancy, Adoption and Parental Leaves" for staff and faculty members were announced this week after approval by the president.

The changes were recommended by the staff relations committee and faculty relations committees. They were prompted, a memo says, "by changes in the Employment Standards and Employment Insurance Acts and revisions to Policy 39, Leaves of Absence for Staff Members." A draft of the revised policy was put "on view" in January for comments.

"The policy has been rewritten to improve clarity and readability," says the memo, made public by the university secretariat, "and also reflects two substantive changes." These are the changes:

'Genre-bender' CD is launched -- from the UW news bureau

Composer and pianist Carol Ann Weaver expresses attitude and aptitude for song cycles on journey begun, which is her second CD release of five original tunes. For Weaver, an associate professor of music at Conrad Grebel College, journey begun is a "genre-bender," pushing the parameters of conventional musical style, like the renowned Romanticism composers.

"Singer/songwriter Cate Friesen and I like to play at the edges of our respective boundaries and here our musical styles merge -- folk, lyric, avant garde, jazz," says Weaver.

Colouring her pieces with the mbira (Zimbabwean thumb piano), ocarina (round clay flute of Chinese/African ancestry), mchirima (Kenyan coastal drum) and a Central American rainstick, Weaver's approach to music is fresh and daring. The song cycles -- a group of poems set to music, usually for piano or voice -- reflect two sides of Weaver: her affection for nature and Mennonite heritage.

On the first song cycle, entitled "I Have Been a Traveller", Weaver collaborates with Judith Miller, who is a Canadian poet and director of English language programs at Renison College. Miller's poetry is endowed with the spirit of the Canadian landscape. It reflects a concern for creativity and inner feeling, using journey as a central theme and drawing upon natural imagery. "I began the poems about five years ago," says Miller, "as a response to the calling of the migrating geese."

Weaver collaborated with American poet Shari Wagner on the second song cycle, entitled "Houses".

At Conrad Grebel, Weaver teaches composition, jazz, women's music and theory. She is also the former chair of the Association of Canadian Women Composers. Her music has been played on CBC radio and TV, and many of her commissioned choral works have been performed in Canada and the United States.

Weaver begins another journey soon. She will spend a sabbatical leave in South Africa at the University of Natal in Durban, studying mbqanga music and women's involvement in traditional and popular music of South Africa.

The public is invited to hear Weaver and friends at a CD release celebration and concert on Saturday (May 1) at the Canadian Clay and Glass Gallery in Waterloo. Admission is $5 for adults and free for children. The festivities start at 8 p.m. with hors d'oeuvres, cash bar and door prizes, followed by a concert at 9 p.m.

Busy day, busy weekend

Staff are taking inventory today in many UW departments, since it's the last day of the 1998-99 fiscal year. The bookstore, UW Shop, Techworx and computer store are closed (tomorrow too) and graphics outlets will close at noon (Main Graphics and Photo Imaging at 11 a.m.).

Ballots are going out today in the second round of the election of a staff representative on the board of governors. "The mailing labels used for the first round were tainted," says a statement from the university secretariat. A list of the seven candidates (there were eight in the first round of voting) and their statements can be found on the Web. Voters should return their ballots by 3 p.m. Thursday, May 20, in the envelopes provided.

Guelph celebrates

The Ontario Agricultural College, now part of the University of Guelph, is marking its 125th anniversary. Among the celebrations: a noontime picnic today, in front of Guelph's Johnston Hall, for all current and former employees of OAC and the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, with which OAC is inextricably linked.
The Institute for Computer Research today presents a seminar by Wolfgang Heidrich of the Max Planck Institute for Computer Science in Saarbrücken, Germany. He'll speak (1:30 p.m., Davis Centre room 1304) on "Realistic, Hardware-Accelerated Shading and Lighting".

Work by 15 fine arts students will be on display for the coming month in the Modern Languages art gallery. The fourth-year honours exhibition, titled simply "15", opens today with a reception from 6 to 8 p.m.; it'll run through May 28.

Women Alive, some 1,000 strong, come to the Ron Eydt Village conference centre this weekend. The religiously-oriented women's convention is an annual event at UW, the first and biggest conference of the summer. Also at the Village, but considerably smaller in scale, is a group of optometrists here for a continuing education program.

The UW libraries will be closed Saturday and Sunday (not to mention this evening).

Panel on research

Looking ahead to Tuesday, May 4: the faculty association will sponsor a panel discussion at 2:30 that day about the federal government's draft report "Public Investments in University Research: Reaping the Benefits". Vice-president (university research) Carolyn Hansson will be among the panel members; the event will be held in Needles Hall room 3001.
Saturday evening will bring "an unforgettable cultural experience" to the Humanities Theatre: "a dance drama in English in the Bharatanatyam tradition", performed by Menaka Thakkar and her dance company. The two-hour performance combines dance in the classical style, music, and poetry based on the Sanskrit verses of the Ramayana. Tickets are $25, with much of the net revenue going to support the HopeSpring Cancer Support Centre; they're available from the Humanities box office, 888-4908. Saturday's performance begins at 7:30 p.m.

Also Saturday evening, St. Paul's United College will be holding its 9th annual fund-raising dinner and auction, with alumnus and raconteur David MacKenzie as master of ceremonies. Tickets have been for sale at $50 from the college office.

The Waterloo Potters' Workshop, which includes more than a few UW-affiliated people, is holding its spring sale tonight (6 to 9), Saturday (10 to 5), and Sunday (noon to 4) at the Waterloo Recreation Complex on Father David Bauer Drive, just west of campus.

And of course, since the spring term begins on Monday bright and early, Sunday will be a busy day on campus with the arrival of students at the residences.

CAR


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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