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Thursday, May 13, 1999

  • 'The people, Lord, the people!'
  • Changes to SLC shops and services
  • Getting out the student vote
  • Universities and colleges sign pact
  • Other announcements and news

[Photo: cast of Godspell]

'The people, Lord, the people!'

"Godspell" opens tonight -- the premiere collaboration between the UW drama department and a professional theatre. The Waterloo Stage Theatre and a UW-based cast (right) will combine their talents and resources to present the show now through June 12, Thursday to Saturday at 8 p.m., with Sunday matinees at 2 p.m.

The theatre is providing the venue and financing, and UW is the source for actors, technical crews, set and costume design, stage management and other physical resources, said drama chair Joel Greenberg, who'll be directing the play. He directed a production of "Godspell" for the drama department in 1992, and sees the musical as a perfect vehicle for the venture. "It's high energy, upbeat, and accessible." The "light pop folk rock" music works for almost any audience, he added, and creates "an unrelenting wholesomeness that is quite disarming."

Tickets are available from the Waterloo Stage Theatre box office at 888-0000.

Changes to SLC shops and services

The loss of two Student Life Centre tenants -- the Campus Cove games room on April 30, and Music in Orbit, a CD store, at the end of May -- has prompted the centre's management board to rethink its use of space.

Focus groups and surveys are being planned to find out what students would like on the SLC lower level, says Ann Simpson, manager of the facility. The focus groups started in April, and a written survey is planned for June "to determine their interests and needs. Whatever we bring in, the students have to support it. If there are students who would like to contribute their ideas, we would like to hear from them."

The SLC management has placed ads requesting proposals in the Globe and Mail and The Record to attract new tenants, and Simpson says the board is not stuck on the idea of a music store and a games room.

The space occupied by Music in Orbit may be "a problem spot", Simpson admits, more appropriate for the location of a service than a retail outlet. "That end of the building is extremely quiet." With a parent store in Guelph, the move by Music in Orbit "is basically a business decision," she says. "They couldn't afford to keep both places open and will focus on the Guelph store."

Campus Cove, which offered a selection of video games and pool tables, moved into the lower level of the SLC in 1995. The Calgary company was subsequently purchased by an Etobicoke firm, Laserquest, which ran the business under the old name until the end of April.

"They were losing money," says Simpson. Campus Cove was originally chosen for the space because it offered the highest bid for the lease. "We did attempt to renegotiate the lease with Laserquest" when the company announced it was pulling out, she adds. Simpson still holds out hope a deal may be struck following resolution of the company's "internal struggles".

Another option being considered is splitting the games space between two tenants. "We hope to know more in the next couple of weeks."

The SLC is run by a management board, with the voting majority held by students. In addition to the Federation of Students president, the vice-president (finance), and a student at large, the university's associate provost (general services and finance) and associate provost (human resources and student services) sit on the board.

Getting out the student vote -- by Barbara Elve

Veronica Chau is eligible to vote in a provincial election for the first time on June 3.

As the vice-president (education) for the Federation of Students, she wouldn't miss a chance to have her say when education issues are at stake, and her mission is to get every other UW student to the polls as well.

"The Federation of Students has an obligation to remain non-partisan. We can't endorse or come out against a party," she says. Instead, the Feds plan to "inform students about education policies and let them decide. We want them realize how important this election is for students," adds Chau, pointing to the implications for tuition levels, student loans, even "the rent we pay".

She estimates there is a student population of 8- to 10,000 in the area this term, including students on campus, those on co-op work terms in Kitchener-Waterloo, and others living and working in the community this summer. "It's the size of a small town" -- and one that has the potential to make a real impact in the election, she believes.

Chau has pulled together an ad hoc committee of some six "very dedicated students" who are working to inform students about education issues, as well as how to cast their ballots.

With changes in election procedures, no enumeration is being conducted before the vote, so voters lists will be compiled from the results of the last enumeration. That works against transient populations, including students, who have relocated since the last election.

Students who are eligible to vote will have three options, says Chau, who has consulted with the local chief returning officer. They can go home and vote, obtain a certificate of residency from the chief returning officer, or go to the polls on voting day with "some yet-to-be-determined identification" to prove place of residence, she explained.

The committee is considering a number of means to get their message out. Brochures and posters will be produced to explain voting procedures and address education issues. Working in co-operation with the faculty association, the committee hopes to sponsor an all-candidates debate on campus. Candidates are being asked to explain their stand on education issues in a survey being prepared by the committee, and the idea of transporting students to the polls using available vans on campus is being explored.

Universities and colleges sign pact

Ontario's universities and colleges have signed an agreement "that will greatly enhance the opportunities for college diploma graduates to earn degrees from Ontario universities", the Council of Ontario Universities and the Association of Colleges of Applied Arts and Technology have announced.

Signed May 6, the Ontario College-University Degree Completion Accord "sets out a series of principles for developing degree completion arrangements between colleges and universities. It also provides a matrix to guide the creation of degree completion agreements and for the creation of new degree programs.

"Universities and colleges will work together voluntarily within the framework of the accord with each agreement requiring approval by the relevant governing bodies of the institutions."

"The signing of the Accord marks a profound leap in educational fairness and accountability for Ontarians," said Gary Polonsky, president of Durham College. "It was unthinkable three years ago and I want to commend those who made it happen, starting with Minister David Johnson, whose passionate and insightful leadership brought us to this goal."

And for the universities, David Atkinson, president of Brock University, said, "Many Ontario universities have devoted substantial efforts to developing collaborative programs with individual colleges. With the development of the framework, we will now be able to work toward the creation of course groupings that are applicable to a greater number of programs and institutions."

"This is a move that should be applauded for making postsecondary education more flexible and accessible," said Michael Belmore of the Ontario Community College Student Parliamentary Association.

The Accord is the work of the College-University Consortium Council, set up in 1996 to "facilitate, promote and coordinate joint education and training ventures that will: aid the transfer of students from sector to sector; facilitate the creation of joint programs between colleges and universities; and, further the development of a more seamless continuum of postsecondary education in Ontario."

Other announcements and news

News from Britain

Announcing "strong support for strike action" in a national vote by professors, Britain's Association of University Teachers said yesterday there will be a one-day strike on May 25. In addition, AUT members will be asked to begin a token boycott of work on spring exams, will stop doing government-mandated paperwork -- and "On designated dates to be announced at short-notice by the Executive Committee, members will be asked to unplug phones and not to deal with any e-mails connected with the administration of their universities." The AUT is rejecting a 3.5 per cent salary increase offered by the employers.
An information meeting for staff, about the proposed change to twice-a-month pay, will be held at noontime today, sponsored by the staff association. The meeting begins at 12 noon in Math and Computer room 4021.

"It's not too late!" says a flyer circulated by Brenda Sokolowski of the geography department, who's hoping to organize a Weight Watchers group on campus this spring. Seven weeks in the program cost $98 ("continuing members receive a free gift") and an information and registration meeting is scheduled for today at 12 noon in Math and Computer room 5136. For more information, Sokolowski can be reached at ext. 2433.

The chemical engineering department presents a seminar at 3:30 today, in room 2517 of "Engineering I" (now officially the Doug Wright Building). The speaker is Arun Mujumdar of McGill University, talking on "Transport Processes in Impinging and Opposite Jet Flows".

A new co-op student group will hold its first meeting today at 4:30, in the "Employers' Lounge", Needles Hall room 1029. "Any students interested in co-op are welcome to attend," says English applied studies student Tamara Chioreanu. The new group is an offshoot of the former Students Advising Co-op, which is being reorganized.

The Carousel Dance Centre is using the Humanities Theatre again this evening for its spring concert (7:00). Saturday, there will be more dance students in the theatre, as Ballet on the Grand has it booked for morning, afternoon and evening.

Wanted this week by the local Volunteer Action Centre: "outdoor friends" to accompany senior residents to the therapeutic garden at Sunnyside Home, for an hour once a week; assistants of many kinds (including "fire watchers") for the K-W Symphony's Open Ears Festival May 19-24; a handyperson for Participation House, someone with "basic home repair and woodworking skills and a little creativity". And there's more, of course. The VAC can be reached at 742-8610 for more information.


Editor of the Daily Bulletin: Chris Redmond
Information and Public Affairs, University of Waterloo
credmond@uwaterloo.ca | (519) 888-4567 ext. 3004
http://www.bulletin.uwaterloo.ca | Yesterday's Bulletin
Copyright © 1999 University of Waterloo