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Thursday, May 27, 1999

  • Downey says farewell at barbecue
  • UW linked to Internet provider
  • Poems and drawings launched today
  • What's new under the sun

Downey says farewell at barbecue

"You have treated me with a kindness and courtesy that will impress itself in my memory for as long as I live," UW president James Downey told staff and faculty at a going-away barbecue lunch in his honour at Village I yesterday. He ends his presidential term on May 31.

[Downey photo] Capturing places in his memories will be the campus nursery school children and their teachers who invited Downey to join them for cookies and milk, the cheerful greetings every morning from Elizabeth Lukezic in the parking kiosk and Maria Pereira at the coffee shop in Needles Hall, "and others who have done so much under tough circumstances", he said. Singled out for special appreciation was provost Jim Kalbfleisch, who was named to that second-in-command post within weeks after Downey became UW's president in 1993.

"The past six years have been a slice," quipped Downey, "particularly the first four years.

"They were times that tested our mettle, times of loss," he added, enumerating the challenges of his early days. "What we didn't lose was our nerve, our sense of balance. We didn't turn on each other, and we came through it with distinction."

Downey will look back on his term not only as a period of retrenchment, but one of achievement, he said, reciting a litany of accomplishments by students, faculty and staff. It is also significant, he added that "people think highly and well of us."

"The strong sense of community" at UW has served it well in the past, he concluded, and will continue to be needed in a future that appears brighter, but will not be without challenges.

Offering thanks on behalf of that community were Judy McCrae, director of athletics, and director of business operations Bud Walker, who presented Downey with a certificate good for a year's supply of cookies from UW food services -- to fill the farewell cookie jar presented to the president by plant operations personnel.

UW linked to Internet provider

Sentex Communications Corp. and UW have completed a high-speed interconnection of the UW campus network and the Sentex network in Kitchener-Waterloo, the university and Sentex announced this week.

Communication between computers in the two networks has been happening over the Internet for years, but this direct local interconnect creates a faster path between UW and Sentex's home and business Internet customers.

"We are very excited with this new link," said Keith Winter, owner and president of Sentex. "It provides tremendous added value to our regional high-tech customers and their employees who work closely with the university. They will now see the lowest latency levels in the region when communicating with the university."

"It also provides that same value to UW students, faculty, and staff who have chosen to obtain their home Internet dial-up connectivity from Sentex," said Roger Watt of UW's information systems and technology department. "We'd like to have similar direct connections with the other major Internet service provider companies in the community, for the same reasons. What we've done is an experimental first step until there's a broader alternative that will benefit everyone -- a high-speed community network as envisioned in the federal government's Smart Communities program."

The Panel on Smart Communities was created to provide the federal minister of industry with expert advice on the need and opportunity to establish Canadian leadership in developing the communities of the future and in the international Smart Communities movement. It was chaired by David Johnston, who just happens to be UW's president-designate, taking office next week.

A "Smart Community" is described as one that uses information and communication technologies in new and innovative ways to empower its residents, institutions, and the region as a whole. Communities applying for funding under the Smart Communities Demonstration Project must already have an integrated, operational, and sustainable human and technological community network in place to deliver key services to the majority of the community. One of the important aspects of that is an agreement between the Internet Service Provider companies in the community to provide direct connections between their networks, to improve the delivery of on-demand and real-time services.

Poems and drawings launched today

Canadian poet Judith Miller, an associate professor of English at Renison College, has collaborated with local printmaker Nicholas Rees to publish an innovative book entitled Glyph that's being launched today. The book showcases Miller's collection of intriguing "word sketches," enhanced by Rees's drawings and colour reproductions of his intaglio prints.

The book launch is today at "Celebrating Connections," a gala for friends and benefactors of Renison. Then Glyph will be available at local independent bookstores.

Miller says, "I've had a lifelong fascination with words and their ghosts. Here they all weave around one another into word sketches." An example from Glyph: "Monk. From the Greek, monakhos: solitary. A person who chooses living apart. Poverty, chastity and obedience. Heroic. When I was small, the monks were men who made cinnamon-and-raisin bread. Wonderful toast on the cold air of after-skating. A gift. And now Gregorian chant fills my house with music of a place apart."

Rees is an award-winning print artist and sculptor, and son of the late Wyn Rees, the first principal of Renison College. He studied fine arts at UW under the guidance of Virgil Burnett, now a professor emeritus in UW's department of fine arts. He operates Pasdeloup Press in Stratford, which published the new book. It contains eight of Rees's colour intaglio prints, mostly reproduced in their actual size. It also contains many thumbnail sketches from Rees's drawing books.

Designed by Tom Bishop of Ampersand Studios of Waterloo, the 64 pages are printed on ivory paper with Hiroshige Book typeface for those who treasure the sight and feel of print on bound paper.

Form and content are not separate in Glyph. It is described as an "art" book -- which was hand-collated by Miller, Rees and friends. The intaglio print on the front cover is "tipped-on" (epoxy process).

What's new under the sun

Extra jobs have been arriving for co-op students who are scheduled to go out to work this fall. "Due to the large volume of jobs, there will be an additional co-op posting," says Olaf Naese of the co-op education and career services department. "The seventh posting will be available Monday, May 31, by noon, and will close Tuesday, June 1, at 8 p.m. Starting May 31, the number of applications permitted by students will increase from 18 to 21."

Several special lectures are planned by the department of Germanic and Slavic languages and literatures over the next few weeks, with the first one coming at 9:00 this morning. Jill Scott of the University of Toronto will speak on "Choreographing a Cure: Elektra, the Waltz and Modern Dance". (Location: Humanities room 373.) Then tomorrow, Grit Liebscher of the University of Texas at Austin will speak (9:30, same location) on "Deixis and Cultural Knowledge: Context in Language Use and Language Teaching".

[Carrington] Peter Carrington of the sociology department (pictured at left) will talk about crime today as the "Arts Talks Back" lecture series continues. Carrington, whose work on the demographics of crime was described in a UW news release earlier this year. Carrington, an announcement says, "will analyse data on a nonrandom sample of approximately 2.5 million people apprehended by police in Canada between 1992 and 1997". The talk begins at 3:00 in Humanities room 373.

At 3:30, the department of statistics and actuarial science presents Xihong Lin of the University of Michigan, speaking on "Inference in Frailty Measurement Error Models" (Math and Computer room 5158).

Centre Stage Dance has another of its spring performances in the Humanities Theatre tonight at 7:00.

A memorial service will be held tomorrow for John Roorda, who retired in 1996 after a long career in UW's civil engineering department. He died in Vancouver on May 20. Friends can express condolences this evening from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Waterloo Christian Reformed Church on Bearinger Road, and the memorial service will be held there Friday at 2 p.m.

Finally, a couple of corrections:


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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