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Monday, January 10, 2000

  • Looking for 4,120 new students
  • On-line community for UW alumni
  • Workshops offered for TAs
  • In the second week of the term

Progress hinted on WatPark

There could be definite plans soon for the Waterloo Technology Park proposed on UW's largely empty north campus. "We are very close to making an announcement," real estate promoter John Whitney told the Kitchener-Waterloo Record last week. Said Saturday's Record: "Whitney & Company says it is working with users who will occupy 300,000 square feet of space in buildings that should go up this year." UW continues to own the land, and there has been no statement from university officials.

Looking for 4,120 new students

All six faculties are hoping for smaller first-year classes next fall, as admissions targets for September have been set and Ontario's final-year high school students set their sights on universities and colleges.

The campus-wide target is 4,120 full-time first year students when the final counting is done on November 1, says Peter Burroughs, director of admissions in the office of the registrar.

The breakdown: 277 in applied health sciences, 1,117 in arts, 840 in engineering, 281 in environmental studies, 5 in independent studies, 1,000 in mathematics, and 600 in science.

It adds up to the biggest enrolment target UW has ever announced -- at least, Burroughs says he can't remember a bigger one -- but it would still mean a significantly smaller first-year class in the fall of 2000 than UW experienced in September 1999. Last year's target, 4,010 students (not counting those in the English language program in the math faculty), was swept aside by an unexpectedly high rate of acceptances, and Waterloo ended up with 4,608 first-year students.

Engineering, science and environmental studies are all listing the same targets they set a year ago, and hoping to come closer to the target figures this time. (In 1999 engineering ended up with 925 first-year students, science had 728 and ES had 319.)

Mathematics is the faculty that came the closest to its target last fall, aiming for 1,015 students and getting 1,031. It will set the target at an even 1,000 this year. AHS, which was next closest, had 279 students last fall, just over the target of 267, and will aim for 277 this fall. And arts, which is bulging at the seams this year at 1,320 students, will raise its target by more than a tenth from last fall's 1,002 to this fall's 1,117.

Burroughs said Friday that the number of applications for university admission in Ontario is up by 2 per cent from the same time last year, but it's still early in the admissions process and "it can change very rapidly."

Workshops offered for TAs

[Nelsons] Joining the team of TA developers for the teaching resources and continuing education office (TRACE) this year are Torsten Nelson and Maria Nelson (pictured at right). Both are PhD candidates in the computer science department.

The husband-and-wife team are sharing a TA developer position, each working five hours per week at TRACE -- in addition to teaching in the Education Program for Software Professionals and working toward their Certificates in University Teaching.

They'll be conducting the TRACE workshop on Groupwork Strategies on February 16, from noon to 1:30 p.m., one of several winter term workshops open to all UW instructors. Also planned this term:

§ From Presenting to Lecturing, January 20, from noon to 1:30 p.m.

§ Teaching Dossiers, Part 2, February 1 and February 9, from 4 to 5:30 p.m.

§ Supervisory Relationships, March 14, from noon to 1:30 p.m.

Bike accident outside SLC

Police, a fire truck and an ambulance came to the Student Life Centre this morning following an accident on the ring road. A student on a bicycle slid under the wheels of a van turning into the SLC parking area, and has been taken to hospital for a checkup, UW police say.

On-line community for UW alumni -- by Barbara Elve

After years of waiting for a new alumni directory, UW grads are finally being reconnected -- this time, electronically. UW's "alumni on-line community" was launched late in the fall, and so far more than 650 alumni have signed on to the free service which includes a searchable alumni directory and e-mail forwarding for life.

The last print directory, published in 1990, was out of date by the time it went to press, said alumni affairs manager Gwen Graper. Her department knew it was dealing with a very "wired" group of alumni, and decided an e-community was the way to go.

Rejecting a US product adopted by at least one Ontario university, the alumni office looked at models used by the University of Victoria and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology before developing a "homegrown" alumni directory which offers security features found at few other Canadian schools, said Graper.

Rather than the university posting information about its graduates, individuals can decide whether or not to be included in the service. "Alumni are in total control of what personal information is shared with others" on the site, she added. The directory is accessible only to UW's 101,000 alumni -- including 607 faculty and staff -- who must apply to the alumni department for inclusion.

After a few thousand alumni are registered, said Graper, other features will be added to allow searches by city and by employer. Plans are underway to create a business directory for alumni next summer.

E-mail forwarding for life, an additional service for members of the UW alumni e-community, allows alumni to stay in touch with one another even if home or business e-mail addresses change.

Already, response to the on-line initiative has been enthusiastic, Graper said, with advertising for the service planned for the winter edition of the UW Magazine.

Based on a survey of UW alumni conducted last year, the department was confident the e-community concept would help meet the networking needs of alumni for networking, Graper said. The survey reaffirmed that Waterloo's alumni are less interested in social, recreational or family events, but feel strongly about staying connected with colleagues through their faculties and colleges.

Says Graper: "Our goal is connecting with alumni as a resource -- but not just a financial resource." Waterloo looks to its alumni for assistance as co-op contacts, for recruiting new students, and for access and influence in the business and political arenas.

Make sure you get paid

Here's a note from Sandra Hurlburt in the human resources department: "Faculty and staff who started work this month and haven't signed up for payroll and benefits may experience a delay in receiving pay for January 2000. To ensure timely payment, they should contact Human Resources at ext. 3134 as soon as possible."

In the second week of the term

Today's Cotton Candy Day in the Math and Computer building, as the Math Society will be selling the sweet stuff in the third floor lobby (75 cents or two for a dollar). "Get your first pure sugar meal of the millennium!" Stephen Skrzydlo offers (he's social director for MathSoc this term).

The Kitchener Public Library is offering its series of noon-hour speakers again this term, and it kicks off today with a talk on "Canadian Nationalism" by Bob Needham, director of the UW Canadian studies program (12 noon at the KPL main branch downtown).

Co-op students who just got here are already thinking about going to work again in the spring term. The co-op and career services department advises that master co-op records will be available in Needles Hall tomorrow after 10 a.m., and students should pick them up as the first step in the job application process. Also tomorrow, work reports from the fall term are due at 4 p.m. for students in most programs.

And the career development seminar series is resuming. Tomorrow from 10:30 to 12:30 (in Needles Hall room 1020) the topic is "The Career Research Package".

The registration process for campus recreation instructional programs, from lifeguarding to skipping, starts tomorrow. In brief: pick up registration tickets at the Physical Activities Complex (red north) between 8:15 and 11 a.m., then register at the indicated time on Tuesday or Wednesday. Full information is available on the campus rec web site or in the printed "Incredible Guidebook".

Undergraduate marks from the fall term will be available next week, the registrar's office says. Students who are registered full-time this term can pick up their marks on campus; students now on work term, and part-time students, will get their marks by mail.

Finally, news from the University of Toronto, where unionized teaching assistants went on strike Friday afternoon. (They are represented by the Canadian Union of Public Employees.) University officials responded with a lockout. "Once the Union began the strike, the University declared a lockout in order to ensure that all students are treated equally. It would be unfair for some classes to have TAs and others not," said vice-provost (students) Ian Orchard. U of T remains open and classes will be held, Orchard said, telling students, "The strike may mean that your courses will be restructured. You have a right to participate in this process where this is feasible. This will done in class and I encourage you to attend class." Main issue in the labour dispute is money. Three other U of T unions have given strike mandates, and support staff represented by the Steelworkers union are voting today on their first contract.


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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