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Tour through the decades: the 1960s

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University of Waterloo | Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
Posted April 24, 2001
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Thursday, May 23, 1968

  • Building opens after today's convocation
  • In the centre, the holy of holies
  • Labour, optometrists join campaign
  • The talk of the campus

Tuesday, April 24, 2001

Today, with not a whole lot happening on campus, the Daily Bulletin looks back 33 years. This retrospective on an exciting time in the university's life is the second in a series of historical Daily Bulletins that will continue through the spring and summer.

Most campus buildings will have fire drills today, the safety office warns. In general, buildings on the west side of the campus are scheduled for alarms in the morning, with science, math and engineering buildings following in the afternoon.

The Waterloo Advisory Council, representing employers, continues its spring meeting today, mostly in Needles Hall. The lunchtime speaker is Rick Haldenby, director of the school of architecture -- likely talking about the school's projected move to Cambridge.

Reminder: spring term tuition fees are due today, and late fees start tomorrow.

Electrical power will be shut off in the Modern Languages building from 5 to 8 p.m. tonight, for work on the new elevator. "Computer equipment should be shut down in an orderly fashion," the plant operations department suggests.

Health services will be closed all day tomorrow.

Tomorrow brings a noon-hour session on "Talking and Negotiating with Your Teenager", sponsored by the Employee Assistance Program, led by psychologist Barry Benness and starting at 12 noon in Math and Computer room 4021.

Also tomorrow: the football Warriors will play an inter-squad game starting at 3:30 in University Stadium, as they wind up their spring training camp. Everyone is welcome to watch.

Building opens after today's convocation

UW's new $7 million Mathematics and Computer building will be officially opened this afternoon, following a special math convocation ceremony in the Theatre of the Arts. Ontario premier John Robarts is on campus to open the building along with president Gerry Hagey and chancellor Ira Needles.

Irving Kaplansky, distinguished mathematician from the University of Chicago, is also at UW today and will give the convocation address after receiving an honorary degree. In his remarks, he is expected to say something about the growing influence of computers on the field of mathematics.

A total of 169 degrees will be awarded this afternoon -- five honorary degrees, 120 at the BMath level, 40 master's degrees in math and four PhDs.

Besides Kaplansky, recipients of honorary degrees today will be William Gartrell, math teacher at Fort William Collegiate Institute; Richard Brauer of Harvard University; Calvin Gotlieb of the University of Toronto; and the premier. The ceremony will start at 2 p.m.

After convocation, the academic procession will cross campus from the Modern Languages building to the new Math and Computer building for the opening ceremonies.

Tomorrow's second session of UW's 16th Convocation will be held at 2 p.m. in the Kitchener Memorial Auditorium.

[Note the wide low cars]
The Math and Computer building under construction, late last year, with the seven-storey Dana Porter Library in the background

In the centre, the holy of holies

The new Math and Computer building (right) is designed for a student population of some 1,200, including 300 graduate students. It includes study space, classrooms, faculty offices, graduate student quarters and seminar rooms, as well as space for extensive computing equipment ranging from five IBM 1620 computers to 130 keypunches.

"You walk up its staircase between imposing oak hand rails and the temple dwarfs you," says Jim Nagel, now of the Kitchener-Waterloo Record but better known on campus as past editor of the Chevron. He describes the new structure. "It swallows you into its antiseptic terrazzo hallways. You find yourself looking through soundproof glass down into the holy of holies: huge, hygienic, dust-free, specially air-conditioned. The chief god itself blinks back at you."

That "chief god" is the IBM System 360 Model 75 computer that recently came to campus -- the biggest and fastest computer in Canada, capable of 1,000,000 [Photo actually taken 1973] additions per second. It can operate three printers churning out a total of 3,300 lines of print each minute. The "holy of holies" that houses the machine is a two-storey, 5,000-square-foot room (left) that was originally to be tiled in yellow but was finally built with dramatic red floor and walls.

The physical plant and planning department, the department of university extension and the Centre for Continuing Studies in Marketing are temporarily occupying offices on the sixth floor of the new building until the faculty of math needs the space.

An Engineering, Math and Science Library is to be housed on the fourth floor, and is expected to be finished next month, so that the library can move out of its space in the crowded Engineering II building.

The Ontario government is paying 95 per cent of the building's cost, with the other 5 per cent coming from contributions to the Tenth Anniversary Fund.

Labour, optometrists join campaign

The Tenth Anniversary Fund has reached the $3,000,000 mark -- with "many good prospects, special interest groups and foundations still to be canvassed", says vice-president (university development) Ted Batke.

He said organized labour in the Kitchener-Waterloo area has reacted favourably to a plan to support the Fund on the basis of one-half cent per hour, 20 cents per week for five years. This could produce an additional $500,000.

Canadian optometrists are organizing to support the Fund and have set a minimum target of $250,000. The Intra-University faculty and staff campaign has passed the $100,000 mark.

The talk of the campus

The university senate meets this afternoon, and will discuss a proposal to offer four physics courses by correspondence. They would be the first correspondence courses offered by UW, and would be aimed chiefly at high school science teachers. Rather than printed material, the courses will be based on taped lectures.

Staff and faculty members will no longer be allowed to make personal purchases through the purchasing department, the library and the physical plant and planning department, says UW treasurer Bruce Gellatly. "This change will not apply," he added, "to purchases made on a cash basis through the normal service of the bookstore."

The Canada Council has provided a grant of $48,000 to be used to buy library materials to support UW programs in the faculty of arts. UW's grant was the eighth largest among 31 grants given to institutions across Canada.

The computing centre will offer an introductory course on the Fortran programming language on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday afternoons from 4 to 5 p.m., starting June 18.

The board of governors has awarded a construction contract totalling $4,750,000 for construction of new residences west of the Student Village.


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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