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Tuesday, January 30, 2001

  • Finance committee looks at UW's gold
  • Music program hopes for co-op option
  • Arts faculty to promote 'brand'
  • What else is happening around here

Design of the new co-op building

A "consultation" about the planned new co-op building will be held at noontime today, and student comments are wanted.

"We have just received approval from the UW architect to hold a student consultation on the new building," writes Mark Schaan, vice-president (education) of the Federation of Students. "While we have personally invited all of the co-op students working on campus, we would like as many on-campus students to attend as possible." The event starts at 12 noon today in Student Life Centre room 2134.

Says Schaan: "Please be a part of this integral exercise and ensure your voice is heard."

[The cat in the hat]

Finance committee looks at UW's gold

The senate finance committee will meet this morning to hear an update on UW's budget for the current year and some word on the "outlook" for 2001-02, the fiscal year that will begin May 1.

The last budget report came at the October board of governors meeting. At that time, provost Jim Kalbfleisch, just a few weeks from retirement, was predicting a $701,000 deficit in UW's operations for the current year: income of $209.2 million, spending of $209.9 million.

And he predicted interesting times ahead. "Managing the operating budget over the past seven years has been an interesting challenge, Kalbfleisch wrote at the end of his report, "but your next provost may need to be an alchemist."

Alan George (above), acting provost since January 1, will tell the finance committee today how things are going with the search for the philosopher's stone, or at least a way to keep the place solvent and avoid cuts in the coming year. It's too early to have most of the inputs, including information about Ontario government grants and the results of salary negotiations with staff and faculty.

The finance committee is scheduled to meet again February 26, in the hope that there will be more to work on by then. The annual hope is to have an operating budget approved at the April meeting of the board of governors, but often things aren't ready until the June meeting. By that time the fiscal year is already a few weeks old.

Today's meeting of the senate finance committee starts at 9:30 in Needles Hall room 3001.

Music program hopes for co-op option

UW's music program has "all of the challenges of a very small department", and some problems that only money will fix, but "its dedicated and committed faculty and staff have developed and offer a quality program," a program review has found.

The program -- not officially a "department", but a unit based at Conrad Grebel College -- is among the first to complete the internal program review process that UW introduced in 1997. A report on the findings was brought to the university senate this month.

It says the music program "has been designed in the tradition of a liberal arts education, rather than in the tradition of training music performers". UW is one of just five universities, among 41 across Canada that offer a music program, where the degree is a BA rather than a Bachelor of Music.

The review notes that music has just four full-time faculty members, down from six a few years ago. "In the past academic year, 14 sessional teachers were employed." From the review report:

The program has been designed to allow most of its students to take Music in parallel with studies in another program, and does not strive to produce individuals who will be professional musicians. In this manner, it has identified a valuable niche within the University of Waterloo, as well as within the field of music education in the Ontario university system.

The program cut back on its studio program as a result of retirements, but is now in the process of enhancing it. In addition, it has active University, Chamber and Chapel choirs, and an Instrumental Chamber Ensemble. It offers a variety of on-campus and off-campus music performances, and in that regard is one of the most visible public ambassadors for the College and the University.

Despite very heavy teaching and administrative loads, the faculty maintain active and productive scholarly programs, and contribute to scholarship through writing, composing, conducting and participating in a wide range of professional and community events. . . .

The self study report identifies 3 main issues for the program: the reduction of faculty from 6 to 4 between 1991 to 1999, requiring increased use of sessionals, funding problems, given that UW allocates the equivalent of 1 BIU to the program based on enrolment for each student, whereas in most music programs across Canada the equivalent of 1.5 BIU is allocated, reflecting the special costs associated with music programs, and lack of a dedicated performance hall, and physical space which has offices, studios and practice rooms spread among 2 buildings in the College.

The Chair and Academic Dean agree that without some adjustment to the financial arrangements, it will be difficult for the program to be improved significantly.

Music . . . would like to develop a coop option for its students. It believes that such an initiative, along with stronger marketing of the program, will help to attract more high quality students. Initiatives in these directions would be part of a strategy to address the observation of the review team that enrolment patterns "give some cause for concern."

With high teaching loads (6 courses per academic year), the faculty are constrained in the amount of time that can be allocated to scholarship. Appointment of a 5th full-time faculty member would have the benefit of sharing the teaching and administrative load with an another person, leading to more time for scholarly work. . . .

Some of the recommendations can be pursued by the Department and College, and some of them have already started to be implemented. Other recommendations from the review team will only be feasible if the University of Waterloo is able to modify the financial arrangements for the program.

Arts faculty to promote 'brand' -- a release from the UW news bureau

UW's Faculty of Arts will welcome its first branding initiative -- Distinctive & Distinguished, A Celebration of the Arts -- on Wednesday, February 7.

The event, from 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. in the Modern Languages Atrium, will unveil the faculty's new logo, new recruitment initiative and honour the accomplishments of its Distinguished Teachers and recipients of the Premier's Awards of Excellence in Research, and Fellows of the Royal Society Awards.

UW's Faculty of Arts is in the initial stages of an aggressive marketing strategy aimed at attracting Canada's best and brightest. This commemorative event will invoke a sense of identity for the faculty, creating a cohesive atmosphere internally and a sense of loyalty among current and incoming students. A key player within post-secondary education, Waterloo's Faculty of Arts is working on being a step above the rest. . . .

Arts is UW's largest faculty, offering seven PhD, one master of philosophy, 14 masters and 26 bachelor of arts programs in the following disciplines: Accountancy, Anthropology, Canadian Studies, Classical Studies, Drama and Speech Communication, Economics, English, Fine Arts, French, Geography, German, History, Latin, Medieval Studies, Music, Philosophy, Political Science, Psychology, Religious Studies, Russian, Slavic Studies, Social Development Studies, Sociology, Spanish and Women's Studies. Arts has one of Canada's largest distance education programs, and innovative co-op programs in all disciplines, which includes programs administered by UW's four colleges.

Arts has the only French teaching co-op option and the only School of Accountancy in Canada. Arts also offers such innovative programs such as Rhetoric and Professional Writing, Environmental Economics, Honours Arts Applied Studies Co-op, Honours Arts and Business, and Speech Communication. Its Psychology department is world-renowned, with a pioneering PhD program in clinical psychology.

Details soon

  • Fit Fest, this Saturday in the Physical Activities Complex
  • Workshop on Bill 59 (motor vehicle accident insurance) for health care professionals, February 8
  • Third annual Beach Party in the SLC, February 9
  • "Iced in Black", first annual Black Film Festival, February 9-11
  • What else is happening around here

    The senate graduate council will meet at 1:30 in Needles Hall room 3004.

    The career development seminar series continues with a session on "the work finding package" at 10:30 this morning. Tomorrow it's "interview skills, basics" at 5:30 and "interview skills, questions" at 6:30. The career resource centre in Needles Hall has the details.

    Kickstarts, describing itself as "a young, energetic local startup founded by four recent UW grads", will hold an information session today (4:30 to 6:30) at Ground Zero restaurant in the Student Life Centre. Says an announcement: "The main topic of discussion will be the the Kickstarts Venture Accelerator program and the benefits of entering a high-tech venture idea into the Kickstarts Elite Venture Competition. The competition is currently underway and closes February 28. In addition, Kickstarts will be informing interested students about current employment opportunities, as the company is expanding and is looking for talented individuals to contribute to their growth. Kickstarts would therefore like to invite students, potential and current competitors, and interested job seekers" to tonight's event.

    Huron Campus Ministry (the Christian Reformed chaplaincy at UW and nearby campuses) and the Institute for Christian Studies present a talk tonight under the title "Technology and Culture: How Does Our Faith Relate?" The speaker is Bob Hudspith, of the engineering and society program at McMaster University. His talk starts at 5:00, in Needles Hall room 3004; discussion will follow.

    It will be "José Martí Night" on campus, with a Cuban film and a visit from Rogerio Santana, consul-general of Cuba in this part of the world. The flick is "Lucia", described as "a film (not a documentary) about the struggle of Cuban women during colonialism, US neo-colonialism, and after the Cuban revolution. This movie will be followed by discussion about the movie and Cuban patriot José Martí." The event starts at 7:00 in the Waterloo Public Interest Research Group office, room 2139 of the Student Life Centre.

    And check the calendar today for two major talks that will be given tomorrow, both in the Theatre of the Arts:

    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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