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Monday, May 14, 2001

  • Villagers face green week challenge
  • Club will take WatCard soon
  • Web site showcases Canadian education
  • Grains of truth on today's beach

[Little blue video camera]
Vision solution: UW gets some of the credit for the "VisAble VideoTelescope", coming to market this month from Betacom Corporation, which has headquarters in Mississauga and an engineering facility in Waterloo. The device was developed "in cooperation with" optometrists at UW's Centre for Sight Enhancement. It's described as "a hand-held portable video vision aid . . . designed to redress common dimensions of impairment such as reduced visual acuity, reduced contrast sensitivity, reduced scotopic function, and glare sensitivity. These are common features of many ocular conditions."

Villagers face green week challenge

Residents of Village I are taking shorter showers this week -- not because they're spending more time at their computers, but to earn bonus points in the Environmental Awareness Week Green Challenge.

Sponsored by the Federation of Students environment commission, Environmental Awareness Week runs today through May 20, with a program of informal dinner presentations in the V1 café, as well as the challenge to reduce and recycle.

Free lug-a-mugs and "turn off your lights/monitors" stickers will be distributed, and student presentations will focus on endangered species, air quality, transportation, and other environmental issues.

With the support of waste management coordinator Patti Cook, V1 residence life coordinator Jason Coolman, and V1 maintenance and cleaning supervisor Connie Reading -- as well as a don from each of the 16 houses, and the 650 residents of V1 -- the Green Challenge allows students to earn bonus points for various conscientious actions: redeeming a beverage voucher with their lug-a-mug at the V1 café; driving cars less and signing up for the Region of Waterloo's commuter challenge on June 5, 6 and 7; turning off lights and monitors when not in use; taking shorter showers; using a plastic rather than paper cup in the café; joining the Environment Commission; recycling cans, pop containers and glass.

Students from the most energy-efficient house will win a trip to SportsWorld.

Club will take WatCard soon

Staff and faculty members will soon be able to pay the lunch bill at the University Club with their WatCards, as well as with cash, Visa or MasterCard, says the director of food services, Mark Murdoch. His department took over management of the club on May 1.

WatCard and credit cards "will effectively replace the credit privileges that the Club provided" in the years when it was there primarily for dues-paying members, Murdoch said.

"The privileges you currently enjoy from your Club membership will not change," he assured past members in a letter a few days ago. "The good news is that with the elimination of membership fees, you will save $110 per year."

Says the letter: "All regularly appointed full-time or part-time faculty and staff, all retirees and all donors to the campus will be able to use the Club's facilities. New membership accounts will not be set up for these individuals. They will be able to dine in the Club, paying with cash, Visa or MasterCard and, beginning in June, with the WatCard. Associate members, faculty and staff from Wilfrid Laurier University and corporate members will continue to be charged an annual membership fee."

The letter tells members that most of the existing staff at the Club will still be there. "The Club will continue to offer lunch, Monday through Friday, and catering in the evening and on weekends. A schedule of special events is being developed for the year and favourite events such as the Mother's Day buffet, Lobster Boil and wine tastings will continue."

Says Murdoch: "The club is intended to be a higher-end, full-service dining facility serving the needs of departments, faculty, staff, retirees, associate and corporate members. We are not going to actively market the services of the club to students."

Web site showcases Canadian education

A national organization -- the Council of Ministers of Education, Canada (CMEC) -- has launched a web site to promote Canadian education around the world. It's being called education@canada.

"This Web site serves as a gateway to the thousands of individuals who enquire about education in the provinces and territories of Canada each year," said Glenn Hagel, chair of CMEC and Saskatchewan's minister of post-secondary education and skills training. "It is my hope that it will help potential learners, educators, and government officials from every corner of the globe find the education information and opportunities that they seek -- and can take advantage of -- in every corner of Canada."

The site promises educators, prospective students, and governments "a wealth of useful information on the education programs in any particular province or territory, as well as a number of relevant links to national learning organizations". It was first demonstrated in November in Halifax at the 14th Conference of Commonwealth Education Ministers.

Formed in 1967, CMEC is a national voice for education in Canada. Made up of ministers responsible for education in every province and territory, CMEC "works with the broader education community to ensure that the expectations and needs of the Canadian learner are being met and that Canada's education systems remain among the most innovative and flexible in the world".

Student is remembered

Yesterday -- ironically, Mothers' Day -- was the first anniversary of the death of Aileen Proudfoot, a first-year chemical engineering student who drowned in a freak accident on UW's north campus. To mark the day, a group of her family and friends left flowers at the site and visited the maple tree planted in her memory near the Doug Wright Engineering building.

An in memoriam notice appeared Saturday in the Montréal Gazette: "Some people come into our lives and quickly go. Some people move our souls to dance. They awaken us to new understanding with the passing whisper of their wisdom. Some people make the sky more beautiful to gaze upon. They stay in our lives for a while, leave footprints in our hearts, and we are never, ever the same."

Grains of truth on today's beach

I'd better clarify what I said in Friday's Bulletin about the Midnight Sun solar car, which qualified for this summer's American Solar Challenge race last week. I wrote that the team had "missed Thursday's laps" at the qualifying event in Topeka, but then qualified with a 125-mile circuit "yesterday". On Friday, yesterday was Thursday, and the day the team missed competition (because of problems with the battery circuitry) was Wednesday. As for UW's entry being "the only Canadian team" to qualify, in fact it was the only Canadian team to show up in Topeka and make the attempt.

A reception will be held this afternoon to honour the much-honoured Bill Tutte, distinguished professor emeritus in the combinatorics and optimization department. The occasion this time is Tutte's induction into the Order of Canada, announced earlier this year. The reception will take place from 3:30 to 5:00 this afternoon in Math and Computer room 5158.

Tomorrow, across Canada, is census day. Says Statistics Canada: "Don't forget to count yourself in by completing your questionnaire and dropping it in the mail. If you have questions regarding the 2001 Census, call 1 800 591-2001."

"I am planning a community garden," writes environmental studies student Emily Chatten. "It is to be located beside the Columbia Lake Greenhouses." A meeting of people interested in the project will be held at the site, Wednesday at 7 p.m. (I'll say more about this plan in Wednesday's Bulletin.)

Coming on Thursday: a special event at the Kitchener Public Library involving the editors of UW's literary magazine, The New Quarterly. "Editors will read from stories and poems they have selected for publication," a flyer explains, "and give reasons for their choices. Style? Theme? Character? You can ask questions and enter into dialogue too." The event at KPL will start at 7 p.m.

Memo from the graduate studies office: an advisory committee has chosen the winner of this year's Governor General's Gold Medal, representing the top PhD student graduating from UW in the year. The medal goes to Ivan Booth of physics, who received his doctorate at last fall's convocation. It'll be presented at spring convocation next month.

And finally, this note from Nancy Heide in UW's community relations office:

Interested in joining an all-night event for charity? UW is participating in the "Dusk 'till Dawn Relay" to raise money for the Heart and Stroke Foundation. The event will run from Friday, June 22, at 7 p.m. to Saturday, June 23, at 7 a.m. Teams of 10 people will take turns in-line skating, running or walking, competing against other teams in a recreationally competitive format. Each team member is responsible to raise a minimum of $110. In addition to getting some excellent physical activity, you can enjoy events planned which include movies, board games, massage, tug of war, and live entertainment. Dinner, a midnight snack and breakfast is provided.
Interested? Heide can be reached at ext. 3276, e-mail nheide@uwaterloo.ca.

CAR


[UW logo] 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 | Friday's Bulletin
Copyright © 2001 University of Waterloo