[University of Waterloo]


Waterloo, Ontario, Canada | 519-888-4567 | Tour through the decades: the 1950s
Yesterday | Past days
Historical Bulletins
Search past Bulletins
UWinfo | Text
About the Bulletin
Mail to the editor

Friday, January 24, 1958

  • Associate Faculties buy 200-acre campus
  • Needles expects 'University of Waterloo'
  • Lutheran chapel may stand on hilltop
  • Seminary board supports growth of college

Tuesday, May 29, 2001

We pause today and look back some 43 years, as our occasional series of historical Daily Bulletins continues. Today's story stars UW's founding president, Gerry Hagey, now commemorated with a permanent display in the lobby of the J. G. Hagey Hall of the Humanities.

Thousands of students across Ontario will find out today, or tomorrow at latest, whether they've been admitted to UW. Most offers of admission went into the mail yesterday, although a few thousand were sent as early as April. Peter Burroughs, director of admissions, said yesterday he doesn't have statistics for this year yet, but last year UW sent more than 14,000 offers of admission for 4,000 places in the first-year class.

The pension and benefits committee meets nearly all day today (8:30 to 2:30, Needles Hall room 3004) to hear reports from the various companies that manage the pension fund investments.

A "tech talk" by Matt Labarge of Microsoft is scheduled for 5:30 this afternoon in Math and Computer room 2066. Title: "Oh My God, They Killed Clippy! And Other Ways Microsoft is Evolving the Productivity Suite". Microsoft's new Office XP is due out on Thursday.

Tomorrow: open house at the Federation of Students office, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Luke Fusco of Wilfrid Laurier University speaking on "Negotiation and Mediation in the Workplace and in Life", 12 noon, Davis Centre room 1302.

Associate Faculties buy 200-acre campus

Acquisition of a new campus for Waterloo College Associate Faculties was announced today by college president Gerry Hagey. He said a $15 million expansion program is planned, which will involve the construction of 19 new buildings by 1965. The first one is coming this year.

The program will be a major step in the college's march towards its goal of becoming a degree-granting university, Hagey said.

The site for the new campus is half a mile west of the present Waterloo College buildings, on the outskirts of Waterloo where Dearborn Street comes to an end. The 200-acre campus site was previously set aside for industrial development.

The college has bought it from Major Holdings, a local land development firm headed by Abram Wiebe. The site was previously a farm operated by the Schweitzer family. A rectangular piece of land, it is bounded by the extensions of Columbia Street, Westmount Boulevard, and Seagram Drive, and the CNR railway tracks to Elmira.

A survey of the projected enrolment at Waterloo shows 3,736 students are expected to be studying at the college in eight years. Enrolment now is 701.

The first building planned for the new site is a chemistry and chemical engineering building. Tenders are ready to be let for the three-storey structure, Hagey said, adding that its laboratories and classrooms should be ready for use by the time students register this fall.

By September 1959, four more buildings are planned: a physics and mathematics building, a library, a cafeteria and a 100-student residence.

To help finance the expansion program, the college expects support from both government and industry, and a $2 million public fund-raising campaign will be launched this fall, the president said.

Gerry Hagey shows off a preliminary plan for the new campus
It is no secret that Hagey was initially opposed to the purchase of the new campus, which has been discussed by the board of governors over the past several weeks. At a meeting in November, both he and the chairman of the board, Ira Needles, were sceptical of a request for a commitment to building a new campus.

Support for the idea of a land purchase chiefly came from one of the younger board members, Carl Pollock of Kitchener's Electrohome Ltd., and from the Academic Advisory Committee, consisting of academic department heads and led by Les Emery, principal of the Associate Faculties. It is Emery who has been negotiating the land purchase from Major Holdings.

Needles expects 'University of Waterloo'

Ira Needles, chairman of the board of the Associate Faculties, said today that the college will apply for a charter as a degree-granting university when the time is right. That would mean an end to the present arrangement with the University of Western Ontario by which graduates from Waterloo College receive Western degrees.

There is no official plan about the name of the new institution, but engineering professor Ted Batke, a member of the Academic Advisory Committee, has suggested that it might be called simply the University of Waterloo.

The university would include the present Waterloo College as a faculty of arts, with other units developing from the Associate Faculties that now exist to teach science and engineering.

Creation of a university would be a big step forward for an institution that two years ago included only a 47-year-old church-related arts college and the attached Lutheran seminary. Since then the Associate Faculties have begun teaching both science and engineering.

And in today's statement, Needles -- who is president of B. F. Goodrich Canada, one of the largest employers in Kitchener-Waterloo -- suggested that other colleges might become part of a new university, perhaps with sponsorship from other churches. A leading candidate might be St. Jerome's College, a Roman Catholic institution affiliated with the University of Ottawa, which is currently housed at a six-year-old campus on the southern outskirts of Kitchener.

Lutheran chapel may stand on hilltop

President Gerry Hagey has suggested that a feature of the new campus might be a Lutheran chapel attached to the seminary and occupying the highest spot, just west of the Schweitzer farmhouse.

A prominent building in that spot would represent the "symbolic and historical role of the Lutheran Church" in the creation of the new university, Hagey says.

"There is good reason to believe that churches other than the Lutheran Church will wish to become associated with the University of Waterloo," he says, but there should be a "dominant" role for Lutheran institutions. The president added that a Lutheran chapel, "if Waterloo College wished to construct one", could easily be used for services "for students of all denominations".

Construction of a chapel on the natural knoll, the highest point on the new campus, would make it necessary to cut down a venerable maple tree that grows there, as well as remnants of an apple orchard behind the farmhouse.

Seminary board supports growth of college

The Evangelical Lutheran Seminary, affiliated with Waterloo College, definitely will not move to the new campus, says A. J. Baetz, secretary of the seminary board.

He announced today, in a letter addressed to Lutheran clergy across Canada, that the board has officially endorsed relocation of the arts college as long as the site is "mutually acceptable", but that the seminary would stay behind at Albert Street and might expand into the space now occupied by the college itself.

There are "distinct advantages" to the seminary being physically separate from the planned university, Baetz says, just as there is "much to be gained by our church college in being territorially closely related to the facilities provided to the university through government grants".

The seminary was founded by the Evangelical Lutheran Synod in 1911, on a five-acre site donated by Waterloo industrialist Charles Mueller. An arts college, now Waterloo College, was added in 1924.


[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 | Yesterday's Bulletin
Copyright © 2001 University of Waterloo