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Friday, March 8, 2002

  • Cabinet minister brings millions
  • Funding for architecture confirmed
  • A night (or two) in the Black Forest
  • Events for today and the weekend
Chris Redmond

Early observations of International Women's Day

Voting extended

Faculty members will have another week to vote on three proposed articles for the Memorandum of Agreement, dealing with program closings, financial exigency and faculty layoffs.

Online voting was to end at noon today, but a memo going out from the university secretariat says some voters have had "interface difficulties", and just 11 per cent of faculty members have cast ballots so far. Votes will now be accepted until 12 noon next Friday, March 15.

Cabinet minister brings millions

Andy Mitchell -- a junior minister in Agriculture Canada who's responsible for the Canada-Ontario Infrastructure Program -- will visit campus this morning to drop off some money.

Officially described as "a major funding announcement involving Industry Canada", the statement this morning is expected to be about UW's share of $200 million in Canada-wide funding that was announced in the federal budget in December. It's a one-time allocation to help universities with the so-called "indirect" or "overhead" costs of research -- libraries, utilities and salaries that make research possible but aren't covered by the usual research grants.

Universities have been pushing Ottawa for several years to make a contribution to those indirect costs. UW's president, David Johnston, is among leaders who have pointed out that the current system penalizes a university's budget for its research success: the more grants it receives, the more expenses there are that the regular operating budget has to cover.

Universities welcomed the allocation when finance minister Paul Martin announced it in December, saying that a one-time grant was a step towards regular annual funding. But UW provost Amit Chakma warned that the money will come "with strings attached", and that it's a one-time lump sum, so it can't be poured into the regular budget. He said Waterloo will likely receive several million dollars of the total, and should be able to spend it on "infrastructure" items -- for example, setting up labs for newly arrived professors.

This week, as Mitchell's visit was planned, Chakma said it's too soon to say exactly how UW will spend its share of the money. "We have not decided on the specific allocations yet," he said by e-mail. "It is one-time money and will be treated as such -- it will not be used for ongoing base budget allocation.

"We'll try to fund projects that can be treated as one-time. Some of the funds will be used to cover costs related to SuperBuild projects, library, IT infrastructure, research office, etc. Some will be used in the faculties to cover their indirect cost needs."

Mitchell's announcement this morning is scheduled for 10:15 in the Davis Centre lounge. Officials from Wilfrid Laurier University will also be on hand, as Mitchell will bring the grants for both UW and WLU.

Student mourned

University police said yesterday that the woman who died in the Biology II building Tuesday morning was Stephanie Anne Chisholm-Nelson, a third-year chemistry student.

After making contact with family members, a police spokesman said funeral arrangements are not settled yet; the funeral will likely be held in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, with a memorial service at UW to come later.

The death is not thought to be the result of "foul play".

Funding for architecture confirmed -- from the UW news bureau

Jim Flaherty, Ontario minister of finance and minister responsible for SuperBuild, yesterday announced $4.1 million towards the building of the new home for the UW school of architecture in the heart of downtown Cambridge's most historic area.

"I am absolutely delighted that, through SuperBuild, the Ontario government is participating in this exciting project," Flaherty said. "It's a true public-private partnership that will provide Waterloo's school of architecture with a new home worthy of its stature, and trigger significant new business and investment opportunities in Cambridge's city centre."

"The university supported relocating the school of architecture from the start," said UW president David Johnston. "We recognized that the project offered tremendous opportunities in terms of reinvigorating this community and raising the architecture school's profile and prestige."

"Many people have worked tirelessly to bring this project forward; it is truly a community effort." said Gerry Martiniuk, MPP for Cambridge. "The new school of architecture will create jobs and local business opportunities, and breathe new life and excitement into one of southwestern Ontario's most historic areas."

[Brick] The announcement was made at the site of an old textile factory (right) on Melville Street, next to the Grand River in the historic Galt city centre. The $27.2-million project -- scheduled for completion by 2003 -- will provide a new, three-level, 85,000-square-foot facility that will accommodate about 400 architecture students, faculty and staff.

"On behalf of my other partners, I want to extend thanks to the people and the City of Cambridge for the tremendous support they've provided for this project," said Tom Watson, who heads up the private-sector consortium of local business leaders, called the Cambridge Business Consortium. "Our goal here is to create a world-class home for one of North America's leading schools of architecture, in a way that complements and enhances our historic surroundings and the local community," added Watson.

Through the Millennium Partnerships initiative, SuperBuild is investing $40 million in strategic infrastructure in Waterloo Region. The relocation of the school of architecture also meets the province's Smart Growth priorities by maximizing the efficient use of existing infrastructure, renewing the environment and enhancing the growth and development of downtown urban cores.

The project costs are to be shared by four partners -- a private-sector consortium of local business leaders ($12.7 million); the City of Cambridge ($6.25 million); SuperBuild ($4.1 million); and Industry Canada ($4.1 million).

At the time of the announcement, the first three partners were still awaiting word from Industry Canada as to whether federal funding for the project will be made available.

A night (or two) in the Black Forest

It happens again this weekend: the annual Black Forest coffee house, a tradition at St. Paul's United College that's now thirty years old.

"We have a great variety of acts," says Julie Bryson, who has been co-ordinating auditions. "We have a host of musical performers from within the College and the Waterloo community." Acts will include an assortment of musical styles, poetry readings, dance and even a magic show. "We are also extremely happy that local artist Matt Osborne will be gracing our stage on the Friday night."

"What's a coffee house without great food?" says Rosanne Kelly, this year's food co-ordinator. "We will be selling Fair Trade coffee and a host of other beverages and sweets," continues Kelly. "There will also be free cake each night, in honour of our 30th anniversary." The first Black Forest took place in the summer of 1972, and was started because of the number of accomplished musicians living at St. Paul's. It's now a social highlight as well as a deep-rooted custom, although the preferred spelling seems to vary from year to year -- one word or two?

"Black Forest is an event that brings the whole St. Paul's community together," says Ryan McNally, promotions co-ordinator, "We are very excited to be celebrating the 30th anniversary of Blackforest. It's a tradition that has been successfully passed down through generations of St. Paul's students.

"As usual we are inviting the whole UW community to attend, and we are extending as special invitation to all St. Paul's alumni and supporters to come and join us in the celebrations."

Black Forest will be held in MacKirdy Hall at the college, "which we transform into a coffeehouse complete with couches and a full stage," says Bryson. The festivities take place tonight and again tomorrow night, starting at 8 p.m. Tickets are $5 for one night or $7 for both, at the door.

Aboriginal event tonight

Renison College will be hosting the second annual Aboriginal awareness event tonight from 6 to 10 p.m. The theme is "First Nations: Expressions and Impressions," with the keynote speaker John Somosi, a Métis from Saskatchewan.

The Weejeendimin Native Resource Centre is preparing a "traditional feast" that will be served and there will be drumming and dancing.

The event is organized by members of the Native Student Association, social work programs at Renison and Wilfrid Laurier University, the Weejeendimin Centre and Anishnabeg Outreach Centre to raise money for an aboriginal scholarship.

Tickets are $10 in advance -- -- 884-4404 ext. 635 -- or $12 at the door.

Events for today and the weekend

"Plan Modification Week" winds up today -- the opportunity for students to change fields of study, transfer to architecture, add a minor to their program or make similar changes. Transfer forms are available from department offices, from the registrar's office in Needles Hall, or on-line.

Two events today wind up the observation of International Women's Week. At 12 noon, there's a session (in the multipurpose room of the Student Life Centre) addressing "Sexism on Campus?", with a question mark. Speakers are Jeanne Kay Guelke of UW's geography department, who chairs the "status of women and inclusivity" committee of the faculty association, and Rozena Maart of the Biko Institute. Then this evening, "Estrogenia", described as an "art show and concert", begins at 7 p.m. at Ground Zero restaurant, also in the SLC.

The speaker is an English professor, but you wouldn't know it from the title of the talk she's giving today: "Membrane and Cytoplasm -- Competing Views of the Cell". Jeanne Fahnestock of the University of Maryland is the speaker, at 2:30 p.m. in Humanities room 373. "Professor Fahnestock," says Randy Harris of UW's English department, "is an important argumentation scholar, a pioneering rhetorician of science, and author of the brilliant Rhetorical Figures for Scientific Argumentation. This should be a real treat."

Also at 2:30, the Waterloo Public Interest Research Group presents "The True Cost of Peace: An Insider's View of Post-Taliban Afghanistan". The speaker is Asif Rahimi, who promises "to unveil Afghanistan's reality to Canadians. Come hear what's really going on." Location: the multipurpose room of the Student Life Centre.

And a third event at 2:30: the department of psychology presents "The Inside Story of Addictions: Control of Drug Effects by Interoceptive Cues", a talk by Shep Siegel of McMaster University. Location: PAS room 2083.

Wines from Mission Hill are featured at a special dinner at the University Club this evening -- price, $75 per person, including a Pinot, a Sauvignon, a Cabernet, a Chardonnay and a Merlot, as well as poached pears and roasted salmon. Information: ext. 3801.

Two Christian events are planned for this evening:

Both events start at 7:00 tonight.

The staff association, through its social committee, is sending a group to see the Kitchener Rangers' home game at the Kitchener Memorial Auditorium tonight. Last-minute information should be available from Luanne McGinley at ext. 3497.

True or false: tomorrow brings the Bernoulli Trials mathematics contest. True, actually; the event starts at 11:00 tomorrow in Math and Computer room 4059.

Tomorrow night, the DaCapo Chamber Choir, based at Conrad Grebel University College and directed by Leonard Enns, will give a concert at St. John the Evangelist church in downtown Kitchener (8:00). The title is "Romance and Revelry", and music planned includes Grieg, Healey Willan and others. Tickets are available at the door at $12, students $8.

Sunday evening, Wilfrid Laurier University presents French movie night -- "Vidocq" (historical), "15 août" (comedy) and "Les rivières pourpres" (thriller), all made just last year. The event runs from 7 p.m. to something like two o'clock in the morning at WLU's Maureen Forrester Recital Hall; admission is $12, students $10.

Advance warning: there will be no running water in most of the UW Place complex from 8 a.m. to noon on Monday, as the plant operations department fixes a leak in the main supply line.



March 8, 1994: Noting International Women's Day, the Daily Bulletin reports that 15.8 per cent of UW's 829 full-time faculty members are women. March 8, 2000: The first Canadian Undergraduate Technology Conference begins.

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