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Tuesday, March 12, 2002

  • Co-op students of the year
  • Universities welcome innovation plan
  • What the white papers are about
  • Tell me what's a-happening
Editor:
Chris Redmond
credmond@uwaterloo.ca

Birthday of Canada's Simon Newcomb


Campus welcomes high school visitors

If the campus seems unusually crowded and busy today, that's because it's Campus Day, bringing thousands of future students and their parents here for tours and information sessions. Campus Day starting points are the Visitors Centre in South Campus Hall and the great hall of the Student Life Centre. Campus tours run from 10:00 to 4:00, the faculties and colleges have their own exhibits and tours and information sessions, and visitors are welcome just about everywhere. Special sessions include "Financing Your University Education" (1:15, Needles Hall room 3001); "The 2003 Double Cohort" (1:15, Humanities Theatre); and "Experience It! Co-operative Education and Career Services" (2:15, Humanities Theatre).

[Each with certificate]

Perin Ruttonsha (left) and Kristine Tambling pose -- with their student of the year certificates -- beside Bruce Lumsden, director of co-op education and career services.

Co-op students of the year

Each year two co-op students are presented with the UW Co-op Student of the Year Award. Students are nominated by their employers or field coordinators or can nominate themselves. The winners of the 2001 Co-op Students of the Year Award are Kristine Tambling and Perin Ruttonsha.

Tambling will graduate this spring from recreation and leisure studies, having completed an option in business and speech communications. She has completed work terms as a communications assistant at the Canadian Mental Health Association; an international work term in Guyana at the Guyana Red Cross Society; an on-line community development officer at Charity.ca and the NRG group; a coordinator of health promotions at the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario; and a recreation therapy student at the Scarborough Grace Hospital.

Tambling also volunteers as a student career assistant at the Career Resource Center in Needles Hall and works part-time on campus at both the Visitors Center and the Bombshelter.

Ruttonsha, a 3B applied studies fine arts student, one of the first nominees from this department, has completed work terms with Volunteer Canada, Perennial Inc., Autumn Leaf Performance and the Ontario Science Centre.

Ruttonsha is active in music and drama, and is in specializing in sculpture. Liz Hong-Farrell, Ruttonsha's supervisor at Volunteer Canada, says, "Perin demonstrated management skills that went far beyond what is expected of a co-op student."

Both students received $100 from CECS in recognition of their accomplishments.

[Broad surface of solar panels]

Midnight Sun VI was the centrepiece in the Student Life Centre on Thursday afternoon as students and visitors admired the solar car that crossed the United States and Australia last year. The event also provided the launch of Midnight Sun VII, soon to be built by a new student team.

Universities welcome innovation plan

Leaders of Canada's universities say they welcome the two federal white papers -- the "innovation agenda" -- made public last month.

One of the papers comes from Industry Canada, the other from Human Resources Development. Together, the government says, they provide a proposed "strategy" that "outlines the factors that will drive economic growth and social development over the next decade. The papers highlight the goals, milestones and targets that will improve innovation and skills and learning in Canada."

The government now plans meetings with "a wide range of partners and stakeholders . . . a national dialogue . . . expert roundtables . . . best practice workshops . . . regional and sectoral meetings, culminating in a National Summit this fall, where further ideas, opportunities and partnerships can be identified."

Universities are happy to be part of that, says a statement from the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada.

"We commend the federal government for establishing this dialogue to articulate a long-term vision of a skilled population and an innovative economy, and Canada's universities look forward to actively participating in the process," said AUCC president Robert J. Giroux. "These papers provide a framework for the continuation of the significant initiatives the government has already undertaken in these areas and set the stage for future activities."

Achieving Excellence, which outlines the government's innovation agenda, "emphasizes the important role played by universities in research and innovation across Canada", says an AUCC news release. "It highlights a number of issues key to building on existing successes, including funding the indirect costs of research, enhancing efforts to commercialize the results of university research, attracting the best and brightest international students, and the need to increase efforts to attract, retain, and nurture quality researchers, graduate students, and faculty."

The skills and learning agenda outlined in the human resources paper, Knowledge Matters, points out the increasing importance of university and other postsecondary education to Canadians entering the workforce and the need for greater access to university education, especially for aboriginal Canadians and people with disabilities, AUCC says. "Important issues such as student financial assistance and the physical and institutional capacity of universities to absorb greater numbers of students are outlined in the consultation paper. Both papers recognize the important role universities play in providing the skills and conducting the research necessary for Canadians to thrive in the international knowledge economy."

Giroux again: "Universities play important teaching, research, and community service functions, and they are eager to contribute to reaching the goals set out by the federal government. The upcoming consultation process will provide an opportunity to find ways to ensure that Canada has the healthy universities it needs in order to move forward, and AUCC will be fully engaged in the process."

What the white papers are about -- from a government news release

"Canada must become more innovative if we are to continue to build on our economic and social foundation," said Minister Rock. "We need to find ways to create knowledge and bring it to market more quickly, secure a skilled workforce, support our communities as magnets for investment and make our business and regulatory policies attractive while protecting our quality of life. If Canada is to be successful globally, innovation must be everybody's business."

[Rock in sharp focus]

Allan Rock -- minister of industry and, according to news reports, aspirant to the prime minister's job when it comes open -- introduces the innovation white papers in a news conference at a high-tech company in Kanata, outside Ottawa.

"Skills and learning are the foundation of Canada's Innovation Strategy. It is our knowledge and skills that lead to new concepts and original products and services," said Minister Stewart. "This strategy is about equipping all Canadians with the tools they need to participate in Canada's workplace because a country with a workforce that knows a lot, creates a lot. Their knowledge is now the currency of our economy and the factor that will ensure our continued social development."

Knowledge Matters: Skills and Learning for Canadians calls for a collaborative approach between all sectors of society to ensure Canadians have the tools they need to participate in Canada's workplace, thereby keeping Canada economically strong and socially sound. The paper outlines a series of national goals and milestones for children and youth, post-secondary education, the adult labour force, and immigration. Those goals are:

The paper dealing with economic growth, entitled Achieving Excellence: Investing in People, Knowledge and Opportunity, examines the role of innovation in the Canadian economy and proposes goals, targets and federal priorities in four key areas:

Tell me what's a-happening

Today: Tomorrow: And here's a reminder that "Lesson"s and "Passages", a double exhibition by Toronto photographer Ho Tam, is winding up in the East Campus Hall gallery. Thursday will be the last day of the show.

CAR

TODAY IN UW HISTORY

March 12, 1969: Members of the Radical Student Movement conduct a "study-in" at the Arts Library to draw attention to inadequate library budgets. March 12, 1986: UW president Doug Wright leads a protest march from campus to city hall to draw attention to the state of university financing.

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