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Friday, January 31, 2003

  • Board will vote on fee increases
  • Engineers hear big-name speakers
  • International week celebrates cultures
  • Other notes, weekend events
Chris Redmond

Carnaval begins in Québec City

Marking the Chinese new year

The year of the goat is under way -- or is it the year of the ram? Or the sheep? Whatever . . . it's "spring festival" for ethnic Chinese around the world.

Tomorrow's the official date, but there's food today, with a special new year lunch at the University Club (reservations, ext. 3801).

And Saturday night, South Campus Hall will be taken over with celebrations, as the Chinese Students and Scholars Association host a "spring festival party". I'll admit I am not too well-versed in the distinctions among the several "Chinese" organizations on campus, but I'd bet the CSSA can dance, play traditional games and eat authentic delicacies as well as anybody. Tickets: ext. 7129, ext. 5179, or from various other sales representatives.

Board will vote on fee increases

Tuition fees for undergraduates will start at $2,097 per term, beginning this spring, if new rates are approved by the board of governors at its meeting Tuesday. The one-term fee would reach to $3,491 in engineering, and $4,075 in optometry.

Current fee schedule
In addition, co-op students pay a co-op fee which will stay at the present $425 level. (It rose from $400 last fall to $425 this term, the result of a 2001 decision to have students help pay for the new Co-op and Career Services building.)

UW officials are asking the board to approve a 2 per cent tuition fee increase (the maximum allowed under Ontario government rules) for about two-thirds of UW's undergraduates. The other one-third -- those in computer science, engineering, optometry, software engineering, computational mathematics and the accountancy diploma program -- face a 15 per cent increase.

Graduate students' fees will go up 5 per cent in all fields of study except the Master of Accounting program, where the hike is 15 per cent. Full-time grad students will be paying $1,816 per term, except in the MAcc program, where it's $2,576.

For international students, there's a range of increases: 2 per cent in engineering and software engineering, 5 per cent in architecture and all graduate programs, 15 per cent in mathematics, and 10 per cent in everything else.

The board is also being asked to approve a fee that won't go into effect in the spring of 2004. Students who start accountancy studies in arts this fall will be entering second year of the new Bachelor of Accounting and Financial Management a year from now, and the BAFM is intended to be a partial cost-recovery program, with a fee of "$1,121 per 0.5 unit course" to a maximum of $5,000 per term. "This rate is being recommended to the Board now," says the agenda for Tuesday's meeting, "because the students who apply for the provisional first year in Fall 2003 need to be apprised early of the rates for years 2-4."

Fees for another new cost-recovery program are listed in the agenda: $6,667 per term for the new Master of Business, Entrepreneurship and Technology program. Other cost-recovery programs offered at UW -- all at the graduate level -- are in taxation, software engineering, management of technology, and design and manufacturing.

[Group hug]

Play time: Matt Borch, Erika Sedge and Rachel Molnar are featured in "This Is a Play", part of a double-bill of works by Daniel MacIvor to be presented February 5-8 and 12-15 by UW's department of drama. Tickets: 888-4908.

Engineers hear big-name speakers

Two prominent people come to campus today to speak as part of the national conference of Engineers Without Borders. The public is also invited to their lectures, which will be given in the Humanities Theatre.

One is a Progressive Conservative, the other a New Democrat. Speaking at 4 p.m. is Flora MacDonald, former federal minister of external affairs. She'll be followed at 5 p.m. by Stephen Lewis, who has been leader of the Ontario NDP and Canadian ambassador to the United Nations, and is now UN special envoy for HIV/AIDS issues in Africa.

MacDonald will be speaking on "A Life of Public Service", and Lewis will speak on "A Challenge to Make Change".

Tickets for the pair of lectures are available at the Humanities box office (888-4908), priced at $10.

Also open and free to the public during the EWB national conference is a Project Fair on International Development, which runs from 11:00 to 3:00 today in the Davis Centre great hall. Otherwise, conference delegates from across Canada are spending today and tomorrow in "appropriate technology workshops" and other sessions. They'll hear tomorrow morning from David Hughes of Habitat for Humanity, and the event winds up with a Saturday night banquet and a speech by James Orbinski of the organization on which EWB is modelled -- Doctors Without Borders.

International week celebrates cultures

Today's lectures by Flora MacDonald and Stephen Lewis, besides being part of the EWB annual conference, are billed as the first events of UW's first "International Celebration Week".

The event runs from today through February 7. Coordinated by UW's International Student Office, the week was organized by a committee of students, staff and faculty.

"The week was developed to help build awareness of the variety of cultures in the UW community," the organizers say in a statement. "We seek to offer an informative, educational, and entertaining look into unique aspects of many different nationalities, as well as promote internationalization at UW."

Like international weeks at some other institutions, it's timed to coincide with LunarFest, or Chinese New Year. On Monday, the welcoming of the "year of the goat" will take place in the Student Life Centre with activities such as a lion dance, a fashion show and Feng Shui demonstrations.

Booth and poster displays will be featured Tuesday in the great hall of the SLC. Some of the exhibits feature research and study abroad opportunities, as well as Doctors without Borders, Engineers Without Borders, Students for the Exploration and Development of Space and Waterloo Public Research Interest Group projects.

As next week goes on, there will be career sessions about studying and working overseas; a talk by Japanese artist Warabe Aska; international story-telling; academic speakers; the Cultural Caravan, presenting UW ethnic clubs (Thursday in the SLC); and an international night at the Graduate House.

Other notes, weekend events

Things are looking a bit better for co-op employment. As of yesterday, more than 4,000 students have jobs for the current term, out of 4,296 who want them. The employment rate is up to 93.3 per cent, says co-op director Bruce Lumsden. That's some 5 points higher than a couple of weeks ago. It leaves 287 students still unemployed. Employment rates are 95.1 per cent in engineering -- the faculty with the biggest co-op cohort -- and 93.5 per cent in environmental studies, but only 89.0 per cent in mathematics.

The Nortel Networks Institute, based in the Davis Centre, presents a seminar today: "Wireless Revolutions, Perspective and Challenges", by Wen Tong of (naturally) Nortel. "Following a brief review of the fundamentals and enabling technologies," an announcement says, "this talk will focus on the primary drivers that shaped the wireless revolution." It starts at 11 a.m. in Math and Computer room 5158, and everybody is welcome.

The Waterloo Pizza Eating Reading Club will have its first meeting at 12 noon today. The organization is meant "to promote intellectual discussion among graduate students and professors. Once a month, members will meet at the Grad House and have pizza while talking about a book that was read." The first book of the month is Emotional Intelligence in Everyday Life. More information is available from Chris Sarkar, a psychology graduate student, e-mail casarkar@watarts.

Today is the deadline for applications to the school of optometry for September 2003. . . . It's open stage night at the Graduate House, featuring "Free Range Armadillo" from 9:00 tonight. . . . The "Big Chill" party in the Student Life Centre, originally advertised for tonight, has been cancelled, a victim of the Bombshelter's continued closing. . . .

A crew from the Discovery Channel is expected on campus over the weekend to interview anthropology professor Maria Liston about her work on identifying bones and other relics. Liston was featured in the UW Magazine a couple of years ago, in a dramatic story about her reconstruction of the 1813 Battle of Stoney Creek. The weekend filming will be based at the Brubacher House Museum on the north campus.

A group from the staff association will be heading out to Conestogo on Saturday night to enjoy The Caverners ("relive the Beatles") at the Black Forest Inn. And tickets are on sale for yet another staff association social outing -- a trip to the Memorial Auditorium on February 28 to see the Kitchener Rangers hockey team face the Mississauga Ice Dogs. Ticket sales: Luanne McGinley, e-mail lemcginl@uwaterloo.ca.

Sports this weekend: The Warrior figure-skaters host the Waterloo Invitational tomorrow, starting bright and early at 7:30, in the Columbia Icefield. The indoor hockey team has games at 10 a.m. and noon tomorrow in the PAC main gym, then plays two games Sunday at Guelph. The volleyball teams host Windsor on Saturday night in the PAC, with the women playing at 6 p.m. and the men at 8 p.m. The hockey Warriors are at York Saturday night, but come home Sunday to host Brock at 2 p.m. at the Icefield. Away from UW, the basketball teams play at Laurier tomorrow (women at 1 p.m., men at 3 p.m.). The Warrior curling rink, the squash team and the swimmers are all at Brock for tournaments. And the track and field athletes are at the York Invitational tomorrow.

One other athletic note: tryouts start at 10:30 tomorrow morning (at the Columbia Icefield gymnasium) for a planned women's fastpitch team, with league play beginning this fall.


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