[University of Waterloo]


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Tuesday, February 15, 2005

  • No leader for grads; other news
  • Happening now, happening soon
  • It's already the middle of February
Chris Redmond

Canada's flag, 40 years ago today

[Three squeezed into two spaces]

Sliding neatly into place, three cars did a fine imitation of curling rocks yesterday morning in the icebound parking lot at Conrad Grebel University College. Paul Penner of Grebel's staff took the photo.

No leader for grads; other news

The deadline for nominations came Friday, as the Graduate Student Association was prepared to elect its leadership for 2005-06, and, well . . . there was no last-minute rush. "No nominations were received for the positions of GSA president or vice-president (corporate affairs)," says a memo from Jason Grove, chemical engineering student and chief returning officer for the GSA. "A second call for nominations will be issued in a few weeks." He adds that one nomination was received for each of two other executive positions, "and the following are therefore acclaimed: Jennifer Hunter (physics/vision science) as vice-president (operations), and Beatrice Orchard (history) as vice-president (student affairs). Jennifer is continuing in her current position."

[Feds election logo] Meanwhile, at least there are candidates for the leadership of UW's undergraduate students -- that is, for president and three vice-presidents of the Federation of Students. Voting, which happens primarily online, opened this morning at 8:00 and continues through Thursday evening. (There will also be daytime polling stations in a number of campus buildings.) In addition to choosing Feds executives, and filling seats on the university senate and students' council, undergraduates are being asked to answer two referendum questions. One deals with a proposed dental insurance plan; the other, a refundable $100 orientation fee to be paid by first-year students.

The faculty association has sent out "an invitation to faculty members and professional librarians concerned with child care issues", to this effect: "Several faculty members have come to the Faculty Association registering their concern with issues related to balancing their work load with their family commitments, especially with respect to child care. In order to gauge the level of concern and develop possible solutions, the Status of Women and Equity Committee (SWEC) is organizing a consultation luncheon. If you are interested in expressing your views on child care, you are invited to attend our luncheon on Thursday, March 3, in the Laurel Room, South Campus Hall, at noon. During the luncheon we will be addressing the following questions. What challenges do you face balancing your family and career? What problems do you have associated with child care? What kinds of solutions would you recommend? Is there something the University could do that would make it easier for you to meet your child care needs?" Reservations for the luncheon are due online by February 24.

UW's Technology Transfer and Licensing Office recently subscribed to "Flintbox", a new Canadian web-based software tool designed to link the TTLO and UW researchers, says a memo from TTLO director Jerry Gray. He says Flintbox "is designed to build communities of interest around research undertaken by universities and other organizations and to provide an effective means to support commercialization of research. In the near future a Flintbox pamphlet will be made available through faculty offices and departments across campus. This information and a link to Flintbox will also be available on the TTLO website."


Ursula Franklin, noted metallurgical engineer at the University of Toronto, will give this year's Hagey Lecture on Wednesday evening, March 2, in the Humanities Theatre. Free tickets are available from the Humanities box office. Details of a student seminar that Franklin will give the next day have not been announced yet.

Happening now, happening soon

"Uncompromising Courage" is the title of a group art show that is making a stop at UW today and tomorrow as part of its tour. "This exhibit," organizers say, "portrays the manifestation of good and evil in the context of a modern human atrocity: the brutal persecution against Falun Gong led by the Chinese Communist dictator." The exhibition includes 40 original paintings by some 20 artists: "Some of them personally experienced the torture depicted, and one is still in jail. Such painful human memories have been transformed into the basis for artistic expression. . . . Such works are not meant to please, but rather to move people toward greater wisdom and understanding." The show is open from 9:00 to 7:00 in the multipurpose room of the Student Life Centre, with an opening ceremony at 2:00. It moves on to Wilfrid Laurier University for Thursday and Friday.

Roy Romanow, former premier of Saskatchewan and the head of the Royal Commission on the Future of Health Care in Canada, will deliver the Sweeney Lecture at St. Jerome's University on Friday night (7:30, Siegfried Hall). His presentation, "Health Care and Canadian Values", addresses the need to secure Canada's public health-care system and sustain those values that he says have come to epitomize Canadian society. The lecture is sponsored by the St. Jerome's Centre for Catholic Experience. "We are expecting a big crowd," writes Carol Persin of the centre, noting that the lecture will be carried on video in two nearby lecture halls. A New Democratic member of Saskatchewan's legislature for 34 years, and premier from 1991 to 2001, he led the Royal Commission on health care for the federal government the following year, writing in its final report that the Canadian medicare system "demonstrates that as a community we can accomplish so much more than we could ever dream of doing as individuals."

Cold though the winter may be, "it promises to heat up on February 24," I'm assured, [Burning arrow] "when the Waterloo Fire Department takes to the stage in the 1st annual Hot Night in the City." It's a fund-raising event for Easter Seals, and among the volunteer organizers is Carol Knipe in UW's mechanical engineering department. She writes: "This exciting event will be held at Federation Hall, where Waterloo fire fighters will model the season's hottest trends to benefit kids with physical disabilities while 600 enthusiastic women look on. Doors open at 7 p.m." Tickets are $25, and they're in "limited" supply, organizers say. On campus, tickets are available from Knipe at ext. 5197.

Also: Arriscraft Lectures continue with a talk Thursday night (at the Architecture building in Cambridge) by Christopher Sharples of Sharples Holden Pasquarelli. . . . The Hagey Bonspiel is set for February 26 at the Ayr Curling Club. . . . International Celebration Week starts February 28. . . .

"Shadow Days" will bring high school students to UW's faculty of engineering March 1 and 2. . . . The school of social work at Renison College will host a conference March 4 on "Canada's Response to International Crisis". . . . SCRUBS, the association of science-and-business students, will hold a conference March 12 on "Keys for Success: From Science to Business". . . .

Baden-Powell Week celebration sponsored by UW Rover Crew, 10:00 to 12:30, Student Life Centre lower level. Pioneering display and catapult challenge; group photo of Scouting and Guiding members in uniform 12:30.

Circuits seminar: Kenneth Wagner and Yuriy Greshischev, PMC Sierra, Kanata, "Power Considerations in IC Design", 10 a.m., CEIT room 3142.

Career workshop: "Successfully Negotiating Job Offers", 3:30, Tatham Centre room 1208. Tomorrow: "Career Decision Making", 10:30 a.m., TC 1208.

Waterloo Engineers in Toronto networking and pub night, 6:00, Jolly Miller Tavern, information online.

Walrus Magazine "evening of discussion and socializing", 7 to 9 p.m., Vault Lounge, King and Erb Streets.

Stress Relaxation Series begins: "Autogenic Relaxation", Wednesday 12 noon, Math and Computer room 5158, no charge (CDs for sale).

'Personal Tax Strategies' seminar sponsored by Waterloo County Education Credit Union, Wednesday 12:15, Davis Centre room 1302, ' reservations ext. 3574.

'Music of the Baroque' concert by Barbara Kaplanek (flute) and Cynthia Hiebert (harpsichord), Wednesday 12:30, Conrad Grebel University College chapel.

Installfest -- "get help installing and configuring open source software on your computer" -- sponsored by Computer Science Club and other groups, Wednesday 3 to 9 p.m., Davis Centre lounge, details online.

Author John Gould (shortlisted for 2003 Giller Prize) reads from his book Kilter: 55 Fictions, Wednesday 4 p.m., St. Jerome's University room 3014.

'Fitness Explosion' free fitness class Wednesday 5:30, Columbia Icefield gyms, no need to preregister.

It's already the middle of February

Apparently I made a small mistake when I wrote yesterday that March break for the local school boards would be March 14-18 (in contrast with the schedule for Toronto's boards, which are taking the following week). In addition to those five days, I'm told that Friday, March 11, will also be a day off school for local pupils and teachers.

The recent blood donor clinic in the Student Life Centre was a success, according to a happy memo from Sharron Cairns of Canadian Blood Services, back at her Guelph office. "A remarkable 308 units of blood were collected," she writes. "Since every donation can help save or improve the lives of up to 3 people, your generosity will help over 920 Canadians who need blood or blood products. . . . A special thank-you goes out to the 80 first-time donors we welcomed." There's a continuing competition between engineering and mathematics to produce the most donors, and math did better this time, but engineering continues to lead since the challenge was launched two years ago. Next blood donor clinic at UW: March 28 through April 1.

"The Research Council of Norway is coordinating several bilateral funding programs to enhance research cooperation between Norwegian and Canadian institutions for visiting researchers, post-doctoral candidates, and, in special cases, doctoral students," says a memo from UW's research office. "Applications for all programs must be submitted through a Norwegian institution by March 1, 2005. Funding is disbursed as a grant to the relevant institution in Norway. The University of Waterloo has three agreements with Norwegian institutions (University of Bergen, University of Oslo and NTNU Norwegian University of Science and Technology)." More information is online, and Drew Knight, director of international programs, has the lines open (ext. 2288).

A while back, I wrote about the 5 per cent increase that will affect residence fees as of September 1, saying that "an apartment-style room" in Columbia Lake Village (a.k.a. the townhouses) was going up to $997 a month. I was asked for some clarification, and Gail Clarke of the housing and residences office has provided it: the figure is the monthly rent for "a two-bedroom townhome", which I think would be in the northern section of the townhouse complex, accessible off the new stretch of Westmount Road.

The UW-published literary magazine The New Quarterly has proudly announced that Erin Noteboom, Kitchener writer and part-time editor at TNQ, was recently awarded the Acorn-Plantos prize for her book of poetry Ghost Maps: Poems for Carl Hruska. The Acorn-Plantos Award for People's Poetry, established in 1987, honours the memory and work of Canadian poets Milton Acorn and Ted Plantos. Ghost Maps is a collection of poems drawn from the stories of a World War II infantryman that depict the chilling but ordinary details of war. Noteboom met her subject while researching for a novel set during the winter fighting in Belgium in 1944, and forged a close friendship with him. She later abandoned the novel and turned it into this award-winning collection. The book also won a CBC literary award before its release in 2003 and was shortlisted for the Pat Lowther award. Says Noteboom: "I like poetry that you don't have to have an English degree to understand."

Barry Warner of the UW biology department (and director of the Wetlands Research Centre), visited the city of Morelia, in Mexico's Michoacan state, earlier this month to receive an award: Mexico's National Wetlands Award. It was presented by the federal minister of the environment, Alberto Cardenas Jimenez, and the governor of Michoacan, Lazaro Cardenas Batel, "in recognition of his contributions to research and teaching on wetlands science in Mexico and his collaborations between Mexico and Canada".

Matt Mains, a fifth-year math student, won the Swimmer of the Meet title for the fourth year in a row at the OUA Championships in Toronto over the weekend. With wins in all three of the breaststroke events and the 200 IM, he was the only quadruple gold winner and also had the highest ranked swim of 955.5 points on the Swim Canada performance ranking charts for his 1:01.87 time in the 100 breaststroke. Mains will now move on to the national championships at the Commonwealth Games pool in Edmonton at the end of the month. In the weekend's meet, the Warrior men ranked third out of 13 teams competing; the Warrior women were 11th of 12.

Alice Clair, a library assistant whose UW career began in June 1973, retired officially on February 1. . . . Roger Downer, former UW biology professor and vice-president who is now president of Ireland's University of Limerick, visited campus yesterday with a delegation of Limerick administrators to meet with people in several UW departments. . . . A memorial event for Val O'Donovan, local industrialist and former chancellor of UW, will be held Sunday from 2 to 6 p.m. at the Galt Country Club (e-mail celebration@odonovan.ca for details). . . .

And . . . among those who had a romantic Valentine's Day yesterday was Pat McDonald of the UW registrar's office, who got back from a meeting to find her desk laden with flowers, a card -- and a bunch of balloons with "My Husband Loves Me" printed on each one. [Heart]


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