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Friday, January 13, 2006

  • UW welcomes PM's funding promise
  • UW Shop ready for facelift
  • Reminder: students can elect senators
  • Renison celebrates Founders' Day
Chris Redmond

Why Friday the 13th is unlucky

[Faces intent on front of classroom]

Video games are a growing presence in educational technology, which is why Dennis Dyack, president of Silicon Knights -- Canada's largest independent game development company -- was sponsored jointly by the UW Gamers group and the Centre for Learning and Teaching Through Technology when he spoke at UW on Wednesday. Dyack noted his company's emphasis on creating content-driven entertainment, which he contrasted with some firms' primary interest in technology -- and he called for more interdisciplinary programs in universities, producing well-rounded graduates who can contribute to the gaming industry.

UW welcomes PM's funding promise -- a statement issued by the university yesterday

The University of Waterloo welcomes today's announcement of federal investments in research and innovation. At the Markham Civic Centre this morning, Prime Minister Paul Martin pledged $180 million in new support for four research and development initiatives if his government is re-elected.

The commitment includes $50 million in grants to each of Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics and the University of Waterloo Institute for Quantum Computing, and $80 million in National Research Council funding to the National Institute for Convergent Technologies to be established in Markham and the National Centre for Biomedical Innovation, associated with the MaRS discovery district in downtown Toronto.

"Innovation is at the heart of any truly 21st century plan to boost Canadian competitiveness and economic growth," said David Johnston, President of the University of Waterloo. "Support for these kinds of fundamental research and development initiatives advances the national dream of building a smart and highly prosperous nation. We urge all federal parties to engage in this important dialogue."

Reaction and coverage

Perimeter | TRRA | U of Toronto | York U | Markham | Globe | Star
Through the Toronto Region Research Alliance, the University of Waterloo advanced proposals for funding to the leaders of all four federal parties, both for the Institute for Quantum Computing, and the National Institute for Convergent Technologies, in which its researchers are involved. In an open letter to all party leaders in December, TRRA outlined the importance of each project, and asked the leaders to articulate how they will address the innovation challenges and opportunities facing the broader Toronto region.

Funding for Perimeter Institute and IQC will help them to become world-leading centres for quantum information processing, one of the world's most promising transformative technologies. Perimeter Institute does cutting-edge research in theoretical physics, while IQC works on translating theory into engineering design practice.

  • Four national parties answer questionnaire on education issues
  • 'Think Education' election web site created by student organization | Candidates' debates
  • Conestoga College working to buy University Heights school
  • Postage rates going up Monday
  • Ontario minimum wage rising to $7.75
  • Report on 'the role of libraries in e-learning' in Canadian universities
  • Accounting students 'Battle for CA$H' this weekend
  • 'Good practice' in supervising graduate students
  • Principal of Queen's wants allegations against her investigated
  • 'I will teach you to be rich: Your college is not a technical school'
  • Director of the Institute for Quantum Computing, Raymond Laflamme, praised the level of investment outlined in today's announcement. "Sustaining federal investments in research and development are crucial to our ability to build new knowledge for the benefit of all Canadians," he said.

    The proposed National Institute for Convergent Technologies in Markham will involve the NRC, the town of Markham, York University, University of Waterloo, the Sunnybrook Hospital and Women's College Health Sciences Centre, and private sector firms including IBM Canada Ltd. and sanofi pasteur Limited. The new Institute will bring together researchers and industry leaders from the biomedical and information technology sectors to conduct research where these technologies converge and commercialize their discoveries into marketable products with an emphasis on new medical devices.

    This facility, and the National Centre for Biomedical Innovation -- a partnership between NRC and the University of Toronto -- will be the first NRC Institutes in the Greater Toronto Area.

    UW Shop ready for facelift

    The UW Shop in South Campus Hall will be open for one more week -- with a 25-per-cent-off sale on everything -- before closing for renovations.

    "In preparations for the University's 50th anniversary in 2007, the UWShop will be closed January 23 through to March 5," writes Susy Kustra of retail services. "The last major renovation at South Campus Hall took place in 1994 when the concourse was enclosed. The Bookstore recently completed a mini renovation, as did TechWorx, which included opening an entrance in the wall dividing UW Shop and Techworx."

    She says plans for the shop renovation "were based in part on feedback from students. Through a series of focus groups, students expressed the desire for the UWShop to be welcoming, comfortable and to have a current look. The renovation plans include several of the students' recommendations such as new carpeting, a stereo system and additional change rooms. A key improvement will be relocating the customer service and checkout desk to improve customer flow through the store. This move will create a dedicated service area that will be beneficial to students and staff alike."

    [UW rugby shirt] The shop, which grew out of the UW bookstore, is the place to buy "Proud UW Mom" mugs, umbrellas with the UW logo, teddy bears, keyrings, greeting cards, backpacks and of course clothing. And it's the place to get T-shirts made for UW departments and groups. "Although the store will be closed starting January 23 through to March 5," Kustra says, "a selection of UW crested clothing and giftware will be available for purchase in TechWorx. UW Shop will be available throughout the renovation period and may be reached at their regular extensions and email addresses. For custom order inquiries, please contact Beth Alemany at ext 5446. For general inquiries, please call ext. 3914 or email uwshop@uwaterloo.ca."

    Clubs Days continue today 10 to 4, Student Life Centre.

    Canadian Undergraduate Technology Conference continues today and tomorrow at Sheraton Parkway Toronto North; keynote speech this morning by Mike Lazaridis, Research In Motion founder and chancellor of UW.

    Warrior Weekend with activities in the Student Life Centre: tonight "Crash" and "Just Like Heaven" as well as "duct tape contest" and self-defence lessons; Saturday night "Shrek" plus colouring contest and JeoparDisney; details online.

    Sports this weekend: basketball vs. Royal Military College tonight, Queen's tomorrow (women at 6 p.m., men 8 p.m. both days). Men's hockey at Windsor tonight, Windsor at UW tomorrow (7:30, Icefield). Women's hockey at Western tonight, Windsor tomorrow. Men's volleyball hosting York tomorrow 2 p.m. (PAC). Women's volleyball at Western tomorrow. Track and field at the Windsor Can-Am Invitational today.

    'Murderball' screening 8 p.m. Humanities Theatre, admission free, sponsored by One Waterloo diversity project.

    Matt York plays the Bombshelter pub (with Melissa Larkin) tonight, doors open 9:00.

    Utilities shutdown (electrical power, heating, ventilation) in Physics, Rod Coutts Hall, Davis CIM wing, Saturday 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

    Banff Festival of Mountain Films Saturday 7 p.m., Humanities Theatre.

    Author Edna Staebler 100th birthday celebration Sunday 2 to 4 p.m., senate and board room, Wilfrid Laurier University.

    All-candidates' meeting for Kitchener-Waterloo riding, Tuesday 12 noon, Student Life Centre.

    Presidents' Colloquium on Teaching and Learning featuring George Kuh, Indiana University, creator of National Survey of Student Engagement, Tuesday 4 p.m., Humanities Theatre, details online.

    Elaine Carpenter, parking services, retirement reception Friday, January 20, 4 to 5:3, University Club, RSVP ext. 3630.

    Reminder: students can elect senators

    The university secretariat has invited nominations for the following undergraduate student seats on the UW Senate:

    One student elected by/from the full-time or part-time undergraduate students in the Faculty of Arts, one from the Faculty of Environmental Studies or Department of Independent Studies, and one from the Faculty of Science, term from May 1, 2006 to April 30, 2008.

    One student elected by/from the full-time or part-time undergraduate students in the Faculty of Engineering, and one from the Faculty of Mathematics, term from May 1, 2006 to April 30, 2007.

    One student elected by/from the full-time or part-time undergraduate students at large, term from May 1, 2006 to April 30, 2008, and one from the same group, term from May 1, 2006 to April 30, 2007.

    Nomination forms are available online or from the Federation of Students office. At least five nominators are required. Completed nomination forms should be submitted to the Chief Returning Officer, Secretariat, NH 3060 no later than 3:30 p.m., Friday, January 20. Elections, if necessary, will coincide with the annual Federation of Students' elections (February 14-16).

    Renison celebrates Founders' Day

    Renison College will mark its 47th anniversary on Sunday with the annual Founders' Day celebration. Activities begin with Evensong (the Anglican worship service for afternoon) and Convocation at the Church of St. John the Evangelist, 23 Water Street, Kitchener, starting at 3:00.

    During the Convocation, the college has announced, Renison will bestow its highest honour, Honorary Senior Fellow, on Rt. Rev. Bruce Howe, eleventh Bishop of the Diocese of Huron, and John Yuen, independent businessman, Scarborough. "Renison College is also pleased to acknowledge Dr. Jennifer Ashworth, retired professor of philosophy, University of Waterloo, and Mr. Larry Lamb, Environmental Studies faculty, as Fellows of the College."

    [Renison in clericals] The college was named in honour of Bishop Robert John Renison, Metropolitan of Ontario, who died in 1957
    The keynote address at the service will be given by Bishop Howe. A tea reception will follow the service in the Upper Parish Hall. Founders' Day will conclude with a 6:30 p.m. dinner with invited guests at the Great Hall in Renison's Luxton Building.

    Renison College was established as an affiliated college of UW on January 14, 1959. "Since our founding," the college says, "as a separately incorporated institution with its own publicly-accountable Board of Governors, Renison's emphasis on offering a first-class undergraduate education in a supportive environment has remained constant. Our academic and residential community provides an enriching environment in which students develop intellectual skills applicable to diverse career and life situations.

    "Over the years, our academic offerings and programs have grown to meet the needs of students, including mature students, single parents, community volunteers, and the traditional full-time students in search of a degree. Renison College affords the advantages of a small and nurturing community within the university environment."


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