- Staff 'satisfied', with reservations
- Friday concert begins 'diversity' effort
- Student remembered, and other notes
- Chris Redmond
- Communications and Public Affairs
Career fair today
More than 230 employers and over 3,000 students and alumni of the area’s four post-secondary institutions will meet and talk about careers and employment opportunities at the 13th annual Career Fair today at RIM Park in Waterloo. The event is said to be the largest post-secondary career fair of its kind in Canada.
Co-sponsored by Conestoga College, the University of Guelph, UW and Wilfrid Laurier University, the fair gives students and alumni the opportunity to network with employer representatives and obtain career information. For employers, it is a cost-efficient way of contacting students and alumni of four institutions at once.
The event runs from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and is free to anyone from the four institutions with a student or alumni ID card. There is shuttle-bus service from each campus to the RIM Park site (buses leave from the Humanities building every half hour starting at 9:30).
Many economic sectors will be represented, including financial services, advanced manufacturing, information technology, retail, aerospace, telecommunications, health care, food and hospitality services,community and social services, and government. A sample of employers includes ACNielsen Canada, Geomatrix Consultants, Grey Bruce Health Services, Hydro One, IBM Canada, Maple Leaf Foods, Shell Canada, TELUS, and Toyota.
Link of the day
When and where
Tony the Tiger promotes Kellogg's cereal at Brubakers cafeteria, Student Life Centre, 9:00 to 11:00.
Fund-raising barbecue organized by Udai to support its book collection drive for India, today and Thursday 11:30 to 3:30, Biology green.
Career workshops: "Law School Bound" 12:00, "Teaching English Abroad" 1:30, "Preparing for the LSAT" 3:00, all in Tatham Centre room 1208, registration online.
Retirees Association annual wine and cheese 3 to 5 p.m., University Club.
Smarter Health seminar: Brian Forster, OntarioMD, "Engaging Physicians in Ontario's E-Health Strategy", 3 p.m., Davis Centre room 1302, details and live webcast online.
Novelist and playwright Margaret Sweatman reads from her work 4 p.m., St. Jerome's University room 2017.
Clubs Days Thursday and Friday 10:00 to 3:00, Student Life Centre.
Campus recreation garage sale: old equipment, weights, golf clubs, T-shirts, Thursday 11:00 to 2:00, Physical Activities Complex "Red North" entrance.
Computational mathematics pizza welcome event Thursday 4 p.m., Davis Centre room 1301; visit with classmates, ask questions; RSVP email@example.com.
Arriscraft lecture, school of architecture: Peter Busby, Vancouver architect, "Evolution in Sustainable Design, from Buildings to Communities", Thursday 7 p.m., Architecture lecture hall.
Ontario Universities Fair Friday 9 to 7, Saturday and Sunday 10 to 5, Metro Toronto Convention Centre, more information online.
East Asian Festival at Renison College: literary and storytelling event Friday 12 noon, Culture Day Saturday 11:00 to 2:00, cocktail reception and silent auction Saturday 7 to 10 p.m., details online.
Arthur Carty, former UW dean and science advisor to prime minister of Canada, speaks on "The Changing Face of Science", inaugurating annual Arthur J. Carty Lectureship, Friday 4 p.m., CEIT room 1015.
Warrior Weekend activities Friday and Saturday nights, Student Life Centre, including movies, crafts, dance lessons, Quiz Bowl, details online.
Homecoming Saturday: reunions for alumni, "Blue's Clues" for kids, barbecue, Warrior football, women's volleyball tournament, fun run; keynote lecture by Stephen Lewis on Saturday night is sold out, but tickets available for live video feed; details and tickets online.
All-ages party at Federation Hall Saturday 10 p.m. to 2 a.m., dancing and socializing for all UW students and their of-age guests. Preceded by a thank-you barbecue, 9 p.m., for orientation leaders.
Linda Bluhm, human resources department, retirement reception October 12, 4 to 6 p.m., South Campus Hall, RSVP by October 2 to ext 3-3573.
On this week’s list from the human resources department:
• Development assistant, dean of mathematics, USG 5
• Staff relations coordinator, human resources, USG 7-10
• Administrative/secretarial assistant, secretariat, USG 5/6
Longer descriptions are available on the HR web site.
Getting fresh: Daniel Delattre of engineering computing buys a basket of tomatoes from Sandy Chuchmach, a dietician with health services, at last week's "farm market" organized by volunteers and the food services department. The market will be repeated today, and Wednesdays until the end of October, from 9:00 to 1:30 in the Environmental Studies I courtyard. Photo by Barbara Elve.
Staff 'satisfied', with reservations
UW staff members report "a high level" of satisfaction, according to survey findings summarized in the new issue of Staff News. That's the newsletter published by UW's staff association for its members. Here, by permission, is the text of the article from the September issue:
Association reps wanted
Says Carrie Howells, president-elect of the staff association: "The UWSA Department/Area Representatives are looking for more representatives to join their committee. This committee meets once a month to exchange ideas and to improve the lines of communication between the Association and the staff. During the lunch hour meetings, important staff issues are discussed (benefits, staff training, compensation, health and safety concerns, etc.) and information about current UWSA initiatives is shared with the representatives. Please consider being a part of this important group. There are many areas on campus that need more representation: IST, CECS, the Registrar's Office, the Library, Development & Alumni Affairs, Central Stores, Counselling Services, Health Services, LT3, the School of Accountancy, Mechanical Engineering, the School of Optometry, and many others. The current list of representatives can be found online. For more information or to become a rep today, contact the Staff Association Office, located in DC 3603, ext. 3-3566, firstname.lastname@example.org."
"The UWSA completed a survey to measure staff levels of satisfaction with various aspects of employment at the University of Waterloo. The survey looked at five basic themes: Satisfaction with UW; Personal Job Satisfaction; Communication; Representation; and Compensation. The results of the survey were then examined in aggregate and by looking at demographic breakdowns by years of employment and USG levels. Typically those at the higher USG levels were on average more satisfied with the five theme areas. Still the overall results indicated a high level of overall satisfaction with the University as a place to work, and across the five theme areas.
"The response rate to the survey was very good, with 31.5% of eligible UW staff responding to the survey (560 of 1780). Further the breakdowns of the respondents by USG level and years of service were close to the real demographics of UW. This indicates that results have a high level of reliability.
"For the direct question: Overall, I am satisfied with the university as a place to work. 85% agreed with the statement and only 6% disagreed. 9% were neutral. In other words only 6 out of 100 employees were dissatisfied with UW as a place to work.
"Still a fairly high number of staff indicated having 'given serious thought to leaving the University' with 26% Agreeing, or 1 in 4 staff thinking about outside career options. As one might expect the thought of leaving was strongest in newer employees who usually are younger employees with a greater flexibility of lifestyle, and willingness to accept change. Still 3 out of 4 staff seem to indicate they are content to continue working at UW — although not necessarily in their current jobs.
"While there is a strong level of satisfaction with UW as a workplace, there seems to be strong perception that morale at UW is poor. Only 39% indicated agreement with the statement that Morale in the University is Good, and 49% agreed that Morale in my department is Good. This when set against the fact that 85% agreed that 'I am Interested in my Job' and 76% agreed that 'My Supervisor Seems to Care About me as a Person,' provides a confused picture about the UW work environment. Many individual respondents seemed to indicate their own personal work environment was 'good' but that other people had experienced problems. This also seems to indicate that problems at UW are the exception, but that staff perceive the resolution of these problems are not handled very well. Responses to statements related to issues of fairness, workload, compensation and recognition of achievement all indicate a mediocre satisfaction level.
"On the benefits side, staff indicated a fair level of satisfaction with the range of benefits available to them, but indicated less satisfaction with the delivery of those benefits. Very few staff indicated dissatisfaction with any particular benefit.
"The most basic one line summary of the survey would be that: 'UW staff are satisfied with their level of discontent.' A more in-depth analysis of the survey is still needed, and then taking the analyzed feedback to Staff Relations Committee for discussion."
Friday concert begins 'diversity' effort
This year’s Diversity Campaign, backed by the Federation of Students and the UW student life office, will kick off this weekend with a double event: a Friday night concert and Saturday night’s lecture by celebrity Stephen Lewis.
Last year's kickoff concert “was very popular and successful,” says Rick Theis of the student life office, noting that the bands will include iLLScarlett, the Pocket Dwellers, and Joel Plaskett and the Emergency. The event takes place at Federation Hall, and doors open at 9:00 Friday night. It’s free for UW students: “Students must show a valid WatCard to be admitted . . . students wanting to attend should plan to arrive early as space in Fed Hall is limited.”
Saturday night brings the Lewis lecture (7:00 in the Humanities Theatre, co-sponsored by alumni affairs as part of Homecoming). Currently a United Nations envoy for HIV/AIDS issues in Africa, Lewis will answer questions after his remarks and will sign copies of his book A Race Against Time, which will be available for purchase from the UW bookstore.
Tickets for the Lewis talk are sold out, but there will be an overflow room with live video in Arts Lecture Hall 113; admission there is free for students, $2 for others as space allows. “We will also make a podcast of the event available for download,” Theis adds.
After this weekend, the Diversity Campaign “will follow up the kickoff with events throughout the term, including programming aimed at discussion of various diversity topics including Islamophobia, cultural stereotyping, homophobia, gender bias and other issues relevant to both the student and university community experience. Much of the content for these programs will also be recorded and podcast for download.”
He says this year's campaign will be also featuring “regular photo/audio profiles of various students, faculty and staff throughout the year — the profiles are designed to provide a perspective of UW's diversity from a first-person perspective — in other words, to encourage the campus to see diversity issues through the eyes of individuals on campus, allowing people to view multiple perspectives throughout each term.”
Information on the campaign, including upcoming events, RSS subscriptions to the site's news, the profiles, and much more can be found on the diversity web site.
Student remembered, and other notes
Robert Baranowicz (left), a fourth-year student in political science, died September 20, "peacefully in his sleep, after a brief illness". He was 23. A funeral service was held Sunday at St. Anthony Daniel Roman Catholic Church in Kitchener. An outpouring of tributes on the funeral web site indicates how much he was loved by friends and co-workers (he was a lifeguard at two local pools), as well as by his family — parents Czeslaw and Susie Baranowicz of Kitchener, and brother Matthew. Memorial donations to St. John Ambulance are suggested by the family.
There's a detour for pedestrians along the west side of the ring road, where roof work on Environmental Studies II has produced construction fences and a boardwalk to keep passers-by safe. And now work is about to start a little north of that site, at the main entrance of Needles Hall. "Plant operations will be making temporary repairs," says Peter Fulcher of that department."Ceramic tiles will be removed and replaced in a small area. The entrance will be accessible, but use caution."
There's a workshop tomorrow under the title "The Spirit of Why Not? in Course Design", led by James Skidmore of the Germanic and Slavic studies department. I think I was misled by its subtitle — "Using UW-ACE to Teach On-Campus and Distance Education Students Simultaneously" — into writing yesterday that the event was organized by UW-ACE. In fact, it's a presentation of LT3, the Centre for Learning and Teaching Through Technology. "This presentation," an LT3 summary says, "will demonstrate how Prof. Skidmore developed two cultural history courses —GER 271/272 — in UW-ACE with the express intention of teaching them simultaneously as on-campus and Distance Education courses. The benefits of this approach for improving student learning and for strengthening both on-campus and DE instruction will be discussed, and Prof. Skidmore will demonstrate how UW–ACE enables this enterprise. Negative aspects, though few, will also be examined." The event starts at 12:15 tomorrow in the Flex lab in the Dana Porter Library; registration is online.
The international spouses group will get started for this term with a visit tomorrow to UW's Earth Sciences Museum. Says organizer Nancy Matthews: "See dinosaur bones, gems and minerals, and special exhibits on groundwater and the Great Lakes. Meet at 12:45 p.m. at Columbia Lake Village community centre (off Columbia between Westmount and Fischer-Hallman) for a ride, or meet us directly at the museum by 1:10 p.m., at the latest. The museum is located in the Centre for Environmental and Information Technology (CEIT) building, near the math and chemistry buildings. This free tour will begin promptly at 1:15. Part of the tour will be outdoors in the Rock Garden, so please dress for the weather. Also, if you need a ride and are bringing children, you must have a carseat. All spouses of international students or professors are most welcome, no matter where they live in Kitchener-Waterloo." More information about the group: e-mail email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Summer is over (although you might have wondered yesterday, when the campus temperature got up to 17.8 Celsius under bright blue skies) and the UW weather station has issued its usual seasonal summary. "The summer was split pretty evenly between an initial warm half and a latter cool half," station coordinator Frank Seglenieks writes. "Those really warm days and nights at the beginning of August were the turning point, with the temperature never again going above 30 for the rest of the summer. Overall the average daytime high temperatures were pretty much bang on the long term average of 24.2 C. However, in a trend that has been seen around the world in the past decade, the nighttime low temperatures were 2 degrees above average. In the 9 summers that we have recorded temperature at the University of Waterloo weather station, all of them have shown above-average nighttime low temperatures. This rise is generally attributed to a greater amount of water vapour and clouds in the air. This water vapour acts like a blanket during the night that doesn't let heat escape by radiating longwave energy back towards the earth's surface. In a strange anomaly caused by the fact that we use Environment Canada data 1970 to 2000 to determine the 'average' range of precipitation, we saw the highest amount of precipitation of any summer in the 8 year history of the UW weather station, but it was still considered an average month. This just shows how dry it has been in recent summers."