Wednesday, February 27, 2008

  • Athletics director retiring in August
  • Labour board confirms union outcome
  • Peace studies program marks 30 years
  • Editor:
  • Chris Redmond
  • Communications and Public Affairs

Link of the day

Stop the bullying

When and where

Random Leaps Book Sale outside UW bookstore, South Campus Hall, continuing today and tomorrow.

Career workshops: "Successfully Negotiating Job Offers" 10:30, "Work Search Strategies Special Session for International Students" 4:30, both in Tatham Centre room 1208, registration online.

Chemical engineering department presents the 2008 Park M. Reilly Lecture: Sirish Shah, University of Alberta, “The New Role of Digital Automation Systems in Process Monitoring”, 11:30 a.m., Doug Wright Engineering room 2529.

Centre for International Governance Innovation presents Carin Holroyd, CIGI senior fellow, “Science and Technology Policies, National Competitiveness, and the Information Divide” 11:45 a.m., 57 Erb Street West.

Free noon concert: Duo Concertante (violin and piano) 12:30, Conrad Grebel University College chapel.

Café-rencontre du département d’études françaises: Nicole Brossard, poete et romancière, 14h30, Tatham Centre salle 2218.

[Pickoski]Lois Pickoski, information systems and technology, social gathering as she retires after 40 years working at UW, 3:00, Math and Computer room 5158.

Smarter Health Seminar: Richard Kim, University of Western Ontario, “Personalized Medicine, Today and Tomorrow” 3:00, Davis Centre room 1302.

Larry Smith, department of economics, "How the World Will Try to Stop You and Your Idea", 4:30, Rod Coutts Hall room 307, sponsored by Laurel Centre for Social Entrepreneurship, all welcome.

Arts career night with alumni from Research In Motion, Gowlings Law Firm, Joy Apparel and others, 6:00 to 8:00, pizza provided, e-mail slcoordinator@artsmail.

Women In Engineering presents Diane Freeman (civil engineering 1992), “Living an Enriched Life Through a Non-Traditional Journey”, Thursday 11:30, Rod Coutts Hall room 305, registration online.

Centre for Business, Entrepreneurship and Technology presents Mark Chamberlain, Trivaris Ltd., “Gold Mine: Seek and Build”, Thursday 12:00 noon, 295 Hagey Boulevard.

Master of Business, Entrepreneurship and Technology program information session for future students, Thursday 4:00, 295 Hagey Boulevard suite 240.

History Society 25th annual MacKinnon Dinner, with guest speaker Karolyn Smardz Frost, UW graduate and Governor General's Award winner, Friday 6 p.m., Ali Baba Steakhouse, tickets $20 ($30 non-students) at Humanities room 122.

Chilly Dog Run: run or walk two loops around the ring road, then chili in the Student Life Centre, with guest speaker, Saturday 10:30 a.m., registration (online) $10.

International Women’s Week speaker: Judy Rebick, National Action Committee on the Status of Women, presented by Waterloo Public Interest Research Group and Women’s Centre, Monday 7:30, Arts Lecture Hall room 116, admission free.

International Women’s Day dinner: “Celebrate women mentoring women,” Thursday, March 6, 5:00, University Club. Speakers: Emerance Baker (aboriginal services coordinator) and Susan Tighe (civil and environmental engineering); tickets $30 at Humanities box office.

44th annual used book sale sponsored by Canadian Federation of University Women, April 18-19, First United Church, King and William Streets; book dropoff information online.

Positions available

On this week’s list from the human resources department:

• Administrative assistant, associate provost (academic and student affairs), USG 8
• Liaison librarian, library, USG 8-13
• Director of athletics and recreational services, USG 17
• WatPD instructional support coordinator, associate provost (academic and student affairs), USG 8
• Customer relations and admissions assistant, housing and residences, USG 4

Longer descriptions are available on the HR web site.

One click away

IT World reports on UW's VeloCity incubator project • Better forewarn Pizza Pizza
UW news release: weather station holds annual contest
Architecture head seeks to bring Biennale to Waterloo Region
Feds consider volunteer-staffed Walksafe (Imprint)
CP story on Bill Gates visit to Waterloo • and from CanWest • Photos posted on Flickr
Newly elected Federation leaders 'speak at last' (Imprint)
UW researcher's Microsoft grant for work in 'semantic technologies'
Can the BlackBerry win the 'cool' stakes? (Star)
Balsillie's 'trio of top-calibre institutions'
Science magazine scolds Canada for 'dismal' support of science
'Universities fight to stop first-year flame-outs'

Athletics director retiring in August

[McCrae]One of UW's top student services jobs is coming open, according to today's Positions Available listing, and the news is official that Judy McCrae (left), director of athletics and recreational services, will retire this summer.

"I cannot imagine University of Waterloo athletics without Judy at the helm," says her boss, associate provost Catharine Scott. "She's just a monumental loss," Scott added, citing "who she is, her ethical leadership . . . works incredibly hard . . . a wonderful colleague . . . supporter and friend to students," and incidentally "held in huge respect by her peers across the country". McCrae, who was one of the first women to head athletics at a major Canadian university, is a former president of Canadian Interuniversity Sport.

An athletics staffer and Warrior coach since 1971, she became athletics director in 1994 with the retirement of Wally Delahey. Scott said McCrae will be leaving in August, and plans are to name a new director in time for them to overlap for a few weeks. She's appointed an advisory committee to help make the choice: two athletics department staff, two student athletes, an alumnus, a faculty member from applied health sciences, associate provost Bruce Mitchell and a representative of human resources. The position is advertised at the USG 17 rank, one of the highest levels available in the staff system.

In other matters . . . users of UW-ACE and the 'admmail' e-mail system might want to make other plans for this Saturday morning. "A number of servers will be shut down from 7:30 to 11:00," says Paul Snyder of information systems and technology, "as part of the air conditioning upgrade to IST's machine room. We apologize for any inconvenience caused by this necessary outage." (Also a bit inconvenient, incidentally, was a flood of spam to many UW e-mail users for several hours yesterday morning. IST traced the problem to "a bug in the Mysq1 cluster", meaning that incoming e-mail was getting through without being scanned for shameless offers of enlarged body parts.)

The Waterloo Regional Children's Museum in downtown Kitchener currently has a popular show about chimpanzees — "The Remarkable World of Jane Goodall" — and among the partners in creating it, it turns out, is UW's school of pharmacy. "One feature of this display," says a note from the school's Laura Manning, "is entitled 'Not All Pharmacists Are Human'. The School of Pharmacy and two practising pharmacists partnered to create this feature on the ways in which chimpanzees self-medicate through plant selection."

A first meeting is scheduled for tomorrow for a new student club, R3Design, as organizer David Kadish explains: "Design influences everything. The layout of our cities influences the energy we use for transportation and the relationship we have with the ecosystems near our homes. The design of our homes determines how we use — and waste — water resources. Such designs are often based on outdated assumptions and principles. R3Design aims to break down those assumptions and to design alternatives that account for inherent value of the ecological state of the world. R3Design will be focusing on learning how designs can enhance the positive impact that people have on the environment while minimizing the negative impacts of human activity. It will put that knowledge to use in rethinking and redesigning everyday tools and processes. Come out, contribute your thoughts about design and find out what is going to be happening for the remainder of the term!" Tomorrow's meeting will start at 5:30 p.m. in Rod Coutts Hall room 305.

And . . . maybe spring is around the corner: I had an excited phone call this morning to report the sighting of six (count 'em, six) robins in the shrubbery near South Campus Hall.

Back to top

Labour board confirms union outcome

UW officials got the official word yesterday that an application to unionize staff members through the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation has been dismissed by the Ontario Labour Relations Board.

[One typewritten page]It’s a formality that follows last week’s counting of ballots, in which staff members in grades USG 1-8 rejected unionization by 587 votes to 227. The OLRB made its final ruling (right: "The application is therefore dismissed") on the application that OSSTF filed in late January, a year after beginning to collect signatures on union cards from staff across campus.

Thursday’s vote-counting took place at the OLRB offices in Toronto, in the presence of UW officials, OSSTF representatives, UW staff involved in the union drive, and lawyers for both parties.

Neil Murray, the university’s director of staff and labour relations, noted that it was preceded by two days of negotiations over which staff members’ segregated ballots from the January 24 vote would be counted and which would be excluded, based on the group of staff proposed by OSSTF as members of the bargaining unit. Once an agreement was reached, a number of the ballots that were originally segregated were included for the final count.

With the unionization episode at an end, a letter has gone to staff members from UW president David Johnston. “In my previous letter to all staff,” he wrote, “I committed to respecting the wishes of the majority of staff. Clearly you have made a definitive decision as to how you wish to be represented. It is very encouraging that so many staff made their preference known.

“I hope that all staff can go forward from here and that we can continue our journey together in the spirit of collegiality and respect for one another that has been our hallmark. The University Administration is committed to working with the Staff Association to ensure that the rights, policies and working conditions of staff are a priority and to continue working together to improve as a university and as an employer.

“Thank you to all staff who voted. As I said in my previous letter, UW staff are the foundation of UW’s enormous success.”

Back to top

Peace studies program marks 30 years

from a Conrad Grebel University College news release

This weekend will mark the 30th anniversary of the Peace and Conflict Studies program at Conrad Grebel University College. The milestone will be observed with several events, including a free public celebration and keynote address, a fundraising banquet and a student conference.

[Two clergy with big smiles]Celebration of the program’s first 30 years will be held at the Centre for International Governance Innovation (57 Erb Street West, Waterloo) at 7:30 p.m. on Friday. This free event is open to the public, and will also serve as the kick-off event for the Inter-Collegiate Peace Fellowship’s 2008 student conference on the theme, “Building Bridges, Breaking Down Barriers: Religion’s Role in Reconciliation” which will take place over the course of the weekend. The evening’s keynote address will be given by special guests Pastor James Wuye and Imam Muhhamed Ashafa (left), co-recipients of the Tanenbaum Peacemaker Award in 2000 and the founders and co-executive directors of the Interfaith Mediation Centre and the Muslim-Christian dialogue Forum of Kaduna, Nigeria.

On Saturday, March 1, a fundraising banquet for the Frank H. Epp Memorial Fund, in support of the PACS program, will be held at the college at 6:30 p.m. Tickets for the dinner are $20 per person (order by calling 519-885-0220 ext. 24269). Pastor Wuye and Imam Ashafa will speak at this event, along with Conrad Brunk, the founding director of PACS.

The PACS program, which began in the academic year 1977-78, was established to “to educate students to pursue peace and justice in the context of diverse investigations into the origins and nature of conflict and violence”. It offers an interdisciplinary approach to education which is unified by a common philosophical approach based on the belief that non-violent and collaborative responses to conflict are possible. With the hope that PACS students will be a positive influence for peace as global and local citizens, the program connects theory and practice. PACS students have the opportunity to participate in field studies around the world, and can take a PACS major, joint major, minor, option or certificate.

Since 1958, the Inter-Collegiate Peace Fellowship (ICPF) student conference has been hosted at Mennonite and Mennonite-affiliated universities and colleges throughout the United States and Canada. The aims of the ICPF are to promote and inform students on peace issues and to provide a forum for students to build networks and create linkages with other students who share their interest in peacebuilding across North America.


Back to top

Yesterday's Daily Bulletin