Wednesday, May 7, 2008

  • Students hailed for their teaching
  • Coach named for women's basketball
  • Workshops, registrations and funds
  • Editor:
  • Chris Redmond
  • Communications and Public Affairs

[Posing with certificate]Students hailed for their teaching

Three of UW’s top teachers are actually students.

The three, this year’s winners of the Exceptional Teaching by a Student Award, were the guests of honour for lunch at the University Club on April 28, and will be lauded again at the time they graduate from UW — some at convocation ceremonies next month, others a year or two from now, depending on how close they are to finishing their degrees.

Meanwhile, the ETSA winners received handshakes and certificates from Bill Power, associate dean of graduate studies, and the graduate office has published brief citations indicating what achievements brought each of them into the limelight.

Pictured is one of the three, Erin Spicer, with Power. A graduate student in the biology department, Spicer “is excellent at maintaining student interest,” says the citation. “She is well prepared and excels in ensuring that students understand the concepts. In class she gives background material to explain the relevancy of in-class material. This is her second nomination for a teaching award and reflects a consistently high regard of her education skills.” It quotes one of the students who nominated her: “Erin is very good about ensuring the students learning the necessary material, and are completely prepared for exams and quizzes. She has a very positive attitude and is knowledgeable about the course material and the lab material.”

Another winner is Andrew Dilts of the management sciences department, described as “a dedicated teacher who is always well prepared for the courses he teaches. He makes himself available to students who need help. An example of this is he held an extra course before the final exam for students who were able to attend and even put the information on the web for students who could not attend the course. This gave students more confidence going into the exam.”

A faculty member describes Dilts as a natural teacher who has immense commitment and enthusiasm for teaching. And one student writes: “One of the difficulties with teaching a relatively abstract subject is relating the material to practical life. Andrew has an uncanny knack for being able to gauge a particular context or scenario to which theory can be applied which will make a student’s understanding of the subject much easier.”

The third winner is Amirhossein Hajimiragha of electrical and computer engineering: “Amir is a dedicated teacher who spent extra time ensuring that students understood the topic and giving them resources to find additional information. He was approachable, and answered questions very quickly and clearly. He won the E&CE Distinguished Teaching Assistantship Award twice in the past year.” Again, a student is quoted: “He was exceptional in teaching the concepts and also made them really simple for me to understand.”

Back to top

Coach named for women's basketball

The athletics department has named Tyler Slipp, most recently of Simon Fraser University, as the new coach for the Warrior women’s basketball program. He succeeds Christin Dickenson, who was with the team for just one season.

“In 2007-2008,” a news release says, “Tyler was a full-time assistant coach with the Simon Fraser University women’s basketball program that spent most of the season as the CIS #1 ranked team. Tyler served as an apprentice coach for Canada Basketball for the National Elite Development Academy in 2006 working with the top high school players in the country. Previous to NEDA, Tyler spent five years coaching in New Brunswick. He spent three years (2002-2005) as an assistant coach for the University of New Brunswick, five years as the New Brunswick Provincial Team (U15) coach, and two years coaching with the Centre for Performance, Atlantic, through Basketball Canada.

“Tyler is a NCCP level 3 and FIBA level 3 certified coach. He is a graduate from the University of New Brunswick with a bachelor’s degree in computer science.”

Says athletics director Judy McCrae: ““I am pleased to have Tyler Slipp come on board with the Warriors. Tyler is a young and exciting coach. He is a student of the game and has a philosophy of developing people and basketball talent. For the past five years he has been an assistant coach under great coaches and now brings this experience to Waterloo.”

The Slipp family “has a rich basketball background,” the news release goes on. “Tyler’s mother Joyce Slipp was the captain of the Canadian Women’s National Team and starting point guard at the 1976 Olympics in Montréal. She would become a long-time coach for the women’s program at the University of New Brunswick, retiring in 2006. Dick Slipp, Tyler’s father, played for UNB and also served as assistant coach for the Varsity Reds under wife Joyce.”

It quotes Slipp as feeling “tremendously honoured and excited” about joining the Warriors: “I am very eager to join an excellent institution and highly regarded basketball community. I cannot wait to get my feet wet as a CIS coach and make my mark on the Warrior program.” He’ll start work in the Physical Activities Complex on June 1.

Back to top

Workshops, registrations and funds

With the new term under way, all sorts of services and activities are getting rolling again. Registration is under way this week in the Physical Activities Complex for intramural sports leagues, and next week (May 12-15) for classes and workshops. Counselling services is accepting registrations for workshops on “reclaiming yourself”, “mindfulness based stress reduction”, and something called “New Directions: A Time for Men”. The student awards and financial aid office is processing loan and grant documents (at a temporary “loan release centre” in Federation Hall, to reduce the traffic at its main location in Needles Hall).

The conference centre in Ron Eydt Village is busy with comings and goings, some visitors staying overnight and others using just meeting rooms or meal facilities. A Skills Canada event is winding up today; some 80 participants in the Rotary Club's Camp Enterprise are at UW through tomorrow; and participants in a Technology in the Arts conference organized by the UW-based Centre for Cultural Management will be arriving Thursday and staying over the weekend. Coming later in the month: the Ontario Folk Dance Camp, the Canadian Computing Competition, and the Bibles for Missions annual conference.

Library books that were signed out by faculty, graduate students, and staff members before the beginning of April are due back to the library today. Borrowers are being urged to return or renew their books if they haven't already done so: "If they are renewing on-line, they can link directly to "your account" on Trellis."

And the continuing education department has a full schedule of one-day and two-day courses again, including “Juggling Multiple Projects” next Monday and Tuesday, “Leading People to Effectiveness” on May 15, and “Introduction to Managerial Accounting” on May 23. Details are on its web site.

A memo went out to departments this week explaining the opportunity that's presented by the International Undergraduate Work-Study Program for the spring term. "You could employ an international student on a part-time basis for one-quarter the normal cost," writes Linda Jajko of the student awards and financial aid office. "International students are not eligible for provincial government financial aid (OSAP)," she explains, and "obtaining other financing or part-time employment that fits the student's schedule is very difficult." Hence the program, financed 75 per cent from "a central university fund", to subsidize up to 25 part-time jobs (up to 10 hours a week) in UW departments. "Jobs that tend to receive the most interest are those that create meaningful work experience for the students," Jajko notes, inviting faculty or staff members to submit job proposals by May 16 for the May-to-August term. More information: ext. 35726.

Finally . . . what kind of income can you expect in your golden years, if you depend on the UW staff and faculty pension plan? It will soon be easier to find out, says a memo from the human resources department: “The Pension and Benefits Committee is pleased to announce myPENSIONinfo, a self-service pension projection and pension information tool designed for members of the University of Waterloo Pension Plan. A phased approach is being used to roll out myPENSIONinfo, in order that Human Resources can provide appropriate support. Watch for your letter from Catharine Scott, Chair of the Pension and Benefits Committee, for your turn to begin using this tool.” The new service is a long-awaited spinoff of the myHRinfo system, which has been providing self-service payroll information for the past five years.


Back to top

Link of the day

Brahms 175

When and where

President David Johnston Run for Health (3rd annual), 4:30 p.m., 5-km run or 2.5-km walk around ring road, relay teams welcome, details online.

Columbia Lake Health Club lunch-and-learn session: “10 Ways to Lose 10 Pounds” 5:30, boardroom at TechTown, 340 Hagey Boulevard.

Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics lecture: Gerard ’t Hooft, Utrecht University, Netherlands, “Science Fiction and Reality”, 7:00 p.m., Waterloo Collegiate Institute, ticket information 519-883-4480.

‘Methodological Challenges in Health Research’ workshop Thursday 8:30 to 5:00, Lyle Hallman Institute, registration closed, details online.

Surplus sale of UW equipment at central stores, East Campus Hall, Thursday 12:30 to 2:00 p.m.

Celebrating Teaching Excellence reception (by invitation) to honour teaching award winners and others involved in teaching, Thursday 3:30, University Club.

Bike Centre volunteer drop-in session Thursday 3:30 to 5:00, lower level, Student Life Centre, details online.

Math alumni reception at Ontario Association of Mathematics Educators convention, Thursday 5:00, Sheraton Parkway North, Richmond Hill.

Warriors Band practice (new members welcome) Thursday 5:30 to 6:30, Physical Activities Complex room 2012.

Last day to add a spring term course: May 9 (distance education), May 16 (on campus).

Graduate Student Leisure Research Symposium (16th annual) Friday, Lyle Hallman Institute auditorium, details online.

Carousel Dance Centre spring performance, “The Wizard of Oz”, Friday-Sunday, Humanities Theatre, details online.

Da Capo Chamber Choir, based at Conrad Grebel University College, concert “Three Reaching Beyond”, including premiere of “Moonset” by Jeff Enns, Saturday 8:00 p.m., St. John the Evangelist Anglican Church, Kitchener, tickets $20 (students and seniors $15).

Fiscal year end for 2007-08: deadline for accounting transactions before April 30, 2008, to be submitted to finance office, East Campus Hall, is May 12.

Learning about Teaching annual symposium May 12-14, details online, including Presidents’ Colloquium Monday May 12, 2:00, Humanities Theatre: Marilla Svinicki, University of Texas at Austin, “Changing Students’ Attitudes about Who’s Responsible for Learning,” reception follows, all welcome.

UW Blooms: free seeds, seedlings and garden gear, pick up or exchange, Monday, May 12, 10:30 to 4:00, Student Life Centre multipurpose room, sponsored by UW Recreation Committee.

Work reports from co-op students’ winter work term due Monday, May 12, 4:00 p.m. (most programs).

Positions available

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

• Research financial analyst, office of research, USG 7
• Manager, special projects, analysis, Centre for Behavioural Research and Program Evaluation, USG 10
• Research ethics officer, office of research, USG 8
• Administrative assistant, Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology, dean of engineering office, USG 6
• Technical support specialist, housing and residences, USG 6
• Recruitment coordinator, applied health sciences, USG 8
• Student services assistant, applied health sciences, USG 5
• Financial officer, earth and environmental sciences, USG 7
• Financial aid assistant, office of the registrar, USG 5/6

Longer descriptions are available on the HR web site.

One click away

'Waterloo's first ghetto' series in the Chronicle
Graduate House gets 'reprieve', Record says
Love story (Record)
Hamilton paper profiles UW's female athlete of the year
UW technician's well known among local longboarders
E-newsletter profiles engineering jazz band
St. Jerome's lists winners from its awards night
Why are most university students women? (Stats Canada)
Ontario government sets out 'innovation agenda'
Adult learning: characteristics of learners (Stats Canada)
'Outrage' after 14 arrested at U of T sit-in
'Students aren't so web-wise after all'
WLU launches new internal newspaper
Rich get richer, poor get poorer (Walkom, Star)
Columnist says campus athletes should take more courses

Yesterday's Daily Bulletin