Wednesday, February 25, 2009

  • Waterloo Region police seek student
  • Scientists eye rock glaciers in Chile
  • Around the world and right on campus
  • Editor:
  • Chris Redmond
  • Communications and Public Affairs

Waterloo Region police seek pharmacy student

Justin AlcortaWaterloo Regional Police Service are looking for assistance from the public in locating Justin Alcorta (right), aged 23 years. Alcorta was last seen on the evening of Saturday, 21 February 2009, in the Kitchener area.

Alcorta is a pharmacy student at Waterloo University. Alcorta does not have access to a vehicle and travels on foot or by bus. Alcorta has links to the Markham and Toronto area.

Alcorta is described as Asian, 5'7", slim build, short black hair, brown eyes. Alcorta wears glasses and is believed to be wearing a grey Columbia jacket, brown boots, jeans, carrying a dark green 'Eddie Bauer' back pack.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Waterloo Regional Police Service on 519 653 7700 x 3330 or Crime Stoppers on 1 800 222 TIPS.

UPDATE: Justin Alcorta has been found alive and well.

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Scientists eye rock glaciers in Chile

From the Faculty of Environment website

Mountain researchers from the Waterloo Department of Geography and Environmental Management visited Chile in December to conduct field research and develop future collaborative research projects with the Dirección General de Aguas (Chilean Water Directorate, DGA) and Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile.

Alexander BrenningAccording to geography professor and project leader Alexander Brenning (left), rock glaciers are more important as stores of frozen water than “normal” glaciers in some dry areas of the Andes. These rock glaciers are not only threatened by climate change, but also by the impacts of mining operations, according to research conducted by professor Brenning.

Brenning’s team is using geomatics technology to measure the movement of rock glaciers and possible changes in rock glacier ice volumes in the Laguna Negra watershed, an area that provides two-thirds of Santiago’s drinking-water supply during the dry summer months. The importance of this research, which was initiated in 2002, is underlined by Chile’s new National Glacier Policy, which aims at protecting and monitoring glaciers and rock glaciers.

As a result of a meeting with the Ministry of Public Works in Santiago on the initiative of the Chilean Ambassador to Canada, the DGA and the Canadian research team have started to develop a joint rock glacier monitoring program.

The research team led by Brenning includes postdoctoral researcher Xavier Bodin and two Chilean geography students, who are both funded by the Graduate Student Exchange Program (GSEP). Brenning says that there are more opportunities for Chilean students to study at the University of Waterloo.

“Future research in the Chilean Andes," he explains, "will provide further scientific training opportunities for Chilean students and professionals within the geography and geomatics specializations at the University of Waterloo and its Interdisciplinary Centre on Climate Change (IC3).”

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Around the world and right on campus

Adel Sedra, engineering dean, with Yousif Al-Khdr, 2B co-op student and Elena L’Pris, BASc ’06.The university marked the official launch of its UAE campus yesterday with a celebration and information session in Dubai. Potential students and their families, along with UW alumni and other friends, joined officials from the university and its partners in the project, the Higher Colleges of Technology (HCT), to hear how Waterloo is importing its successful co-op model to that part of the world.

Engineering dean Adel Sedra (above, centre, with Yousif Al-Khder, 2B co-op student and Elena L’Pris, BASc ’06) was on deck to deliver one of two keynote addresses, with the other coming from Tayeb Kamali, vice-chancellor of HCT. Rocco Fondacaro, director of student and faculty relations in Co-operative Education & Career Services, introduced UW’s proven system of co-op education, which differs significantly from the unpaid internships common to the region.

The time change made getting an update on yesterday’s event tricky. Look for more on the UAE campus in the days ahead.

Call for creators

Another sure sign of spring’s approach is this announcement from the Friends of the Library. This year’s Authors Event will be held Monday, April 20 in the Theatre of the Arts, Modern Languages Building. Chancellor Elect Prem Watsa will be the featured speaker.

“As part of the event, we will honour members of the university community who, in 2008, authored a book, composed a musical score, were recognised for their design or photography work, or mounted an art show. Participants are publicly recognized during the event and their work is on display.

"We would appreciate receiving information about anyone in your department whose achievements should be included in our celebration. Please send this information to Cheryl Kieswetter in the Dana Porter Library (LIB 421) or email .”

Drama thesis is Bent

Bent performanceAs spring nears, thesis projects begin to bloom. For fourth-year drama students, the honours thesis project may emerge on stage. This year, graduating students Monty Martin and Joe Recchia directed plays; both are being performed this week in Studio 180 in the Humanities building. High Life by Lee MacDougall, directed by Monty Martin, plays Thursday and Saturday at 8 p.m. Bent by Martin Sherman, directed by Joe Recchia, can be seen this Friday at 8 p.m. and Saturday at 2 p.m.

Left, student actor Jeff Ulrich plays Max and Ryan Walsh plays Wolf in Bent, which deals with the treatment of gays in the Third Reich. The project was begun, says the media release, “to bring more examples of Queer Theatre to the University of Waterloo campus in an effort to educate, provide positive role models, and promote tolerance. It appeals to those from all walks of life with its universal story of love and survival in the face of adversity.” Tickets are $10 each, or $16 for both plays. Book tickets from the box office, 519-888-4908.

Spring's coming: guess when?

The University of Waterloo weather station is holding its annual contest to predict the arrival of spring-like weather, reports UW Media Relations. The station challenges the public to guess the date and time when the recorded temperature at the station will first exceed 20 C.

"The winter season seemed to come early this year. Does that mean that it will stick around longer than usual or does it mean that spring will be early?" asked Frank Seglenieks, co-ordinator of the weather station, which is celebrating 11 years of service.
To enter the contest, visit the website before the deadline this Friday at 3 p.m.

Last year, almost 1,000 people from the campus and local community participated in the contest. Winners will receive book prizes, courtesy of UW Retail Services. Since the weather station was launched in 1998, the earliest day that the temperature hit 20 degrees was March 8, 2000. The latest it occurred was April 19, 2006.

News from the south

boatful of Grebel volunteers in LouisianaFollowing up on the news of his trip to Diamond, Louisiana with 24 Grebel students in reading week, Eric Kennedy writes: "We may have only spent 10 days away from Waterloo, but it is an experience we will carry with us for a long time. We did everything from flooring to insulating, from transporting supplies by boat to installing metal cables to strengthen the new homes against strong winds.

The project coordinators from Mennonite Disaster Services were warm and welcoming (much like the weather!), and meeting the families that we were building for was an incredibly powerful experience.

"We each learned many new skills, battled with clouds of gnats, and experienced the world in such a real way. Over the course of the week, we worked on about a half dozen different homes - part of a larger effort that sees a new group of volunteers each week to carry on the project.

"We are happy to be back in Canada, but we'll really miss taking a boat to work, seeing dolphins and pelicans pass our site, and the absolutely beautiful weather."

Report from UW Athletics

sports buttonathlete of the week button“The Waterloo Warriors hosted the McMaster Marauders in the OUA season finale on Saturday afternoon and came out on top with a 72-66 win. With the win, Waterloo advances to the playoffs at 7 p.m. today at Guelph. A Guelph win over Lakehead later Saturday night put the Warriors and Gryphons in a deadlock for fourth place. However, Guelph holds the tie-breaker and therefore receives home court advantage when the two teams clash in round one of the playoffs.” Click the buttons for more information.

CPA staff

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When and where

Freedom to Read Book Sale at UW bookstore, South Campus Hall, today, 9:30 to 4:30.

The HAPN Great Race: teams of two compete to reach checkpoints across campus, Register February 24-26. (Event is March 3, 6 to 8 p.m. Sponsored by Healthy Active Promotion Network; details.

Drama thesis project: “High Life” by Lee MacDougall, directed by Monty Martin, February 24, 26 and 28, 8:00, Studio 180, Humanities building, tickets $10.

Mosa McNeilly will speak about her experiences as a community artist facilitator with the K-W Art Gallery Wednesday at noon in East Campus Hall room 1219.

Free noon concert: “Encounters with Carter and Messiaen: Really Interesting Things about Time”, Cheryl Pauls, pianist, Wednesday 12:30 p.m., Conrad Grebel UC chapel.

Garage sale fund-raiser for drama student trip to Italy, Wednesday 1- 4 p.m., Theatre of the Arts. Drop off items for sale at Modern Languages loading dock Monday.

SJU Beyond Borders program information session Wednesday, February 25, 2 p.m., St. Jerome's room 3012. Details.

One Waterloo Diversity Campaign auditions for the 2009 “Telling My Story” series (performances in March) Wednesday 2:00 to 6:00, Humanities room 344, and Thursday 4-7 p.m., Arts Lecture Hall room 208. Details.

Health informatics seminar: Brendan Seaton, Information Technology of Canada, “Tomorrow’s Industry”, Wednesday 3:00 to 4:30, Davis Centre room 1302.

WICI seminar: Matthew Hoffman, University of Toronto, "Governance Avalanches," Wednesday, 3 - 4:30 p.m., Burgundy Room, University Club. RSVP Details.

The Engineering and Technology Labour Market Study: John O’Grady, Prism Economics and Analysis, presents findings of study for Ontario Centre for Engineering and Public Policy, Wednesday 3:30 p.m., Carl Pollock Hall room 2387.

Career workshop: “Business Etiquette and Professionalism” Wednesday 3:30, Tatham Centre room 1208. Details.

School of Computer Science information session on third-year and fourth-year courses, Wednesday 3:30, Davis Centre room 1304.

Classical studies lecture: Duncan Howitt-Marshall, University of Cambridge, “Pre-Classical Seafaring in the Eastern Mediterranean”, Wednesday 4:00, Arts Lecture Hall room 208.

Graduate Student Association deadline for nominations in annual executive elections, Wednesday 4:30 p.m. Election, if required, March 10-12. Details.

‘Dystopia: The Future Is Coming; Panic Now!’ lecture by Garry Potter, WLU sociology professor, Wednesday 7 p.m., Kitchener city hall.

Pascal Lectures on Christianity and the University: Denis Alexander, University of Cambridge, “Rescuing Darwin” February 25, “Is Darwinism Incompatible with Purpose?” February 26, both 8:00, Conrad Grebel UC great hall. Details.

PsychSoc Magic Workshop with UW Magic Club and UW Prof. James Danckert, Wednesday, 8-9 pm, Arts Lecture Hall room 105.

UW International Spouses: "Love & Marriage Around the World." Share stories, bring wedding photos, traditional wedding clothes. Thursday, February 26, 12:45 pm at Columbia Lake Village community centre (off Columbia between Westmount and Fischer-Hallman). Children welcome; childcare may be provided. Details at or website.

Render (UW art gallery) and Critical Media Lab (department of English) present Rev. Luke Murphy, information-based artist, “The Cup of Loneliness”, Thursday 4:30, Arts Lecture Hall room 113.

German film series: “Bagdad Café” (1990), Thursday 6:00, East Campus Hall room 1220.

Render (UW art gallery) opening reception for “Break It Down”, videos by Manuel Saiz, Rachel Scott and Lyntj Vosteveld, Thursday 6:00 to 8:00 p.m., East Campus Hall; exhibition continues through March 21.

Texas Hold’em poker tournament Thursday, February 26, 6:30 p.m., atrium of TechTown, 340 Hagey Boulevard, tickets $60, proceeds to Food Bank, information 519-746-7416.

Arriscraft Lecture: Chris Perry, ‘servo’, New York, “Networks and Environments”, Thursday, February 26, 6:30 p.m., Architecture lecture hall, Cambridge.

Chemistry in society lecture: William Power, “Spectroscopy: Shedding Light on Our World”, Thursday 7:00, Biology I room 271.

K-W Symphony “Bold and Brassy” with Alain Trudel, conductor and trombone, Thursday, February 26, 7:30 p.m., Humanities Theatre. Information

Warriors in OUA track and field championships at York University, Friday and Saturday.

Drop (penalty 1) period ends, February 27; last day to receive a WD grade for dropped courses.

Pension and benefits committee Friday, February 27, 8:30 a.m., Needles Hall room 3004.

Knowledge Integration seminar: Kieran Bonner, St. Jerome's University, on "The Culture of Cities project: The Case of Hockey moves in Montreal and Toronto." Friday, February 27, 2:30- 4 p.m., Environment 2, room 2002. Details.

CASA Fashion Show Friday, February 27, 7:00, Humanities Theatre, proceeds to Canadian Cancer Society.

Canadian Clay and Glass Gallery presents “Whisky, Wakes and Wandering Spirits” with ghost stories and presentation on Victorian mourning rituals, Friday, February 27, 7:00, admission $5. Details.

‘Ugly Prom Night’ event at Bombshelter pub, Student Life Centre, Saturday, February 28.

‘Let’s Dance Showcase’ Sunday, March 1, 1:30 p.m., Humanities Theatre.

Victorian fashion show Sunday, March 1, 2:00, Canadian Clay and Glass Gallery, Caroline Street.

Application deadline for spring 2009 undergraduate admission is March 2. Details.

Application deadline for fall 2009 engineering year one admission is March 2. Details.

Pre-enrolment course selection week for fall term courses, March 2-8.

Peter Russell, earth sciences, 65th birthday cocktail reception during the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada convention, Monday, March 2, 6:00 to 8:00, Fairmont Royal York Hotel, Toronto, RSVP sharonmc@

Math alumni event: Robert L. Brown, statistics and actuarial science, special lecture on the Ontario Expert Commission on Pensions; reception follows. Tuesday, March 10, 3 - 4:30 p.m., Davis Centre room 1302. Register by March 3

UW Directions, Aboriginal High School Enrichment Conference, March 3-7, St. Paul’s College. Details.

‘Interactive Teaching and Learning Strategies’ three-day workshop sponsored by Centre for Teaching Excellence, March 3, 5 and 10. Details.

UW Recreation Committee presents Mary Ann Vanden Elzen, author of Your Money or Your Life, “Money or You: Who’s the Boss?” Tuesday, March 3, 12:00, Math and Computer room 5158.

Free term abroad at Haifa information session (open to all undergraduates) Tuesday, March 3, 4:00, Math and Computer room 5158. Details.

Faculty of Arts public lecture: Mary Simon, president of Inuit Tapirisat Kanatami, “Inuit and the Canadian Arctic: Sovereignty Begins at Home” Tuesday, March 3, 7:00, MacKirdy Hall, St. Paul’s College. Details.

Engineering Shadow Day for Grade 11 and 12 students, Wednesday, March 4. Details.

Free noon concert: Carol Ann Weaver, Rebecca Campbell and others, “Remembering Africa Again” Wednesday, March 4, 12:30 p.m., Conrad Grebel UC chapel.

‘Mourning the Unborn Dead’: Religious Studies Society presents Jeff Wilson, RS department, “A Buddhist Ritual Comes to America”, marking the release of his new book, Wednesday, March 4, 2:30 p.m., Renison UC great hall.

Career workshop: “Interview Skills, Selling Your Skills” Wednesday, March 4, 3:30, Tatham Centre room 1208. Details.

Climate change lecture: Mark Serreze, University of Colorado at Boulder, “Cranking Up the Arctic Heat”, Wednesday, March 4, 7:00 p.m., Federation Hall.

Positions available

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

• Administrative assistant/ communications coordinator, faculty association, USG 5

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