Wednesday, June 3, 2009

  • Krowds expected at noontime karnival
  • E&CE prof is mourned; other notes
  • Math dean not seeking a second term
  • Editor:
  • Chris Redmond
  • Communications and Public Affairs

[Karnival invitation]Krowds expected at noontime karnival

Today’s the day — and the weather’s looking not too bad — for the annual Keystone Campaign celebration, this year called Keystone Karnival. It’s scheduled for 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on the Matthews Hall green. (The two-hour time period is officially paid time off for all faculty and staff.)

“Come dressed to party!” says the invitation that went out to staff, faculty, and retirees last week. “Complete your door prize coupon,” it adds, “for a chance to win a great prize.”

A memo from UW president David Johnston describes the day as “that time of year when the UW community joins together to celebrate the incredible success of the Keystone Campaign". According to its web site, Keystone, which is the arm of Campaign Waterloo for faculty, staff and retirees, has raised nearly $8.8 million from more than 2,300 donors towards scholarship funds and other UW priorities.

This year's celebration will feature a special team challenge in the form of a carnival-style scavenger hunt, the invitation says. There will also be free food and drink, games and activities (try Ring Road Racing, the Coin Toss, Darts, or the Strongman Competition), draw prizes, and entertainment — including music by Katrina Di Gravio of organizational and human development and Ian Taylor of athletics and recreational services. Steve Brown of statistics and actuarial science will be master of ceremonies. And some 11 staff members, including such celebrities as Trenny McGinnis of the university secretariat and safety director Kevin Stewart, will take 10-minute shifts over (or in) the dunk tank.

Anyone who needs help getting to the event or information about free parking (of special interest to those at UW satellite locations in Kitchener and Cambridge) can call ext. 37581.

A Keystone celebration aimed at evening staff is scheduled for 10 to 11 p.m. tonight in the Festival Room, South Campus Hall.

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[Hamel]E&CE prof is mourned; other notes

The department of electrical and computer engineering announced yesterday that faculty member John Hamel (right) has died. He was 49. The funeral service will be held Friday at 11 a.m. at St. Mary's Roman Catholic Church in his home town of Tillsonburg, Ontario. A graduate of the Royal Military College of Canada, with a master's and PhD from Waterloo, Hamel was a specialist in such fields as the design of RF and microwave devices for communications applications.

Waterloo Region “is reshaping the Canadian brain drain and becoming an international brain gain region”, says a news release from Canada’s Technology Triangle, announcing that the Region will receive the Canadian Urban Institute’s 2009 Global City Award this Friday at the Urban Leadership Awards in Toronto. “Together,” according to CUI president Glen Murray, CTT and the Perimeter Institute “have managed to transform the Cambridge-Kitchener-Waterloo region into a global centre of excellence. Their combined efforts have created a global identity for three cities and enhanced the region’s reputation, attracted high-tech businesses and improved the region’s place in the world.” Friday’s event will also honour 17 other groups and individuals across the country who “are making Canadian cities exciting and dynamic places to live and work”. CTT leader John Jung explains what Waterloo Region has going for it: “We’re still small enough that people can rally and build coalitions to make things happen here. We pool our resources between the local municipalities, the local businesses and the institutions and that allows us to showcase our communities on the international market in a way that few other places can. Our key is the collaborative nature of the way we work and the fact that we have a strong foundation of technology that dates back over the decades.”

Sarah Rodrigues, the copyright coordinator in UW Graphics, writes to announce that Graphics Courseware is now accepting orders for the fall 2009 term. "As fall is our busiest term, we encourage you to submit your orders as early as possible to ensure printing before the first day of classes. You can place your order by emailing courseware@, calling ext. 33996, or placing an online order. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions.”

Marie Schmidt, who retired from UW's finance office last week after 31 years as a staff member, sends a note to "thank the University of Waterloo community for their generous donations to the Staff Endowment Fund in honour of her retirement". • The Arts Computer Experience camp has room for "a few more" kids, ages 7 to 12, in its sessions July 27 through August 7 and August 10-21. • Here's a reminder that the Commuter Challenge 2009 is under way, promoting "any mode of travel except driving a car alone to work", and that UW people can register as an individual or as part of the university.

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Math dean not seeking a second term

Thomas F. Coleman, dean of the Faculty of Mathematics since 2005, will leave that position next year, the provost has announced.

[Coleman]Coleman (left) would have been eligible for a second term as dean starting July 1, 2010. The nominating committee that was created earlier this year to consider the dean’s position will now look for candidates to become the next dean.

Said provost Amit Chakma in a memo to faculty, staff and students in math: “The nominating committee is beginning the process of finding a successor to Dean Tom Coleman, who has informed me that, after considering the results of the ballot issued to faculty and staff in the Faculty of Mathematics, he does not wish to serve beyond the end of his current term, which expires June 30, 2010.

“The committee is now undertaking further consultation to identify the issues, challenges and opportunities facing the faculty, and the critical qualities of the individual who might provide the best leadership as the next Dean of Mathematics.

“The committee would very much appreciate receiving input on this phase of its work and you are invited to make your views known and to suggest the names of strong potential candidates.”

Comments, he said, can go in writing to the nominating committee’s secretary, Erin Windibank (ewindiba@ or to any member of the committee. “Comments are due by Wednesday, June 17 and will be held in confidence.”

The committee members:

  • Amit Chakma, chair (ext. 84766, provost@
  • Andrew Brown, graduate student, combinatorics and optimization (ext. 37814, salvor7@
  • Robin Cohen, computer science (ext. 34457, rcohen@
  • Lis D'Alessio, staff member, pure mathematics (ext. 33484, eadalessio@
  • Michaelangelo Finistauri, undergraduate student (mfinista@
  • Beth Jewkes, management sciences (ext. 33279, emjewkes@
  • Julie Kalbfleisch, staff member, marketing and undergraduate recruitment (ext. 35447, jkalbfle@
  • Kevin Lamb, applied mathematics (ext. 36246, kglamb@
  • Jock MacKay, statistics and actuarial science (ext. 35146, rjmackay@
  • Alfred Menezes, combinatorics and optimization (ext. 36934, ajmenezes@
  • Cameron Stewart, pure mathematics (ext. 35567, cstewart@
  • Peter van Beek, computer science (ext. 35344, vanbeek@

Coleman has a PhD from UW (in 1979) and until his arrival at UW four years ago was director of Cornell University’s Cornell Theory Center and its spinoff, CTC-Manhattan, based in New York City. With an annual budget of more than $21 million US, the CTC supports research in more than 100 fields, including mathematics, astrophysics, finance, materials and agriculture, by providing high-end cycles for computer-intensive problems, a growing facility for data-intensive problems, and an advisory consulting service. His own chief interest is the mathematics of finance.

When Coleman was named dean, Chakma called him "a super scholar and strong administrator who has built strong links with industry and has been very involved in outreach activities to establish scholarship centres in China. I am sure that with his leadership we'll see more exploration of these types of activities and strengthening of our industrial linkages." His years heading the UW math faculty have seen it establish offices for exactly that purpose in New York and in Toronto’s MaRS research district.


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Link of the day

Ten years ago at UW

When and where

Co-op employer interviews (main group) June 1-18.

Procurement Trade Show 2009, showcasing products available to the university community, last day, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Davis Centre room 1301. Details.

Career workshop: “Career Exploration and Decision Making” 10:30, Tatham Centre room 1112. Details.

Research projects workshop sponsored by Centre for Teaching Excellence, 2:00, Flex Lab, Dana Porter Library. Details.

Wilfrid Laurier University spring convocation ceremonies: today 2:00, WLU athletic complex; Thursday 10:00 and 2:00, athletic complex; Friday 10:00, Waterloo Memorial Recreation Complex; June 10, 10:00, Sanderson Centre for the Performing Arts, Brantford. Details.

UW Farm Market meeting for anyone interested in volunteering with the market, 2 p.m., Student Life Centre second level, outside WPIRG office.

UW Biomedical Discussion Group: Roderick Slavcev, pharmacy, “Exploiting Phage and Phage-encoded Systems for the Design of Novel Therapeutics” 2:30, Davis Centre room 1302. Details.

Moree Dance performance 6:30 p.m., Humanities Theatre.

Lectures in Quantum Information series by Anthony Leggett: "The physics of topological quantum computing: selected topics." June 4, 9, 16, 18, 23, 25 and 30, and July 2, 2 p.m., Research Advancement Centre room 2009. All welcome.

Sound in the Lands, conference exploring Mennonite music, June 4-8, Conrad Grebel University College. Concerts: Mennofolk (free), Thursday 4:00 to midnight, Grebel great hall; Chamber music ($10, students $5) Friday 8:00, Grebel chapel; World Music Collaborative Concert ($10 and $5) Saturday 8:30, Grebel great hall; Choral concert ($10 and $5) Sunday 8:00, First United Church, Waterloo. Details.

Career workshop: “Entrepreneurship, a Student’s Perspective” Thursday 12:30, Tatham Centre room 1208. Details.

Microteaching session for international teaching assistants to practise and get feedback, Thursday 2:30, Flex Lab, Dana Porter Library. Details.

WPIRG and the UW Women's Centre present Alternative Menstrual Products Workshop, Thursday 5:30 p.m., Student Life Centre room 2105B.

School of Optometry continuing education weekend June 5-7; Woodruff Lecture by Judith West-Mays, McMaster University; Clair Bobier lecture by William Bobier, UW optometry; reunion dinner; optometric assistants’ program; official opening of Optometry building expansion, Friday 11:30 a.m., by invitation. Details.

‘The Impostor Phenomenon in Academia’ workshop sponsored by Centre for Teaching Excellence, Monday 1:00, Flex Lab, Dana Porter Library. Details.

‘Canada 3.0: Defining Canada’s Digital Future’ conference for industry leaders, policy-makers and researchers, sponsored by UW Stratford Institute, Open Text, and Canadian Digital Media Network, June 8-9, Rotary Complex, Stratford. Details.

Ninety-Eighth Convocation: applied health sciences and environment, and installation of Chancellor, Wednesday, June 10, 10:00; science, Wednesday 2:30; arts, Thursday, June 11, 10:00 and 2:30; mathematics, Friday, June 12, 10:00 and 2:30; engineering, Saturday, June 13, 10:00 and 2:30; all ceremonies in Physical Activities Complex. Details.

ACM-style programming contest to help select UW’s teams for next year’s international competition, June 13. Details.

25-Year Club annual reception June 18, 6:00 p.m., Physical Activities Complex, by invitation, information ext. 32078.

Last day for 50 per cent fee refund for dropped courses, June 19.

Canada’s Wonderland trip Friday, June 19, buses leave Davis Centre 9:30 a.m., tickets $45 at Federation of Students office.

Co-op job ranking for fall term opens June 19, 1:00 p.m., closes June 22, 2:00 p.m.; match results available June 22, 4:00 p.m.

Canada Day holiday Wednesday, July 1, UW offices and most services closed; classes cancelled; annual celebrations and fireworks on the north campus 2:00 to 11:00.

Positions available

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

• Director, communications, office of the dean of engineering, USG 11 (one-year secondment or contract)
• Development officer, faculty of arts and development and alumni affairs, USG 10-11 (one-year secondment or contract)

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