Wednesday, April 21, 2010

  • Many buildings 'off limits' this weekend
  • Teens discover the health sciences
  • Getting ready for conference week
  • Editor:
  • Chris Redmond
  • Communications and Public Affairs

Many buildings 'off limits' this weekend

Half the central campus will be “absolutely off limits” during a 28-hour utilities shutdown this weekend. The warning is being taken so seriously that it came in an e-mail message from the provost to all faculty and staff members, distributed late Monday.

The shutdown, scheduled to run from 4 p.m. Saturday to 8 p.m. Sunday, is planned so that utility hookups can be made to the new Quantum-Nano Centre under construction in the middle of the main campus, the plant operations department says.

The event comes at one of the quietest times of year, immediately after the end of winter term exams. Residences will be empty, and almost no activity would be scheduled over the weekend anyway, so the main concern involves laboratories where equipment normally keeps running all the time.

[Utilities shutdown map]As previously announced, buildings in the north and east sections of the campus will be without electrical power, heat and ventilation. The southern part of the campus will have no heat and ventilation, but electrical power will be available.

It’s the buildings in the first group — from Ron Eydt Village to Chemistry II and the Davis Centre, and also Carl Pollock Hall — where the shutdown is complete. “UW Police will clear and lock these buildings at 4:00 p.m. on Saturday and re-open them on Sunday when full power has been restored,” the provost’s memo says. “These buildings will be absolutely off limits to everyone. Anyone found trespassing in these buildings may be subject to disciplinary measures.”

Pretty much the same rule applies to Math and Computer, Matthews Hall, and the Doug Wright Engineering building, where emergency electrical power will be provided in some areas “to provide critical services”. The provost writes: “These buildings will be absolutely off limits to everyone except security personnel and UW-designated individuals who have been authorized to be present.”

The buildings with “partial service” — electricity but no heat — will not be specially shut down during the weekend’s work. Those buildings include Engineering 2 and 3, most science buildings, and the arts side of the campus.

The map at left sketches the situation: buildings in the area marked in red will have no power and will be closed, those in green will be open (as much as they normally are on a weekend) but without heat, and those in blue will have power in key areas but will be closed.

“We understand the inconvenience this shut-down may cause to members of our campus community,” the provost writes, “and to that end have made best efforts to mitigate that inconvenience while fulfilling our statutory and regulatory obligations to ensure your safety.  We ask for your full cooperation.”

A memo from the university safety office tells researchers that laboratories in buildings that will not have power this weekend should “suspend” operations from Friday night to Monday morning. “Fume hoods and other ventilation will not be operating. Therefore do not leave hazardous materials or processes in fume hoods. . . . Shut off compressed gases and gas supply lines to equipment. Turn off and unplug electrical devices prone to damage due to electrical failure. Defrost refrigerators and freezers to avoid water damage.”

The Student Life Centre will be closed from 2 p.m. Saturday to 8 p.m. Sunday.

The Davis Centre library will be open from noon to 3:45 p.m. on Saturday, closed on Sunday. The Dana Porter Library will be open from noon to 5 p.m. both days.

Backup power will keep the central computer servers in the Math and Computer building operating, providing support to the central web site and many computer-based services. Web servers, e-mail and other systems based in other buildings may be out of operation. The telephone system will be working.

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Teens discover the health sciences

a news release from the media relations office

More than 200 high school students from Kitchener-Waterloo, Guelph, Brantford and the Greater Toronto Area will explore the exciting world of health sciences at a special event today. The Canadian Medical Hall of Fame/TD Discovery Days in Health Sciences program, offered at nine Canadian universities, presents a full day of 17 interactive workshops, a keynote lecture and a career panel discussion.

"The University of Waterloo is proud to join this important national initiative that introduces young people to the field of health sciences," said president David Johnston. "Discovery Day is offered for the first time at Waterloo thanks to a wonderful collaborative effort between our faculty of applied health sciences and the faculty of science."

Today at 9 a.m., Lieutenant-Colonel Jim Kile, Joint Task Force Central/ Land Forces Central Area Regional Surgeon and a Waterloo graduate, will deliver a presentation in the Humanities Theatre entitled "Kabul versus Kandahar: Medical Innovations and Challenges from the Field Hospital".

Afterward, students will visit research labs and teaching rooms where they have the opportunity to dissect and x-ray spinal segments, stain cells using state-of-the-art 3-D microscopes, and apply athletic taping techniques to their classmates, among other hands-on activities.

“We know that providing opportunities for students to interact with health professionals in their real-life setting helps the students imagine themselves in these roles someday,” said Janet Tufts, executive director of the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame. “Life-altering decisions are made at Discovery Day, and students leave feeling more excited, interested and knowledgeable about a possible career in the health sciences.”

Among the interactive workshops are "Human Neuroscience in Action" ("Discover modern neuroimaging techniques for investigating how the human nervous system controls and learns new behaviour") as well as "Athletic Taping" and "Imaging of the Human Eye".

A non-profit organization located in London, Ontario, the Canadian Medical Hall of Fame offers the Discovery Days program through the support of corporate sponsors, in this case TD Bank Financial Group. The Canadian Medical Hall of Fame celebrates discovery and innovation in the medical sciences both through Discovery Days and its laureate program.

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Getting ready for conference week

Next week, in the niche between winter term and spring term, brings several major events to Waterloo. A quick rundown, with more to come in the Daily Bulletin over the next few days:

Graduate Student Research Conference Monday-Friday with some 350 students making oral or poster presentations; all are welcome to listen. Keynote speakers ar David Harvey, Alzheimer  Society of Ontario (Monday 1:00); Gordon Willmot, UW statistics and actuarial science (Tuesday 11:00); Dan-Eric Nilsson, Lund University, Sweden (Tuesday 1:00); Chris Hadfield, Canadian astronaut (Tuesday 5:00); Gerry Wright, McMaster University (Wednesday 1:00); Parker Mitchell, Engineers Without Borders (Thursday 3:00). Details.

Learning About Teaching symposium sponsored by the Teaching Excellence Council and Centre for Teaching Excellence: Presidents' Colloquium Monday, April 26, 2:00, Humanities Theatre, with Catherine Wehlburg, Texas Christian University, speaking on "Making Assessment Meaningful". Symposium continues Tuesday with workshops on "Mapping Your Curriculum: Where Are You Going?" and "Teaching, Learning, and Assessment: A Three-Legged Stool". Details.

Opportunities and New Directions conference on research in teaching and learning, sponsored by the Teaching Based Research Group and CTE, held Wednesday, April 28. Keynote, again by Wehlburg, titled "Scholarship of Teaching and Learning: You're Already Doing It"; 25 presentations and posters by researchers. Details.

Canadian Undergraduate Technology Conference founded and organized by Waterloo students, to be held April 29-30 at Ryerson University, Toronto. Speakers come from Microsoft, Research In Motion, Xerox and other firms; attractions include the Google Case Challenge and a demonstration of Windows Phone 7. Details.


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Link of the day

Dieu sauve notre Reine

When and where

Winter term examinations through April 23. Schedule.

Extended library hours through April 23: Davis Centre library open 24 hours a day, except Sunday 2 to 8 a.m.; Dana Porter Library open 8 a.m. to 2 a.m. daily. Details.

Workshop for postdoctoral fellows: “How to Apply Successfully for Academic Positions” 12:00, to register e-mail marta@

‘Demystifying Investor Relations’ workshop by Greg Secord of Open Text, sponsored by International Association of Business Communicators, 4:00, TechTown Café, 340 Hagey Boulevard.

Star Gazing Party organized by department of physics and astronomy, 7 p.m., north campus.

Spiritual Heritage Education Network presents Peter van Driel, “The Unifying Teachings of Baha’u’llah” 7:30 p.m., CEIT room 1015.

Institute for Computer Research presents Don Batory, University of Texas at Austin, “Stepwise Parallelization of Streaming Architectures” Thursday 10:30, Davis Centre room 1304.

UW Recreation Committee presents “A Year on the Grand”, photos and stories, Thursday 12:00, Dana Porter Library room 329.

Chemical engineering seminar: Todd Hoare, McMaster University, “Engineering Smart Materials for Biomedicine” Thursday 3:30 p.m., Doug Wright Engineering room 2529.

Centre for Family Business, based at Conrad Grebel UC, breakfast seminar: “Sibling Relationships and Family Business” Friday 7 a.m., Bingemans Conference Centre.

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

Annual used book sale sponsored by Canadian Federation of University Women, proceeds to scholarship funds, Friday (9 a.m. to 9 p.m.) and Saturday (9 a.m. to 1 p.m.), First United Church, King and William Streets. Details.

Bill Oldfield, library, retirement coffee break Friday 10:00, Dana Porter Library staff lounge, RSVP ajdandyk@

Earth Day Eco-Showcase co-sponsored by UW faculty of environment, Saturday 1:00 to 5:00, Kitchener city hall. Details.

Unofficial grades for winter term courses begin appearing on Quest April 26. Grades become official May 25.

Fee payment deadline for spring term is April 26 (promissory note) or April 29 (bank transfer). Details.

UW-ACE upgrade to Angel version 7.4: system will be down Tuesday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Advances in Health Informatics Conference 2010 hosted by NIHI, WIHIR, and schools of optometry and pharmacy, April 28-30, Health Sciences Campus, Kitchener.

UW International Spouses potluck lunch April 29, 12:45, Columbia Lake Village community centre. Details.

Engineering alumni and friends reception, “Designing the Future” April 29, 6:30 p.m., Waterloo Regional Children’s Museum. Details.

OUA women’s basketball all-star game Saturday, May 1, 7:30 p.m., WLU athletic complex, admission free.

Positions available

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

• Senior electronic resource developer, Centre for Education in Mathematics and Computing, USG 11
• Evening supervisor and technical support, library circulation services, USG 5
• Library assistant, Musagetes architecture library, USG 5
• Marketing communications coordinator, co-operative and career services, USG 8

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