- What they mean by 'reaching higher'
- Salary talks, the olympiad, other notes
- Chris Redmond
- Communications and Public Affairs
What they mean by 'reaching higher'
Spiderman was absolutely not involved when two people climbed the chimney at the powerhouse of the General Services Complex yesterday. Rick Zalagenas, director of utilities and maintenance for plant operations, says the plant's annual two-day shutdown began late Monday, and provides an opportunity for specialists from McLean Chimney Co. to climb the 220-foot stack and do any necessary maintenance. "They've got some patching to do, and metalwork," Zalagenas said yesterday. Systems design engineering professor John McPhee took the photo from his office in Engineering 3, looking across the Davis Centre roof.
Things may seem quiet on campus, Bronwyn Burchell says in a note from the housing office, but under the surface, people are busy: "The department of Housing & Residences is as busy as ever as they prepare for the largest number of first-year students to move into residence in history. This includes the largest number of first-year students to live in Columbia Lake Village — a total of 265! Work is now in full swing as staff get ready for the 4,325 students that will be moving in over the Labour Day weekend. The week prior to orientation week is also when they start to welcome some of their student staff to campus. About 225 dons, front desk assistants and residence computer consultants will be on-campus for training in order to get everyone organized for the start of a new term. Despite all the work to be done, staff and student staff in the housing department will get some time to celebrate the end of one great term and the start of another at the right FIT Rodeo on September 1 — a staff event designed to welcome everyone back to campus and to thank them for all their hard work and dedication."
The School of Environment, Enterprise and Development is hosting its inaugural class of Master of Environment and Business students on campus until Friday. “We are excited to welcome the first class of our new master's program for environment and business,” says the faculty of environment’s interim dean, Mark Seasons. “This primarily on-line program allows working professionals the opportunity to gain the information, skills and expertise to integrate environmental management into their workplace.” The 21 students — 11 men and 10 women — come from backgrounds including large and small businesses, government and non-governmental organizations. Several have graduate degrees in a range of subjects and two have diplomas related to the environment. Launched this year, along with sustainable development training programs for professionals, the new MEB program “is an excellent expression of SEED's credo for ‘business not as usual’," says SEED director Steven Young. “SEED’s environment and business programs address the huge need for sustainability professionals by preparing graduates skilled in business and sustainability. Recent Waterloo graduates work as building specialists, environmental planners and environmental scientists.”
Friends and colleagues — and there were a lot of them — held a memorial service Saturday for L. A. K. (Lynn) Watt, who died in July. The event took place at the Perimeter Institute, where Watt had been a founding board member, and in fact a mentor to Perimeter founder (and Research In Motion chief executive) Mike Lazaridis. Winnipeg-born, Watt (right) was educated at Manitoba, Chicago and Minnesota, worked for Atomic Energy of Canada, and taught at the University of Washington before coming to the (then little-known) University of Waterloo in 1966 as a professor of electrical engineering. Before long he was involved in administration: acting dean of graduate studies in 1969-70, then dean from 1972 to 1983, among a host of other jobs. In a time when university governance was highly politicized, he chaired the committee that rewrote this university’s structure, codified in the University of Waterloo Act 1972. Work as dean at Waterloo led to work with the Ontario Council on Graduate Studies, then with government-funded research networks and the Group of Ten (later Group of 13) research-intensive universities, and also with Perimeter. An article in Friday’s Globe and Mail told more about Lynn Watt’s work and life, including his encounters with Enrico Fermi and Stephen Hawking. But it would never be possible to say enough about how much Watt contributed to building and shaping the University of Waterloo.
This week's Positions Available listing, at right, includes the job of director of institutional analysis and planning, which has been held on an "interim" basis by Mary Jane Jennings since long-time director Bob Truman left in June. The job is being advertised at USG 18, one of the highest rankings available in the staff job system, and calls for a "experience related to the oversight and supervision of the co-ordination, implementation and evaluation of a comprehensive program of institutional research. Demonstrated management and leadership expertise. Planning, data management and project management experience, including proven ability to handle multiple priorities accurately and work within strict timelines. Experience with government funding arrangement, policy analysis and quantitative analysis. . . . Ability to anticipate needs of the institution. Demonstrated ability to interact effectively with senior officers, Faculty Deans, academic support and administrative units and to represent the University externally. Experience developing and maintaining various data bases and performing necessary analyses using these data."
Salary talks, the olympiad, other notes
A 2010 salary settlement for regular staff members was announced earlier this year, following the usual talks between the administration and the staff association. The key provision: no scale increase (which would be seen as a violation of the government-imposed freeze on public sector compensation) but merit increases as usual under the university's salary system. They went into effect in June, retroactive to May 1. However, things are still up in the air for the two other full-time employee groups. Associate provost Janet Passmore said this week that talks between the university and Canadian Union of Public Employees local 793, representing workers in plant operations and food services, are expected to get going in October; CUPE 793 has been without a contract since April 30. As for faculty members' salaries, which were also due for annual adjustments on May 1, Passmore confirmed that a deadlock between negotiators for the administration and for the faculty association has resulted in a final offer selection arbitration process. An outcome — taking into account the outcome of consultations that the province is now holding about the salary freeze — will come in "October at the very earliest", she said.
The International Olympiad in Informatics, which brought young computer scientists to Waterloo from around the world last week, wound up Friday night with an awards banquet at which dignitaries presented 25 gold medals, 50 silver medals and 75 bronze medals. Top achiever of all the participants was a student from Belarus, Gennady Korotkevich, followed by Rumen Hristov Hristov of Bulgaria. The top Canadian entrant, Yu Cheng, finished sixth among the more than 300 IOI participants. The week-long IOI included two days of competition in the Physical Activities Complex, in which the students faced questions that required them to design algorithms and write programs to implement them. There was also time for social events as well as outings to Niagara Falls and Canada's Wonderland, plus a program of evening lectures. Troy Vasiga of the school of computer science was chair of the organizing committee for this year's IOI, backed up by a host of volunteers. Next year the competition is scheduled for Thailand.
The Waterloo Centre for German Studies is hosting an international conference, starting tomorrow, on "Traditions and Transitions: German Curricula". Barbara Schmenk of the Germanic and Slavic studies department says more than 35 international scholars will present their work on tertiary level curriculum development in German studies. The conference is sponsored by the DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service) and the WCGS. Keynote speakers are Claire Kramsch (University of California at Berkeley), who will present her work on the "translingual and transcultural Imagination" (Friday 4:30, Humanities room 1106), Alice Pitt (York University) on "mediations and the emotional world of language learning and teaching" (Thursday 5:00, HH 1104), and Dietmar Rösler (Giessen, Germany) on ongoing challenges in "constructing modern communicative curricula in German studies" (Saturday 12:45, Rod Coutts Hall room 301).
A few staff retirements to be noted: Wendell Prime, technologist in the kinesiology department since 1975, officially retired as of July 1. Robert McNair, multimedia specialist in environmental studies since 1982 and most recently in the school of architecture, retired as of August 1. Jim Goodwin, electrician in plant operations since 1988, also retired as of August 1. That was also the retirement date for Lynn Johnson, information systems specialist in information systems and technology since 1973, and Allan Swan, chief stationary engineer in plant operations since 2004. Marta Stagnaro, custodian in plant operations since 1998, will retire officially on September 1. So will Betsy Zanna, academic counsellor in the faculty of arts, who has been a staff member since 1978, and Frances Johnson, assistant baker in food services (Village I), who has been on staff since 1990.
And . . . I was pleased to notice, late yesterday, that the number of people "following" the tweets of @uwdailybulletin has now passed 600. Tweets are short messages on the Twitter service; in this case they carry Daily Bulletin headlines, updates and breaking news. You can read them on the web or on your cellphone.
Link of the day
When and where
Spring term marks now appearing on Quest; marks become official September 20.
Men’s hockey “shooting to score” camp for boys 5-14, August 23-27, August 30 to September 3, Icefield.
University Club closed August 23 through September 7.
Domestic hot water will run cold in all buildings inside the ring road, plus Village I, August 24-26, for maintenance on steam mains. During this period, no water from domestic hot water taps from Tuesday 8 p.m. to Wednesday 7 a.m.
R&T Park charity barbecue Thursday 11:30 to 1:00, TechTown, 340 Hagey Boulevard, all items locally sourced and processed.
Surplus sale of university furnishings and equipment, Thursday 12:30 to 2:00, East Campus Hall. Details.
Five on the Floor “farewell concert” at St. Jacobs Church Theatre, Thursday 7:30 p.m., fund-raiser for Toronto Mennonite Theological Centre, affiliated with Conrad Grebel UC. Details.
St. Paul’s University College Masters Golf Tournament, Friday, Glen Eagle Golf Club, Caledon. Details.
Physics building shut down Saturday 8 a.m. to noon (safety hazard while air supply unit is lifted to roof).
Fall term fees due Monday, August 30 (fee arrangements), September 8 (bank payment). Details.
Waterloo Stratford kickoff event: presentation and reception August 31, 11:00 a.m., Stratford city hall auditorium, RSVP 519-275-2727.
One click away
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• U of Guelph to launch Better Planet Project
• Universities’ submission as federal budget approaches
• More federal money for ‘professional skills training’
• Latest publicity for exercise and back pain research
On this week's list from the human resources department:
• Career advisor, cooperative education and career services, USG 8
• Computing and multimedia specialist, school of architecture, USG 8
• Director, institutional analysis and planning, USG 18
• Advisor (learning disability specialization), office for persons with disabilities, USG 10
• Advisor (mental health specialization), office for persons with disabilities, USG 11
• Communications coordinator, Federation of Students, USG 6
• Student program coordinator, Federation of Students, USG 6
• Communications officer, communications and public affairs, USG 9
• Resource assistant, school of architecture, USG 4
• Workshop/studio technician, school of architecture, USG 7
• Administrative assistant, food services, USG 6