Wednesday, May 26, 2010

  • Chemist gets Ontario innovation award
  • Top scholarships to six grad students
  • Four members join board of governors
  • Editor:
  • Chris Redmond
  • Communications and Public Affairs

Chemist gets Ontario innovation award

There's another honour for Janusz Pawliszyn of Waterloo's department of chemistry, who was recognized for "innovation leadership" last week as part of the Ontario Premier's Innovation Awards for 2010.

[Pawliszyn]Pawliszyn (left), who was already a Canada Research Chair, was raised to the rank of University Professor at Waterloo in March, and just last month received an award for his research from the American Chemical Society.

And now comes an award from the provincial ministry of research and innovation, announced during the annual Discovery Conference of the Ontario Centres of Excellence. Pawliszyn's honour is one of five Discovery Awards for "Ontario's most accomplished researchers". The Premier's Innovation Awards are accompanied by "financial investments — ranging from $200,000 to $5 million — to help recipients advance their cutting-edge innovations."

Says a provincial citation: "Janusz Pawliszyn is known as the inventor of Solid-Phase Microextraction, or SPME. Environmental testing agencies, forensic scientists and major global players in the food and fragrance industry use SPME to collect and extract samples for chemical testing in one efficient step. Just as significantly, Dr. Pawliszyn has pioneered an imaging detection technology, now used in the biotech and pharmaceutical industries, to rapidly develop the next generation of medications that use antibodies to fight diseases such as cancer and HIV.

"A proud inventor of important technologies now in use worldwide, Dr. Pawliszyn is a firm believer that inspiring the scientific community to strive for innovation and share solutions will make the world a better place. As he likes to say, 'Life is a laboratory. Experiment.'"

Other Premier's Awards went to researchers at three other universities and two hospitals, and to people at three high-tech companies. Com Dev International, based in Cambridge and with many research ties to UW, was recognized as the "Company with the Best Innovation" for its satellite technology for communications at sea.

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Top scholarships to six grad students

Six Waterloo graduate students, including two international scholars, have received Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships, national awards that recognize a high standard of academic achievement and leaderships skills. Valued at $50,000 annually for up to three years, the scholarships celebrate scholarly prowess in the social sciences and humanities, natural sciences and engineering, and health fields.

"All six Waterloo graduate students exemplify characteristics which underpin the Vanier program — academic excellence, research potential and leadership skills," said Sue Horton, associate provost (graduate studies). "We are delighted by their success in this prestigious award competition, and happy that the government initiated this program to support students as they embark on very promising futures."

Three winners of Vanier scholarships awarded by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council have already been publicized: Deny Hamel and Stephen Inglis, both of physics and astronomy, and Ivan Kantor of chemical engineering.

A fourth Waterloo winner of an NSERC Vanier is Lee Michael Huntington, who is described by colleagues in the department of chemistry as a truly outstanding student and an emerging scholar. Huntington has been at Waterloo since 2005, when he began his undergraduate studies in chemical physics. His love of lifelong learning led him to focus on the "development of efficient and accurate electronic structure methods for the calculation of structural, electronic and spectral properties of larger molecules."

Two Waterloo students have received Vanier scholarships from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council:

• Manjana Milkoreit researches "climate change and thresholds of co-operation and conflict in the international system." Milkoreit is an international student from Germany and a PhD candidate in global governance at the Balsillie School of International Affairs, where she works with scholars to find creative solutions to the most pressing problems of governance at the international level. 

• Ricardo Tranjan, a Brazilian national and international student, has been at Waterloo since 2007. He completed his master's degree in record time and is now a candidate for a PhD in global governance at the Balsillie School of International Affairs. He studies democracy and human rights.

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[Brick building with parking meters]

UW's Stratford campus looks like this for the present, with the recent installation of signs showing the Waterloo name. "Very exciting for us," says Tobi Day-Hamilton, director of advancement for the university's Stratford arm, "as we progress forward with lots of activity in the next few weeks." The temporary offices are at 6 Wellington Street in downtown Stratford, while a permanent building is erected. The photo is by Brandi Gillett of the faculty of arts.

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Four members join board of governors

Four new “external” members of the university’s board of governors have been announced — two appointed by the Ontario government (“the Lieutenant-Governor in Council”) and two by the board itself as representatives of the “community at large”.

All four joined the board May 1 and will be eligible to attend their first board meeting next Tuesday, June 1. Three are Waterloo graduates, and the fourth is a former faculty member. Here they are:

• Company president Gerry Remers becomes a community-at-large board member for a three-year term, replacing Serge Godin. Says a biography provided by the university secretariat: “Under the leadership of Gerry Remers, Christie Digital Systems Canada Inc. quadrupled in size and was recognized by the Financial Post as one of the top 10 places to work in Canada. At the same time, Remers (MA ’82) managed to turn the company into an even stronger supporter of community agencies.

“Remers also serves as a Renison College board member and is actively involved with college fundraising.  In addition to his volunteer commitments at Renison, Remers was also a member of the arts honorary doctorate nominating committee in the 1990s, and is a board member for Shad International, an organization dedicated to providing educational programs for youth.  He is also on the board of Communitech and chair of the Kitchener-Waterloo United Way’s technology campaign.”

• Ronald Schlegel, a former Waterloo faculty member who is now in the retirement home business, becomes a community-at-large member, also for a three-year term, replacing Ray Tanguay.  Says the published biography: “Ronald Schlegel has shown how innovation in the applied health sciences can transcend academia.  Schlegel is highly respected for the programs, firmly rooted in science, that he develops for the elderly and those who are struggling with Alzheimer’s disease. 

“As a professor in the applied health sciences faculty between 1972 and 1991, Schlegel was the architect behind the establishment of the health studies and gerontology department in 1973 as well as the development of the MA and PhD programs. In 2005, Schlegel was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Waterloo.  He also founded the Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging in 2005 and co-founded both the Centre for Applied Health Research and the Murray Alzheimer Research Education Program, the latter with Kenneth Murray. As president of Winston Park Retirement Care Community and Oakwood Retirement Communities Inc., Schlegel operates long-term care facilities in Ontario, where innovative ideas developed at UW enhance the quality of life for seniors.  Schlegel has advised government on mental health issues and served on several boards that serve both emotionally disturbed children and adults with mental illness.”

• Royal Bank of Canada executive David McKay becomes an LGIC appointee to the board for one year, filling out the term of Tim Jackson, who resigned when he became a UW executive this winter. Says the official biography: “David McKay is Group Head, Canadian Banking, responsible for RBC's Personal Financial Services and Business Financial Services businesses, as well as RBC’s Canadian sales and branch distribution.

“McKay has spent more than 20 years with RBC in many different areas including senior management of retail banking, retail banking field roles, commercial account management, group risk management and corporate banking in Canada and Japan. He is also a Director of Visa Inc., the newly created public global payments company. He holds an MBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business at University of Western Ontario and a Bachelor of Mathematics from the University of Waterloo."

• David Yach becomes an LGIC appointee for a three-year term, taking the seat previously held by Janet Passmore, who is now an associate provost at UW. Yach is senior vice-president for software at Research In Motion Limited. He received his BMath from Waterloo in 1983 and an MBA from Wilfrid Laurier University in 1988.

“After completing his undergraduate degree,” says the biography, “David went to work for Watcom, an early UW spinoff, developing language interpreters and compilers. David has been at RIM since 1998, and in addition to his management responsibilities has continued to be involved in the design (and sometimes the implementation) of the end-to-end BlackBerry solution.  He is the inventor or co-inventor on numerous patents and patent applications.”

A total of 17 such community and government representatives serve on the 36-member board of governors, along with faculty, student and staff representatives, three local politicians, and the university's chancellor and president.


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Break-ins over the weekend

“Between May 21 and May 23, Waterloo Regional Police responded to numerous break and enter incidents in and around the vicinity of the universities,” says a news release issued yesterday by the police service. “A significant number of these incidents involved student residences and occurred overnight. During these incidents, the suspects took purses/wallets, lap top computers, digital cameras, video game systems and other electronic items.

“Police continue to investigate and request anyone with information to contact the Break and Enter Enforcement Team (BEET) at 519-650-8500 ext. 3330/3306.

“Police would like to remind the public to properly secure their homes, vehicles and property while home and away from their residence. Citizens are also encouraged to report any suspicious activity or persons.”

Link of the day

Heat alerts

When and where

Procurement and contract services annual trade show in Davis Centre lounge continues: Staples, Tuesday; e-procurement, Wednesday. Details.

Co-op employer interviews begin May 26 (pharmacy), May 27 (main group).

Library workshop: “Introduction to Georeferencing in ArcGIS and Google Earth” 10:30, Flex lab, Dana Porter Library. Details.

UW Recreation Committee presents “How to Achieve and Maintain Total Body Wellness” 12:00, Needles Hall room 1116. Details.

Centre for Teaching Excellence workshop: “Understanding the Learner” 1:00, Flex Lab, Dana Porter Library. Details.

Career workshop: “Interview Skills, Selling Your Skills” 2:30, Tatham Centre room 1208. Details.

Bob Truman, institutional analysis and planning, retirement reception 3:00 to 6:00, University Club, RSVP a2morrow@

Computer Science Club presents Gerald Sussman: reception and book signing 3:30, Math and Computer room 5136; lecture, “The Art of the Propagator”, 5:00, MC 5158. Details.

Waterloo Banking Project organizational meeting for student-run financial services, 5:30, Student Life Centre room 2143. Details.

Waterloo Space Society lecture: Michael Lenick, filmmaker, “Lone Wolf Space Inventors in the Early Days” 6:00, Physics room 145.

Centre for Teaching Excellence three-day series of microteaching sessions: “Instructional Skills Workshop” May 27-31, Flex Lab, Dana Porter Library. Details.

Retirees Association spring luncheon Thursday 11:30, Sunshine Centre, Luther Village, tickets $25, information 519-888-0334.

UW Recreation Committee presents Carolyn Lewis, Service Canada, “Canada Pension Plan and Senior Income Programs” Thursday 12:00, Math and Computer room 5158. Details.

International spouses monthly gathering, Dave McDougall speaking on hiking and biking trails, Thursday 12:45, Columbia Lake Village community centre. Details.

Centre for Family Business, based at Conrad Grebel University College, gala awards night Thursday 6 p.m., Bingemans Conference Centre. Details.

‘The Peeled I’, one-man show based on the life and work of Robertson Davies, performed by K. Reed Needles, sponsored by Arbitrary Angle Theatre Company, Thursday-Friday 8 p.m., Saturday 2 and 8 p.m., Theatre of the Arts.

Health sciences campus asphalt work Friday starting 7 a.m., parking lots closed.

Niagara Falls and Winery Tour organized by Federation of Students, Saturday, bus leaves Davis Centre 9 a.m.

‘Max & Ruby: Our Favourite Things’ children’s live theatre Sunday 1:00, Humanities Theatre. Details.

International Green Energy Conference June 1-3, Arts Lecture Hall. Details.

Waterloo tweets

• "Can't tell you why yet... But I'm trying to find the messiest staff member's desk on campus. Any thoughts?"

• "On the bright side, #uwaterloo salary structure means most staff will get a tiny raise and a pat on the head this year."

• "5 hours of tours later I can honestly say that we'll have some amazing students here next year."

• "I've come to the final decision that I will not be attending my convo. $700 for a wknd trip to the school gym? No thx."

• "Science CnD volunteer signups are now available! Check it out at the CnD door in B1 (outside B1-271)!"

• "The main entrance of DP is now closed for the walkway renovation."

• "I thought they paved Columbia Street last year."

The Daily Bulletin is on Twitter too.

Positions available

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

• WatPD instructional support coordinator, associate provost, USG 8
• Client support specialist, Institute for Quantum Computing, USG 5
• Graduate program coordinator, English language and literature, USG 6
• Supervisor, food services, USG 7
• Assistant area manager, food services, USG 9
• Communications and strategic planning manager, Centre for Business, Entrepreneurship and Technology, USG 8

Yesterday's Daily Bulletin