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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

  • Fees due next month for spring term
  • World Water Day and much, much more
  • Editor:
  • Chris Redmond
  • Communications and Public Affairs

[Hard hats and fluorescent vests]

Ready for anything in their safety gear are a group of VIPs who toured the soon-to-be-ready Engineering 6 building last week. Left to right, they are engineering dean Adel Sedra, federal science minister Gary Goodyear, provost Geoff McBoyle, and Kitchener-Waterloo MP Peter Braid. The appearance by government officials was part of a Canada-wide flurry of visits to see how Knowledge Infrastructure Program projects are coming along. Ottawa's interest in universities will likely surface again later today as finance minister Jim Flaherty presents his budget (4 p.m.).

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Fees due next month for spring term

Thousands of students are getting ready to come to Waterloo for the May-to-August “spring” term, or to return after a term away. And that means — guess what — paying their tuition and incidental fees, and in some cases also fees for residence.

“You need to become ‘fees arranged’ each and every academic term,” says a memo sent the other day to the students who are preregistered for the term that begins May 2. The place to see the size of the fee hit is Quest, the online student system. (Click Finances, then “Account Inquiry”, then “Spring 2011”, says the memo, sent out by the university’s finance office.)

Annual fee increases will show up on students’ bills for the first time, following approval by the board of governors in February. For Canadian students already enrolled, fees are going up by 4.0 per cent; for new students, they’ll rise by 4.5 per cent in “regulated” programs such as most BA, BSc and BMath programs, and 6.5 per cent in “deregulated” programs such as engineering, computer science, architecture, optometry and pharmacy. The fee increase for most graduate students and most international students is 3.0 per cent.

As a result, the per-term tuition fee could be as low as $2,692 for a Canadian student in fourth-year arts, or more than $16,000 for international students in some professional fields.

Says the memo: “The easiest way to become ‘Fees Arranged’ is by paying your fees in full. Please see Payment Options on our website.

“Your account balance may change as a result of housing or meal plan adjustments, or changes to your program, citizenship status or course load. Fees are recalculated nightly. Check your student financial account on Quest frequently for updates. The entire balance posted to your student account must be covered by payment in full or by a Promissory Note with proof of approved financial assistance and payment of any remaining balance, by the due date to avoid late fees.

“A completed payment of any remaining balance calculated on the Promissory Note is due with the Promissory Note. You will be prompted to attach proof of a completed payment when submitting the online Promissory Note. If you choose to print the form and submit it via expressmail or in our drop-box, you must attach a certified cheque, money order, bank draft, proof of completed bank payment or proof of international wire transfer for the remaining balance. Submitting a Promissory Note with acceptable proof of any of the forms of financial aid indicated on the form allows you to defer payment of that portion of your fees covered by the financial aid available to you for the term.”

The finance office doesn’t accept cash payment of tuition fees at the cashiers’ counter in Needles Hall, and also doesn’t accept personal cheques. Also new as of this term: international bank drafts won’t be accepted from outside Canada and the United States. Payments from other countries must be done by international wire transfer or Travelex bank-to-bank transfer, the memo says.

Over-the-counter and mail payments should be by certified cheque, money order or bank draft, and are due by April 25. The deadline is three days later, April 28, for bank payments (such as online transfers) and international wire transfers.

“Fill in the form correctly,” the memo advises. “Submit your documents together! We will not match them up for you. If you do not submit proof of funding with your Promissory Note, your Promissory Note will be discarded. If you do not submit a Promissory Note with your proof document, your document will be discarded.

“Promissory notes and certified cheques/ money orders/ bank drafts are date stamped upon receipt in our office and are processed in the order received. Processing may take up to five business days from the received date, particularly if you submit during the week prior to and including the due date. Please continue to check your Quest account. Your Registered Status at the top of the financial details page for Spring 2011 will change to ‘Fees Arranged’ once your payment or Promissory Note is processed.”

Because the university deals with each student on an adult-to-adult basis, but the reality is that some students do have backing from the family, the memo adds this vital request: “If your parents are paying your own fees, be sure to forward this email along with a copy of your Quest account for Spring 2011 to the person who will be making the payment.”

There’s also a special note for UW employees and children of employees: “If you want to deduct the amount of your Tuition Benefit from the amount you have to pay, your Tuition Benefit form must be submitted with a Promissory Note and proof of a completed payment for the fees not covered by the Tuition Benefit. The payment must be dated no later than the Promissory Note due date or it will be considered late. Tuition Benefit forms submitted without a Promissory Note will be discarded, unless the student’s account has already been paid in full.”

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World Water Day and much, much more

Today is World Water Day, so designated by the United Nations, and graduate students at Wilfrid Laurier University and Waterloo will celebrate with a day-long celebration, mostly in the CEIT building, that includes talks on water science, technology and policy. "Our World Water Day event will highlight university water research and raise awareness about local and global water issues," says civil and environmental engineering professor James Craig, who’s a leader of the university’s Water Institute. The day’s activity begins at 10:30 with networking and opening ceremonies led by David Rudolph, executive director of the Water Institute. Thomas Homer-Dixon, environment professor and chair of global systems at the Balsillie School of International Affairs, will give a keynote address entitled Water, Climate and Energy: Addressing Global Challenges with Local Resilience. After lunch, a graduate student research fair will be held featuring research seminars and poster presentations. Everybody’s welcome to look in.

[Munkittrick]And on this Water Day, there's news from the Canadian Water Network, a national "network of centres of excellence" that has its headquarters at Waterloo, specifically in the Research Advancement Centre on the north campus. The CWN has appointed a University of New Brunswick professor — Kelly Munkittrick (right), a specialist in the environmental impacts of industry and agriculture — to be its scientific director. He takes over from Mark Servos, scientific director since 2003. Munkittrick, who did his PhD in Waterloo's biology department in 1988, holds a Canada Research Chair in Ecosystem Health Assessment and has done research in Canada and the United States and as far afield as Chile, Bhutan and Sri Lanka.

It's also National Co-op Week, a time to celebrate co-operative education programs, which were introduced to Canada when this university launched its all-co-op engineering program in 1957. The co-op arrangement, by which academic terms alternate with terms of paid work, has now spread to all six of Waterloo's faculties, and tomorrow the university will honour a Co-op Student of the Year from each of the six. They'll be recognized for "exemplary workplace performance on a 2010 work term, along with such factors as community involvement, academic excellence and contribution to co-op education," the department of co-op education and career services says. A ceremony to introduce the six is scheduled for 1:00 Wednesday in the Tatham Centre.

Aftershocks from Japan's earthquake continue, both literally and emotionally. "My family lives in Osaka, which is far enough from the areas mainly affected by this disaster," [Japan button]says applied health sciences student Mamiko Noguchi, "but thinking about losing home, family and friends all within ten minutes — I don't know how I would feel but helpless!" So, she says, "I had to do something to help," and other members of the Konnichiwa Japan Cultural Club felt the same way. They'll have a booth in the Student Life Centre's "vendor alley" all day tomorrow and Thursday, collecting donations for Red Cross relief efforts in Japan, and folding origami cranes as a symbol of hope. The club is eager to acknowledge support already received from the Let Us Volunteer group, as well as the UW Breakers, who used Saturday's dance competition as a fund-raising opportunity for the same cause. Konnichiwa will also have a booth at today's World Water Day activities, Noguchi said.

[Waite]News from the health sciences campus in Kitchener: "Nancy Waite (left), Interim Hallman Director of the School of Pharmacy, has been selected as the 2011 recipient of the Association of Faculties of Pharmacy of Canada Bristol-Myers Squibb National Award for Excellence in Education. This prestigious award recognizes the development of major innovations in pharmacy education." Laura Manning of the pharmacy school explains that candidates are selected based on “their leadership role in the development of university teaching and learning beyond his or her courses; their teaching excellence, as recognized by peers and students; and their distinguished teaching career involving specific innovations in pharmaceutical education”. In their nomination, faculty members Jeff Nagge and Cynthia Richard highlighted "Waite’s leadership in the development of Waterloo Pharmacy’s unique curriculum, with particular emphasis on co-op, community service learning, and integrated courses. They referenced her extensive experience in curricular design and delivery, her involvement in pharmacy educational endeavours at the international level, and her willingness to support junior faculty members while allowing them the freedom to innovate."

Fund-raising for Colour Me Educated continues today — a project sponsored by the Federation of Students in support of improving access to higher education for young people from impoverished background. "From 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. in the Student Life Centre great hall," says Kirsty Budd of the Feds, "members of the uWaterloo community will have three fun ways to donate to the Colour Me Educated campaign before the final paint drop on March 30. Bid on an item in our mini Silent Auction; participate in the Coin Toss Challenge (toss your coin into the donation bucket from behind the line, and if you get it in you’ll be rewarded with a draw ballot towards the prize of your choice); or if you want to skip the coin toss and simply make a donation we will reward you with a gourmet lollipop for donations of $5 or more." Looking ahead, she adds, "Don’t forget to come out to the SLC Courtyard on March 30 at 12:30 to see which society gets to dump their colour all over University of Waterloo president Feridun Hamdullahpur, athletics director Bob Copeland and the entire Feds executive."

There's more from the Federation of Students: "After a long day surrounded by books in the Dana Porter Library, or the morning after an all-nighter finishing an essay, what pushes you to keep going?” the Feds are asking. “What do you dream of accomplishing with your education?” Students are invited to “use their creativity and answer the question: ‘What do you hope to achieve with a Waterloo education?’ to win prizes,” the Feds have announced. “The question can be answered in a variety of mediums: visual art, written, video and audio entries will all be considered.” Says Nick Soave, vice-president (education) of the Federation: “We want to know, what have you learned during your time here? Maybe you're in your last year with a job lined up or maybe you're just finishing your first year and are still dreaming of future possibilities. Either way we want to know what you hope to achieve with your Waterloo education.”  Submissions can be uploaded to the Feds’ web site; prizes include an iPad, an iPod and a Conestoga Mall gift certificate.

Central stores — the department that's responsible for recycling and storage, as well as delivery and pickup on campus — announced yesterday that it will hold another "departmental e-waste pickup initiative" April 4 through 15. It's a sequel to a similar effort this time last year that unencumbered the campus to the extent of two tractor-trailer loads. Joel Norris, assistant manager at stores, says the pickup will welcome computers and peripherals, TV sets, stereos, scanners, microwave ovens and cellphones, among other electronics. "Departments with university owned e-waste should call Central Stores at ext. 32821, as soon as possible, to be placed on a pickup list," he says. "Departments will be asked for approximate item quantities, for pickup scheduling purposes and to allocate the appropriate moving equipment. A Central Stores staff member, based on faculty and/or departmental response, will contact your department to set up the specific pickup date, time and location. This 10-day initiative will allow your department the opportunity to clear out, for disposal, e-waste and to do so without the normal paperwork requirements. Central Stores has allocated staff specifically to handle this 10-day event." He adds that at the end of the two weeks, there will be an E-waste Green Day for individual staff, faculty and the general public, who can drop off electronic junk at East Campus Hall Saturday, April 16.


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Link of the day

Diabetes Alert Day

When and where

Architecture student co-op job interviews in Cambridge, through Wednesday. Rankings open March 24-25, match results March 29.

Waterloo Centre for Advancement of Cooperative Education research seminar: Justin Friesen, department of psychology, “Do Co-op Job Ads Include Gender Stereotyped Language?” 12:30, Tatham Centre room 2218.

‘Racism on Campus’ panel discussion sponsored by Federation of Students, 3:00 to 5:00, Student Life Centre multipurpose room.

Institute of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology seminar: Robert Dawson, University of Guelph, “Variants of Cardiac Action in Heart Disease” 3:30, Chemistry 2 room 361.

Health services and other departments present David Wright, psychiatrist on staff, “Impact of Trauma: PTSD and Other Consequences” Wednesday 8:30 a.m., Math and Computer room 4061, RSVP ext. 36274. Health services will be closed until 10:10 a.m.

Engineering Design Symposium Week: electrical and computer engineering, Wednesday 9:30 to 8:00; nanotechnology engineering and software engineering, Friday 9:30 to 6:00; systems design engineering, March 28, 10:30 to 5:00, Davis Centre.

Federation of Students annual general meeting Wednesday 12:00, Student Life Centre great hall. Details.

Free noon concert: “Prokofiev Quartet No. 2 and Other Russian Gems” (violins, viola, cello) Wednesday 12:30, Conrad Grebel UC chapel.

Waterloo Institute for Complexity and Innovation seminar: Steve Purdey, University of Toronto, “Steady State Economics” Wednesday 2:00, Rod Coutts Hall room 208.

First Robotics Canada competition for high school students, Thursday-Saturday, Physical Activities Complex. Details.

Recitals by music students March 24, 28, 29 and 30, 12:30 p.m., Conrad Grebel UC chapel, free admission.

School of Computer Science Distinguished Lecture: Joe Marks, Disney Research, “Research at the Walt Disney Company” Thursday 4:15, Theatre of the Arts.

Jewish Studies lecture: Jacob Wright, Emory University, and David Novak, University of Toronto, “Must a Jew Be a Zionist to Be a Good Jew?” Thursday 7:30 p.m., Siegfried Hall, St. Jerome’s University.

Centre for Family Business, based at Conrad Grebel UC, breakfast seminar, “The Story of Cox Creek Cellars and Kamil Juices” Friday, March 25, 7 a.m., Bingemans Conference Centre.

Student Conference on International Development: “Taking More than Pictures: Conversations About Volunteerism” Friday 10:00 to 4:00, St. Paul’s U College, keynote speaker Christal Earle of Absolute Leadership Development Inc., free. Register.

Earth Hour “turn it off” observations Saturday 6 to 10 p.m., Student Life Centre (lights off 8:30 to 9:30).

Women and engineering forum March 28, 5:30, Rod Coutts Hall room 112.

‘Iron Will’ stage play about Canadian students in Haiti, presented by Mennonite Economic Development Associates, March 28, 7:30, Humanities Theatre. Details.

General application deadline for September 2011 admission is March 31 (subject to earlier deadlines for selected programs and for Ontario high school students).

PDEng alumni lecture: “Skills That They Do Not Teach in Engineering School but Are Required for Career Advancement” March 31, 11:30, Davis Centre room 1302.

Aftab Patla Memorial Cup hockey game in support of applied health sciences scholarships, March 31, 5 p.m., Columbia Icefield. Details.

Splitting the Sky (John Hill) speaks on “The Sun Dance and the Gustafsen Lake Standoff”, sponsored by department of religious studies, March 31, 7:00, Hagey Hall room 373.

Orchestra @ UWaterloo spring concert, “Jupiter & Co.”, music by Dvorak, Bartok, Wagner, March 31, 8:00, Humanities Theatre, admission free.

One click away

Waterloo grad tries to launch a national co-op job site
Background to a new Ontario tuition fee framework
Doctoral students and university teaching staff (Stats Canada)
AAAS will meet in Vancouver next winter
Six-year framework for funding Québec universities
CIGI’s insights on Japan’s nuclear crisis
Report on National Working Summit on Aboriginal Postsecondary Education
The history of CIGI’s Seagram Distillery site
University Affairs profiles Waterloo-created Top Hat Monocle
Fewer applicants for Ontario teachers’ colleges
‘Earthquakes can move Waterloo Region’
Survey says: students ‘willing to carry a share of the burden’

[W]Warrior sports

Weekly report, March 21

Badminton all-star is OUA player of the week

Pink Day is Thursday

The third annual "Pink  Day" fund-raiser to support breast cancer research, organized by Jean Zadilsky of the research office, will be held Thursday morning. Coffee break time is 10:00, in the research office boardroom in Needles Hall, when she hopes supporters will bring "a sea of pink edibles".  The winner of a "Pink Basket" raffle prize will be drawn at about 10 a.m. For more information, she's at ext. 33300.

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