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Wednesday, April 25, 2012

  • "Hottest Winter in Waterloo History" at UAE
  • Imagine Cup national finals at Waterloo
  • Presidents touch down in Brazil
  • Bud Walker named special advisor
  • Wednesday's notes
  • Editor:
  • Brandon Sweet
  • Communications and Public Affairs

"Hottest Winter in Waterloo History" at UAE

by Livia Fama, student support manager, Waterloo UAE campus

The third annual Hottest Winter in Waterloo History event took place at the Waterloo UAE campus to commemorate graduation for twenty-three second-year students who will finish their final two years at the main campus.

Faculty, staff, first-year students and even the Consul General of Canada in Dubai crowded together for the spirited ceremony in one of the campus’s majilis, the Arabic term for meeting place, where they sat on traditional cushions while enjoying refreshments and entertainment from the Waterloo UAE music club.

Campus director and professor Dr. Peter Douglas gave a speech commending the graduates for being risk-takers and embodying the Waterloo spirit.

“Starting a new campus of the University of Waterloo so far from our roots has been an experience of a lifetime for all of us,” said Dr. Douglas. “The idea of a Waterloo UAE campus in Dubai has become a success because of your pioneering spirit.”

The graduates took turns as their names were called by program and were met with rousing cheers from the audience. They received special, commemorative scarves representing both campuses, which they wore proudly to mark their Waterloo UAE experience and their foray into Canada as international students. (Pictured above are the students with director Peter Douglas and deputy director Dr. Ilham Akhundov.)

“I have always seen my life at Waterloo as a two piece jigsaw puzzle with one piece in Dubai and the other in Canada,” said FARM student and graduate, Efua Adaboa Biney-Assan. “After the Hottest Winter event, it dawned on me that I was at the end of an exciting first part of my Waterloo education — I'm very excited about going to Canada!” she said.

The graduates went out of their way to create a special, unique ceremony that included a dance in trendy, flash-mob style, where they performed synchronized routines to a mix of modern tunes and classics.

But the ceremony’s highlight was a short film produced by the graduates entitled “Curse of the Pink Tie” named for the iconic symbol of the Waterloo math department. The film pitted math and engineering students against each other in good fun, as the zombie-like “mathies” worked to convert the engineering student population.

"Though it required a lot of organization and teamwork, the second year batch decided to think out of the box and do something extraordinary,” said Chemical Engineering student and graduate, Tejas Kamath. “Despite lack of time due to our upcoming finals we managed to pull off a remarkably entertaining short film depicting the lifestyle of students at Waterloo UAE.”

The students will begin their Canadian adventure with co-op in the upcoming fall term.

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Imagine Cup national finals at Waterloo

The Microsoft Imagine Cup Canada finals are coming to the University of Waterloo on April 30. All Waterloo students, faculty, and staff are welcome to attend.

Imagine Cup is "one of the world’s premier technology competitions that challenges students to use technology to help solve some of the world’s toughest problems." On April 30, the top three teams in each category in Canada will go head-to-head at the Canadian Imagine Cup Championship. "This will be their chance to showcase their solutions, and compete for a chance to represent Canada at the Imagine Cup worldwide finals in Australia."

To help with selecting the winners, Microsoft has assembled a fantastic panel of judges featuring Michael Furdyk of Taking IT Global, Marc Saltzman the freelance journalist, author, radio and TV host, and Carol Leaman, President and CEO of Axonify.

The event gets started at 10:00 a.m. with a welcome message by Gladstone Grant, Microsoft Canada's Vice-President, Developer and Platform Evangelism. Software design student team presentations follow, and a lunchtime exhibition includes student displays and Microsoft Kinect, Windows Phone, and Windows 8 demonstrations. Windows Phone game design student demonstrations take place at 2:00 p.m., with a closing keynote address by Vice-President, University Relations Tim Jackson at 3:45 p.m.

Registration is required.

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Presidents touch down in Brazil

with material from an Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada media release

University of Waterloo president Feridun Hamdullahpur and St. Jerome's University president David Perrin are among the 30 Canadian university presidents arriving in Brazil today for an educational mission led by Governor General of Canada David Johnston.

The weeklong mission, organized by the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada, will see Canadian university leaders visit Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Campinas and Brasilia to promote Canada as a partner of choice for research, innovation and higher education. The presidents will meet with their Brazilian counterparts and announce new research partnerships and scholarship agreements.

“This is the largest international mission of university presidents in Canadian history, which speaks to the importance of building connections with this emerging economic powerhouse,” said Stephen Toope, chair of AUCC and president of The University of British Columbia. “Our focus is on establishing and strengthening partnerships in research and innovation. We will also enhance opportunities for student mobility between our countries, providing experiences that will better prepare students in both countries for the new knowledge-driven economy.”

“This mission will build on existing Canada-Brazil relationships and catalyse new ones,” said Paul Davidson, president of AUCC. “These partnerships will address the research interests of both countries and foster long-term prosperity.”

President Hamdullahpur will be participating in the Canada-Brazil Innovation Nations forum on April 27 at the Sao Paolo Hilton as a panel member in the session entitled "How Canada-Brazil University-Private Sector collaboration can drive Innovation for Commercialization."

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Bud Walker named special advisor

Bud Walker."As of May 1, 2012, Bud Walker will have a new role as Special Advisor to the Vice-President, Academic & Provost," wrote provost Geoff McBoyle in a memo distributed to faculty and staff last Friday. "At this time I would like to thank Bud for moving the University forward with regard to student issues during the last few years in his role as Interim Associate Provost Students."

Walker has been with the University of Waterloo since 1971, first as manager of student information systems, then as director of data processing, and later as director of business operations, a post he assumed in 1996. In 2009 he was appointed Interim Associate Provost, Student Services.

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Wednesday's notes

The WatCard Office will be closed all day today so that the WatCard staff can attend John Cunningham's funeral service. The office will reopen on Thursday at 8:30 a.m.

The Anatomy of Edouard Beaupré cover.English PhD candidate Sarah Kathryn York has published a novel entitled The Anatomy of Edouard Beaupré, which is, in the author's words, "an imaginative take on the Willow Bunch Giant, one of the tallest persons in history. Really, it is the story of a dying doctor whose obsession with the giant’s cadaver leads him into the mystery of Edouard’s life. Edouard was a Métis cowboy, circus strongman, sideshow “freak,” and the first of twenty children. He died in 1904, but his compelling story does not end there.”

Copies of the novel, published by Coteau Books, are now available in the university bookstore, as well as at Chapters and Amazon.


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Countdown to Congress: 30 days remaining

Congress 2012 takes place May 26-June 2, 2012, and is co-hosted by University of Waterloo, Wilfrid Laurier University and organized by the Canadian Federation of the Humanities and Social Sciences. Crossroads: Scholarship for an Uncertain World, the theme of Congress 2012, explores the real-world impact of the humanities and social sciences. Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences is the largest annual multidisciplinary academic gathering in Canada.

Factoid: Congress is officially a bilingual event. Le Congrès est officiellement bilingue.

Link of the day

World DNA Day

When and where

Grades due April 16 to May 1.

Graduate Student Research Conference, Monday, April 23 to Thursday, April 26. Details.

Unofficial grades begin to appear in Quest April 23, standings and official grades available May 22.

Spring 2012 promissory notes and payments due April 24.

Pension and Benefits committee meeting, Wednesday, April 25, 1:00 p.m., NH 3004.

Waterloo Women's Wednesday (W3) event, featuring a screening of the documentary "Miss Representation," Wednesday, April 25, 4:30 p.m., EV1-350. Free admission, light refreshments provided. All are welcome.

Opportunities and New Directions Conference, Thursday, April 26, 8:00 a.m., M3 Atrium. Opening keynote at 8:45 a.m., open to all. Details.

AHS Graduate Student Research Conference keynote address, featuring Dr. Charles Tator, "Prevention of Sports-Related Spinal Cord Injuries and Concussions," Thursday, April 26, 11:00 a.m., OPT 347. Details.

Co-operative work term ends April 27.

Canadian Undergraduate Technology Conference, April 27 to 29, University of Calgary and University of Toronto. Details.

Retail Services locations closed for inventory, Friday, April 27.

Spring term classes begin May 1.

WatRISQ presents Eike Brechmann, Department of Mathematics, Technische Universitat, Munchen, Germany, "Financial Risk Management with High-Dimensional Vine Copulas," Tuesday, May 1, 4:00 p.m., DC 1304.

David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science distinguished lecture series, featuring Jeannette Wing, Carnegie Mellon University, "Computational Thinking," Tuesday, May 1, 4:30 p.m., DC 1302. Details.

Co-op return to campus interviews begin Wednesday, May 2 to Friday, May 4 (except Architecture).

Centre for Career Action workshop (staff only) "Discovering Your Skills," Wednesday, May 2, 3:30 p.m., TC 2218.

OCUFA Status of Women workshop, "Navigating the Academy: Lessons and Strategies for More Equitable Universities," featuring a keynote address by University of Waterloo Professor Carla Fehr, Friday, May 4, 8:45 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., OBA Conference Centre, Toronto. Details.

Warrior Football Spring Camp, May 4-6 for kids ages 10-15, and Coaches Clinic, May 4-5. Details.

DaCapo Chamber Choir, based at Conrad Grebel U College, “Celebrating Home” concert May 5 (8 p.m.) and 6 (3 p.m.), St. John the Evangelist Church, Kitchener. Details.

UW Retirees Association Spring Luncheon, Tuesday, May 8, 11:30 a.m. (cash bar), 12:00 (lunch), tickets $27; presentation by retired French professor Ray Dugan, Bayeux Tapestry. Information 519-888-0334. Details.

Systems Design Engineering seminar featuring Keith Hipel, "Tackling Climate Change: A System of Systems Engineering Perspective," Wednesday, May 9, 11:30 a.m., E5 6004.

Centre for Career Action webinar (staff only), "Writing an A+ Résumé," Wednesday, May 9, 12:00 p.m. Details.

Waterloo Engineering Alumni and Friends reception, Thursday, May 10, 5:30 p.m., Daly's, Westin Ottawa, Ottawa ON. Register online.

Co-op Job Posting for main group and Pharmacy opens Saturday, May 12, 7:00 a.m. Closes 11:59 p.m. on May 15.

David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science distinguished lecture series, featuring Cynthia Dwork, Microsoft Research, "Lipschitz Mappings, Differential Privacy, and Fairness Through Awareness," Wednesday, May 16, 4:30 p.m., DC 1302. Details.

Positions available

On this week's list from the human resources department, viewable through myHRinfo:

• Records Coordinator – Registrar’s Office, USG 8
• Alumni Advancement Officer – Dean of AHS, USG 8-10
• Manager, Lending Services – Library, USG 9
• Director of Marketing and Communications – Federation of Students, USG 8
• Hardware Specialist/Lab Instructor – Electrical & Computer Engineering, USG 9
• Electronic Desktop Support Specialist – ODAA-Advancement Services, USG 9
• Advancement Training Officer – ODAA- Advancement Services, USG 9
• Liaison Librarian, Pharmacy – Library, USG 8-13
• Administrative Officer – School of Architecture, USG 12

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