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Monday, January 21, 2013



  • Faculty of Arts launches mentorship program
  • Selling sustainability by meeting demand
  • Student teams looking to broaden membership
  • Monday's notes


  • Editor:
  • Brandon Sweet
  • Communications and Public Affairs


Two Canada geese discuss questions about arts studies and how the Ask Arts Alumni program can help.
Arts launches mentorship program

The Faculty of Arts launches its Ask Arts Alumni mentorship program today. The program is being held online in a series of forums that will allow current Arts students the opportunity to ask questions to Arts alumni on a variety of topics. Students will submit their questions online within a topic area and each mentor will provide a response to the question.

Forum topics include:

  • Adjusting to University Life
  • Picking a Major/Course Selection
  • Co-op Jobs
  • Career Planning
  • Graduate Studies
  • International Experience
  • Free Discussion

There will be two or more active mentors per topic, per term. The mentors are alumni from across all Arts disciplines currently working in a multitude of careers, providing students with a wealth of information to draw on.

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Selling sustainability by meeting demand

by Stacey Ash, Director, External Communications, Communications and Public Affairs

Successfully communicating sustainability initiatives is a matter of transparency and meeting customer expectations, according to a pair of high-profile speakers at a Sustainable Waterloo Region education forum hosted by the University of Waterloo on Thursday.

David Robinson, regional sustainability and community coordinator with Mountain Equipment Co-op, says that environmentally sustainable and socially responsible business practices are expected by the more than 3.6 million members of the outdoors equipment co-operative. While creating environmentally friendly stores and products may cost more initially, Robinson says the company sees the payoff in consumer loyalty, energy cost savings, and steadily increasing numbers.

Scott McDougall, a well-known sustainability and environmental leader, says that with government focus on environmental issues on the wane, responsibility for change rests with the business community. McDougall, whose former company TerraChoice Group Inc., popularized the Seven Sins of Greenwashing, says strong evidence shows a growing appetite for environmentally sustainable products and practices.

About 100 people attended the education forum in the Festival Room at South Campus Hall, hosted by Ian Rowlands, professor of environment and resource studies. Those attending including representatives of leading businesses, local government, institutions and community-based organizations that are part of the Sustainable Waterloo Region’s Regional Carbon Initiative. The program, which University of Waterloo joined as an observing organization in 2012, encourages businesses and organizations to make their operations more sustainable by reducing greenhouse gas emissions.


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Student teams looking to broaden membership

by Russell Wong, Manager of Marketing and Communications, Faculty of Engineering

On Tuesday, January 22, the Student Design Centre (SDC) is hosting an open house to recruit new members for Waterloo’s 20+ design teams. If you’re a student in AHS, Arts, Environment, Math, or Science who wants to work in the technology sector, you should check it out. The open house will take place from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

While most students involved in the SDC are engineers, the teams require a wide range of skills and perspectives to run smoothly. “You don’t have to be an engineer to work with engineers,” says Peter Teertstra, Director of the Student Design Centre. “Whether it’s a student team, a start-up, or an industry giant, every organization requires a mix of technical and non-technical expertise to be successful.”

In addition to designing and building their projects, students are responsible for the complete management and operation of their teams. As a result, the team members are eager to involve students from all of Waterloo’s faculties, participating in areas such as:

  • Business and financial management
  • Marketing, professional writing, and creative design
  • Communications and public relations
  • Sponsorship and fundraising
  • Community outreach

All undergraduate and graduate students are welcome to join, and no prior experience is necessary. Get in on the ground floor with newer teams such as Aquaponics and Waterloo Hybrid, take on advanced marketing challenges with established groups such as the Alternative Fuels Team, or work closely with world-changing organizations like Engineers Without Borders!

Visit the SDC website to see what teams might interest you, and contact the team leaders if you can’t attend the open house. You’ll become a key member of the Student Design Centre, learning how to work with engineers and becoming business professionals. In the process, you’ll gain skills and experience that make all the difference to technology companies looking for people just like you.


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Monday's notes

Ginny Dybenko speaks at the Barnraiser Award luncheon."One of our own received the Barnraiser Award Thursday for community leadership," writes Beth Cotter of the Waterloo Stratford Campus. She was writing about Ginny Dybenko, Executive Director of the Waterloo Stratford Campus, who accepted the award at a special luncheon presented by the Waterloo Region Record at the Waterloo Region Museum.

"Ginny has been a tireless volunteer and brings a positive energy to all her endeavours. Her nominators praised her as an inspiring leader, a mentor, volunteer, philanthropist and “connector extraordinaire,”" writes Cotter. "We asked her about the power of community and she was effusive about how people in this region are always willing to extend a hand to help others out, and that's part of what motivates her to keep giving her time and energy."

The highlight of the event was a video tribute from Governor General of Canada David Johnston. In the video, His Excellency praised Ginny for her passion to create a better Canada and her leadership at the Waterloo Stratford Campus to inspire others to give of their talents to build strong communities.

The University of Waterloo Staff Association (UWSA) has organized a Let's Talk event that will take place tomorrow from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. at Bon Appetit in the Davis Centre. Staff association President Carlos Mendes, Executive Manager Gail Spencer, and Administrative Assistant Melissa Holst will be present and ready to make your acquaintance and hear your questions, concerns and ideas. This is the first of a monthly series of Lets Talk lunches that will be held at various locations around campus and give staff members a chance to meet some of the association's board and staff.

Attention all co-op students: Waterloo Professional Development (WatPD) will be giving away free pizza and a chance to win a $25 Retail Services gift card in exchange for feedback on your co-op experiences. Why, you may ask? Waterloo Professional Development courses are in the process of being redeveloped, and WatPD would like to gather more student-focused experiences and feedback. The feedback sessions are taking place today and tomorrow near the C&D inside Carl Pollock Hall from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., and on Thursday and Friday this week in the Student Life Centre's Great Hall from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

"The first PD courses introduce co-op students to the rollercoaster that is co-op," reads the announcement. "Your experiences are valuable to new students entering the program, and sharing them is a great way to benefit your peers. Let them know what you’ve gained and what you wish you knew before entering co-op!"

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Link of the day

Errol Barrow Day

When and where

Alzheimer's Awareness Month Public Lecture and Exhibition, Monday, January 21, 10:00 a.m., DC 1302. Details.

Renison Annual Book Sale, Monday, January 21 to Friday, January 25, 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., outside the Lusi Wong Library. Details.

Senate meeting, Monday, January 21, 3:30 p.m., NH 3001.

Feds' election all-candidates meeting, Monday, January 21, 4:00 p.m., SLC 2134/2135.

Student Services Fair, Tuesday, January 22, 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., Student Life Centre Great Hall.

Student Design Team Open House Recruitment Fair, Tuesday, January 22, 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., E5-1st floor.

Chemistry Department Seminar Series featuring Prof. Joe Gilroy, Department of Chemistry, Western University. "The Reactivity of Dicarba[2] metallocenophaneson," Wednesday, January 23, 2:30 p.m., C2-361.

OHD "Retirement 101" workshop, Wednesday, January 23 and three consecutive Wednesdays after, 7:00 p.m. Details.

CECA Volunteer and Internship Fair, Wednesday, January 23, 11:30 a.m., SLC Great Hall.

Noon Hour Concert Series, Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition, featuring Renee Kruisselbrink, solo piano, Danzas Argentinas—Ginastera, Wednesday, January 23, 12:30 p.m., Conrad Grebel chapel.

Research Matters - Life in 2030, Wednesday, January 23, 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., The Tannery. Details.

WISE Lecture Series featuring Mr. Chris Holly, Branch Head, Research &Technology Resource Development, Policy Division, Alberta Energy, "Alberta's Strategic Research Directions In Energy Development," Thursday, January 24, 10:00 a.m., DC 1304. Details.

Observations and Free Inquiries seminar featuring Hamid Tizhoosh, Systems Design Engineering, "Philosophy of Mind - Serious investigations or intellectual games," Thursday, January 24, 5:30 p.m., E5 6004. Details.

Arriscraft Lecture featuring John van Nostrand, "Settlement/ reSettlement," Thursday, January 24, 6:45 p.m., University of Waterloo School of Architecture. Details.

Drop, no penalty period ends, Friday, January 25.

Chemistry Department Seminar Series featuring Prof. Michael Wolf, Department of Chemistry, University of British Columbia, "Photofunctional Conjugated Materials," Friday, January 25, 10:30 a.m., C2-361.

14th annual Fantastic Alumni, Faculty, Staff and Retiree Day, Saturday, January 26, 2:00 p.m., Physical Activities Complex. Details.

CIGI Collaborative Research Awards (CRA) information session, Wednesday, January 30, 2:00 p.m., Balsillie School of International Affairs room 1-23. Details.

Cheriton School of Computer Science Distinguished Lecture Series featuring Renée Miller, University of Toronto, "Big Data Curation," Wednesday, January 30, 3:30 p.m., DC 1302.

Arriscraft Lecture featuring Jennifer Keesmaat, "Practices in City Building," Thursday, January 31, 6:45 p.m. Details.

Science and Technology in Society Collaboration and the Philosophy Department present Dr. Nancy Tuana, "Coupled Ethical-Epistemic Issues in the Climate Sciences," Friday, February 1, 3:30 p.m., HH 334. Details.

PhD Oral Defences

Chemistry. Brian Ellis, "Synthesis, Electrochemistry and Solid-Solution Behaviour of Energy Storage Materials Based on Natural Minerals." Supervisor, Linda Nazar. On deposit in the Faculty of Science graduate office, ESC-254A. Oral defence Friday, January 25, 3:00 p.m., C2 361.

Electrical & Computer Engineering. Arash Tabibiazar, "Statistical Filtering for Multimodal Mobility Modeling in Cyber-Physical Systems." Supervisor, Otman Basir. On deposit in the Faculty of Engineering graduate office, PHY 3004. Oral defence Wednesday, January 30, 9:00 a.m., EIT 3142.

Mechanical & Mechatronics Engineering. Yasaman Daghighi, "Induced-Charge Electrokinetic Motion of Heterogeneous Particle and Corresponding Applications." Supervisor, Donqing Li. On deposit in the Faculty of Engineering graduate office, PHY 3004. Oral defence Thursday, January 31, 10:00 a.m., E5 3052.

Biology. Brian Chow, "Stress Physiology of Bears: Cortisol Dynamics and Identification of Novel Serum Proteins." Supervisor, Matt Vijayan. On deposit in the Faculty of Science graduate office, ESC-254A. Oral defence Thursday, January 31, 1:00 p.m., EIT 1014.


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