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Monday, April 17, 2000

  • Seeking to head staff association
  • Tenure policy comes to senate
  • Faculty vote for both articles
  • Monday, Monday, so good to me

Small town makes big time

There was much about Waterloo in the New York Times yesterday, in a major article on the front page of the financial section dealing with the Nasdaq stock plunge and, in particular, UW spinoff company Research in Motion.

"There are anxious digerati in the heartland," wrote Gretchen Morgenson of the Times, "in places like Waterloo, Ontario, the low-key city 90 minutes southwest of Toronto that is home to Research in Motion. . . . The drama surrounding Research in Motion's movement makes it something of a microcosm of the overall Nasdaq stock market, and Waterloo -- without reading too much into the town's name -- a microcosm of Nasdaq investors."

Her article touches on the "fire" in the local real estate market, the party at Lulu's hosted by RIM when it made its first stock offering last fall (and attended by many UW students), and what the writer calls RIM envy: "In doughnut shops and fast-food places around town, people were constantly moaning about having missed out on the Big Move." Until the stock price went down, that is.

On the lighter side, I'm told that Bill Cosby was spotted wearing a black UW sweatshirt during a comedy episode that was on television Friday night.

Seeking to head staff association

For the first time in years, there's going to be an election to choose the president of UW's staff association.

Nominations closed Friday, and there are two candidates for the post of president-elect. The winner of the election will serve as president-elect in 2000-01 and president in 2001-02.

The nominees:

"Voting materials will be mailed within the next couple of weeks," says a memo from the staff association office.

Every year in recent memory there has been just one candidate for the position. Current president Paul McKone was acclaimed in 1998, and Walter McCutchan, now president-elect and about to become president, was acclaimed in 1999.

Staff association members will also be voting among three candidates to fill two positions on the association's board of directors. Seeking those seats are Bonnie Brenner, centre for sight enhancement (optometry); Brian Whitfield, engineering machine shops; and Bruce Woods, central stores.

Acclaimed to staff association positions for the coming year are Grace Schaefer (registrar's office), vice-president; Brenda Sokolowski (geography), secretary; and Doug McTavish (finance), treasurer.

Senate meets at 4:30

Today's meeting of the UW senate will start at 4:30 p.m. in Needles Hall room 3001. Other agenda items include the 2000-01 operating budget for UW, and the proposed joint program in environmental science between UW and Humber College.

Tenure policy comes to senate

UW's senate will be asked to give approval tonight to new policies on appointment, promotion and tenure of faculty members -- Policy 76 and Policy 77, replacements for the existing promotion policy (Policy 46) and tenure policy (Policy 53).

The new proposals were made public in January and discussed by senate then; they now return for approval with some changes worked out by the faculty relations committee.

"These proposed new policies appear to have been generally well received," says a memo from UW provost Jim Kalbfleisch and faculty association president Fred McCourt, the co-chairs of the faculty relations committee. The main controversial point was over appeal processes for professors who don't receive reappointment or promotion, an issue that raised some controversy as the policies were discussed across campus.

Kalbfleisch and McCourt provide this "summary of major changes" from the existing system:

Beginning in 2002 under the new policies, tenure will be awarded only at the rank of Associate Professor or Professor. Tenure criteria will be those currently in place for the awarding of both tenure and promotion to Associate Professor, and tenure candidates may choose to postpone consideration until the sixth year of probationary-term appointment.

T & P Committees and processes are to be combined, with an undergraduate and graduate student appointed as non-voting members of the University-level committee. A new tenure and promotion appeal process (Policy 77, section VII) specifies that an appeal will be heard by a tribunal with appropriate disciplinary expertise. The probationary-term reappointment process (Policy 76, section III.B) has been modified.

First probationary-term appointments will be for at least 34 months but less than 46 months ending on June 30, with reappointment consideration occurring during the final year and 12-months' notice given in the event of a negative decision. These changes regularize the handling of probationary appointments with non-standard start-dates, and align reappointment considerations with the normal fall term meetings of tenure and promotion committees. Second probationary-term appointments will be for three years. Tenure consideration normally will occur in the second year of the second probationary-term appointment, but may be postponed by the candidate until the third year. At least 12-months' notice will be given in the event of a negative decision.

If senate gives approval tonight, the policies will be on the agenda for UW's board of governors in June and will come into effect in the 2000-01 academic year.

Young professors who are now in their fifth probationary year will be considered for tenure under the old rules; those who haven't yet been here that long will come up for tenure and promotion under the new rules.

Faculty vote for both articles

Faculty members have given their approval to two proposed new articles in the Memorandum of Agreement that governs professors' employment at UW. Voting closed at noon Friday, and before the day was over, faculty association president Fred McCourt was announcing that both articles had been approved by overwhelming margins:
None of the 265 ballots returned to the Secretariat by the closing time of 12:00 noon today were spoiled. The final results of the vote count are as follows: there were 264 ballots returned in the case of Article 13 and the accompanying amendments to Article 10, with 248 yes votes, 16 no votes; there were 260 ballots returned in the case of Article 14, with 248 yes votes, 12 no votes.

Article 13 and the amendments to Article 10 are thereby declared approved, with 94% support; Article 14 is declared approved, with 95% support.

The Board of Governors will be voting on these Articles at its June 6, 2000 meeting. I am confident that it will approve them, especially given the strong support shown by faculty members.

Finally, I wish to thank those of you who took the time to cast your votes on these very important articles.

Article 13 is a new formula for faculty salaries, replacing the present UW Policy 11. Among its main features is a set of minimum salaries for the various levels of faculty appointment -- this year $35,000 for lecturers, $45,000 for assistant professors and clinical lecturers, $56,500 for associate professors and $72,500 for full professors.

Article 14 is a set of rules and procedures for UW about research integrity. It makes clear that a faculty member can be disciplined for misconduct in research, which might include plagiarism, faking the results of experiments, or having a "material conflict of interest" without revealing it.

More articles for the Memorandum of Agreement should be coming along in the months ahead. Negotiations between the faculty association and UW management are still due on the topics of "financial exigency", "program redundancy" and "layoffs", and will likely start this spring, McCourt said in the most recent issue of the faculty association's Forum.

Monday, Monday, so good to me

Winter term exams are still in progress, but attention is starting to turn towards the spring term, which will begin on Monday, May 1 -- that's just two weeks from today, friends. Schedules and fee statements for undergraduate students were mailed last week ("in separate envelopes", the registrar's office notes) and the deadline for paying fees without late charges will be May 1.

About those exams, by the way: final mark reports for undergraduate students for the winter term are scheduled to run May 12 and will be mailed to students' home addresses the week of May 15.

As instructors get ready for what they'll be teaching in the spring term, Tricia Mumby, manager of the Courseware Solutions service in UW's graphics department, has a message: "If you would like courseware produced for the spring term and haven't already contacted the Courseware Solutions office, please do so soon! Courseware Solutions is open Monday-Friday 8:30 to 5, or just call ext. 3996."

The senate committee on scholarships and student aid will meet at 10:00 this morning in Needles Hall room 3004.

They're feeling proud this morning at the UW Shop in South Campus Hall, as the shop will be presented with the Maple Leaf Award from H.T. Ecologic Products Ltd. Says Beth Alemany of the retail services department: "H.T. Ecologic created the award to recognise university and college stores that support Canadian manufacturing companies. The UW Shop is the first campus retailer to receive this award. Judy Waldeck, UW Shop manager, is supportive of Canadian manufacturers by selecting products and suppliers that are available domestically. Ninety per cent of the UW Shop apparel is made in Canada." She describes H. T. Ecologic as "a Montréal-based company with a very strong mission of social responsibility. Their Ecogold products are of superior quality and 100% Canadian made. As well, the company is very supportive of environmental and student groups. H.T. Ecologic is a proud sponsor of the University of Waterloo's Midnight Sun Solar Race Car Team."

The physics department presents a seminar today by Imshik Lee of Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. The talk starts at 2:30 p.m. in Physics room 308.


Editor of the Daily Bulletin: Chris Redmond
Information and Public Affairs, University of Waterloo
credmond@uwaterloo.ca | (519) 888-4567 ext. 3004
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