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Thursday, August 3, 2000

  • UW plays role at Stratford Festival
  • First-year numbers close to target
  • TRACE fosters professional links

[Seven kids and two leaders]
Campers on campus. From primary camp for children in grades one and two, to ExXtreme! 2 camp for teens in grades nine to OAC, Engineering Science Quest is in full gear this summer, with programs from July 10 to September 1 providing a fun, hands-on introduction to science, math and engineering. Some 40 UW students manage and run the non-profit organization.

UW plays role at Stratford Festival

Enriching the experience of theatre goers at the Stratford Festival this season will be a coterie of UW faculty, weighing in with talks, program notes, a university credit course, as well as a conference on the short story in Canada.

Table Talk -- part of Festival Fringe -- serves up a buffet lunch or dinner in the Paul D. Fleck Marquee and "an informal lecture by a leading scholar focusing on one of the productions on the 2000 playbill." UW classical studies professor Sheila Ager will speak on Medea,and St. Jerome's English professor Ted McGee will discuss The Three Musketeers.Both are also contributing program notes for the plays.

Ager's talk today at 5:30 p.m., "The Monster Under the Marriage Bed," explores Euripides' Medea,presented at Stratford this season in Robinson Jeffers' translation of the Greek original.

"Medea's tale is Greek myth, but the monster here is no mythical dragon," says Ager in the program notes accompanying the production. "We cannot leave the theatre when it is over and say, 'Don't be frightened, there's no such thing'."

The "thing" she refers to is "the terrible fact... that parents do sometimes kill their children -- some physically, others in more subtle ways." The myth of Medea, says Ager, "is a scenario of marital love and hate that could be played out in any era."

In his lecture on August 9, McGee -- a member of the Stratford Festival board of governors for seven years and now a festival senator -- examines "the historical material with which Dumas began when he wrote The Three Musketeers,especially the struggles for honour, love, and power on the part of King Louis XIII, Queen Anne, Cardinal Richelieu, and the Duke of Buckingham.

"What Dumas ignored in the historical record is no less important than what he decided to use," he says cryptically, "to transform history into romance -- romance as one finds it in boys' adventure stories, rather than in the world of Shakespeare or Harlequin."

Shakespeare in Performance (English 364), a university half-credit course, will be offered for the second year this month, in a partnership between the Stratford Festival and the universities of Waterloo and St. Jerome's.

McGee will teach the "historical, theoretical and analytical introduction to Shakespeare in performance" with students attending guest lectures by academics and members of the Stratford company, as well as performances of current productions. The course runs from July 31 to August 18, and attracts English teachers and Shakespeare enthusiasts, as well as university students.

Wild Writers We Have Known: A Celebration of the Canadian Short Story in English, on September 21 to 24, will bring together some of "the most dynamic and inventive writers working in the short-story form today."

Organized by the editors of The New Quarterlyand The Porcupine's Quill Press, the event will be held at the Festival Theatre in Stratford, with a number of UW people playing key roles, including PhD student Sandra Sabatini, and TNQeditors McGee, Kim Jernigan, John Vardon (a Renison College lecturer), and Peter Hinchliffe (a St. Jerome's English professor).

The series of lectures, readings and responses, panel discussions, and dramatic performances is designed to appeal to "students and teachers of literature and creative writing, to writers and to those keen readers who want an insider's view of the writing life and of the peculiar excitement of finding just the right word."

For tickets to Stratford productions, Table Talk sessions, or the Wild Writers conference, phone the box office at 1-800-567-1600.

First-year numbers close to target

Pre-registration by first-year students is now at 97.6 per cent of the November 1 target, and "will continue to show a steady increase in most faculties throughout August and early September," says director of admissions, Peter Burroughs.

With the current figures, he's predicting "we should meet if not slightly exceed our goal, given a number of historically based factors." As of July 27, 4,023 newcomers had pre-registered. The target fall enrolment has been set at 4,120 first-year students.

A break down by faculties shows that applied health sciences has already exceeded its goal with 103.6 per cent of its target of 277 students pre-registered. Engineering has also pre-registered more frosh than expected -- 846 (100.7 per cent) of its target of 840 students.

Among other faculties, mathematics is at 99.1 per cent of the target enrolment of 1,000 students, environmental studies at 98.9 per cent of the 281 students anticipated, arts at 97.1 of its 1,117 target figure, and science at 89 per cent of the 600 students expected. Only 40 per cent, or two of the five students expected to enrol in independent studies have pre-registered.

TRACE fosters professional links

School of architecture professor Terri Meyer Boake is profiled on the current TRACE Instructional Development Grant Recipient Highlight Website. With TRACE funding, Boake was able to attend conferences in her field, which "represent a unique and unparalleled opportunity for research and academic development, provide experience, support, ideas, and create a nurturing intellectual environment."

From the Website:

With the help of a TRACE Instructional Development Grant in 1999, Boake was able to participate in two such conferences: The American Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA) Technology Conference in Montreal, Quebec, followed by the Society of Building Science Educators (SBSE) Education Retreat in Tadoussac, Quebec. At the Montreal Conference Boake presented two teaching based papers. The first, "Measuring a Building's Vital Signs: Cold Climate Case Studies: Green on the Grand, Waterloo" discussed the research and development of a building performance case study carried out by students taking Arch 366: Energy in Design during the Winter 1998 term.... The case study won an Honorable Mention in the Vital Signs Student Competition for 1998. Boake has used TRACE Instructional Development Grants in the past to attend Vital Signs workshops to learn how to use such testing equipment in the curriculum.

The second paper "Piercing Skin: Significance~Light~Tectonics" presented student design projects that were created within the second year architecture design studio and Energy in Design. The conference provided an opportunity to discuss the successes of physical modeling as design investigation.

At the SBSE Retreat at Tadoussac the discussion focussed on the successes and failures of various methods of teaching architecture. Faculty from 25 schools across the U.S. and Canada compared existing curriculum formats: those where core courses and design studios are substantially integrated; those where core courses and design studios are entirely separate; and, those where the two streams are separate but whose topics interconnect at strategic points throughout the degree. As the integrated design studio model was concluded to be the most successful, the topic of integrated design studio teaching was set to be expanded upon for the 2000 retreat. Boake chaired a session titled "Measuring the Concise Curriculum: Teaching as the Lone Ranger". Issues associated with limited faculty to teach architectural and environmental technology were looked at. The discussion centered around essential topics and the most effective means to deliver the information....

Anyone holding an ongoing teaching appointment at UW is invited to apply for an instructional development grant. For more information, contact TRACE by email or calling ext. 3132.

And this just in...

The retail services department is holding its annual staff meeting this morning, which means that the stores it operates -- the Bookstore, UWShop, Computer Store, and both locations of Techworx -- will open at noon.

Barbara Hallett

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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