[University of Waterloo]


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About the Bulletin

Monday, February 3, 2003

  • Who's running for Fed president
  • Students explain water filtering
  • Wednesday's job fair, and more
  • We're 'Communications & Public Affairs'
Chris Redmond

February is National Heart Month

Of interest on the web

  • Québec universities say they need more money
  • Toward 2010: U of Guelph master plan
  • U of Toronto developing an academic plan
  • Andrew Pipes describes speaking at York
  • Renovations to U of Guelph library
  • US government delays foreign student monitoring
  • Web site tracks grade inflation
  • Mary Kate and Ashley aren't going to college
  • 'Great universities and their cities'
  • 'How public are our public universities?'
  • Who's running for Fed president

    As undergraduate students prepare to vote (electronic balloting runs February 7 through 12), there are four candidates to head the Federation of Students in 2003-04.

    Voting is also imminent for three vice-presidential positions: education, administration and finance, and internal. And there are contests for two seats on the UW senate and two on students' council, with a large number of other council seats filled by acclamation.

    Candidates' forums continue. Today's forum starts at 8:30 p.m. in MacKirdy Hall at St. Paul's United College. Tomorrow: 1:30 p.m., Math and Computer room 3001.
    The authoritative source for election information is the Feds' web site, and plenty of campaign coverage is appearing on 'uwstudent.org'. But I thought it might be useful to give a rundown of the presidential candidates.

    There were five originally, but economics student Andrae Martin has pulled out of the campaign. So that leaves, in random order, . . .

    Students explain water filtering

    A student team working on "biosand filtration" -- a major tool for cleaner water worldwide -- will give a presentation this afternoon and invites more people to get involved.

    [From MIT web site]

    Tommy Ngai, a graduate student in mechanical engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, gathers results from a filtration unit made to remove arsenic from the well water at a house in Parasi, Nepal.

    The team is operating as part of the local Engineers Without Borders chapter, says Jessica Rocca, EWB vice-president for events. She explains:

    "It is estimated that 80% of the world's illnesses are related to poor water supply and sanitation, thus there is a critical need to improve water treatment facilities in communities that have little or no access to safe drinking water. To address this need, slow sand filtration is an appropriate technology that is adaptable and sustainable in developing communities.

    "Slow sand filtration is one of the oldest drinking water treatment technologies, as its history spans 200 years. It produces high quality drinking water through physical filtration of particles coupled with biological treatment. It has proven performance internationally and is an appropriate technology that has been easily adapted and accepted in many developing communities worldwide.

    "There is a need to obtain a sound understanding of both the technical and social aspects of BioSand filtration and its use in developing countries. EWB Waterloo has begun a project to compile existing information about the problems and successes of BioSand filtration with regards to technical design, construction, operation, maintenance, as well as social, cultural, and political issues so that we can obtain a deeper understanding of this technology and determine areas that would be valuable to investigate through research initiatives.

    "Furthermore, we are in the preliminary stages of discussions with other NGOs to create overseas internships as we develop expertise in the area of BioSand filtration. The overall objective of the project is to improve its technical performance, reliability, cultural adaptability, social acceptance, and ultimately make this technology more accessible to developing communities.

    "Monday's presentation is targeted at undergraduate and graduate students who are interested in learning more about the technology, getting involved with research and finding out about potential internship related to BioSand filtration."

    The talk starts at 5:30 tonight in Davis Centre room 1302. Says Rocca: "Undergraduates of all years and graduate students who are interested in this technology should come out to find out how to get involved with research and hear about potential internships related to biosand filtration."

    Inevitably, a correction

    In Friday's Daily Bulletin, I mentioned the proposed fee of $5,000 a term for the Bachelor of Accounting and Financial Management program, and described it as "a fee that won't go into effect in the spring of 2004". That should have said "until the spring of 2004", of course.

    Wednesday's job fair, and more

    The winter "University-College Job Fair", sponsored by UW and other post-secondary institutions, will be held Wednesday at RIM Park in the east end of Waterloo. Shuttle buses will run from campus. I'll be saying more about the event in tomorrow's Daily Bulletin.

    In preparation for the job fair, the career services workshop series presents "How to Make the Job Fair Work for You" at 10:30 today, as well as two other sessions: "Letter Writing" at 3:30 and "Resumés" at 4:30.

    [LunarFest logo] Meanwhile, International Celebration Week is continuing -- today with an emphasis on the Chinese new year.
    My thanks to several people who sent me notes about the Chinese new year greeting that appeared Friday. They ranged from one person who complained that what I said wasn't "intelligent", to one who sounded pretty happy: "For today, you know the word 'Fu2' -- luck, happiness, prosperity, and you know to put it upside-down, meaning Fu2 has arrived, and you know the color -- the beautiful red and gold! Thank you. All the best in the new year!"
    Says the web site for this week's celebrations: "LunarFEST is a two-tiered event that will set off International Celebration Week. This campus wide event will allow both Staff and Students to explore the beauty and diversity of the University community. We will share many of the traditions and festivities of this celebration. The festivities take place in the Student Life Centre from 12 to 5 p.m. where students will be welcomed with food, games and performances. These performances include a Martial Arts Performance, Lion Dance, Fashion Show and many other exciting surprises. We welcome you to join us in this celebration!"

    Jeanne Kay Guelke of UW's geography department (and former dean of environmental studies) will be the speaker today in the Kitchener Public Library noon-hour series. She'll be talking about Utah's national parks (12 noon, at the KPL main branch).

    The executive committee of UW's senate will meet at 3:30 today in Needles Hall room 3004, to fix the agenda for the meeting of the full senate scheduled for February 17.

    Artist Rae Johnson, whose works are on display this month in the UW art gallery in East Campus Hall, will be on hand today for a reception in the gallery, 7 to 9 p.m. Also expected are Peter Warrian and Margret Hovanec, the donors who gave much of the Johnson work to St. Jerome's University last year.

    Coming tomorrow: a presentation to introduce SEDS Waterloo. SEDS is the Students for the Exploration and Development of Space, with projects that range from telescope work to a possible involvement in future experiments on the International Space Station. Saturday morning's disaster has obviously cast a pall over any discussion of space exploration; but everyone always knew it was a risky business, and the challenge continues. SEDS will talk about it tomorrow at 1:30 p.m. in the great hall of the Student Life Centre.

    A workshop introducing MERLOT, the Multimedia Education Resource for Learning and Online Teaching, is scheduled for Wednesday at 2 p.m. in the "Flex lab" in the Dana Porter Library. MERLOT is also known as a "learning object repository", and if you're a teacher, you might find its resources of interest. Reservations are suggested, since the workshop is hands-on and space is limited: phone ext. 7008.

    Saturday will be "Fantastic Alumni and Staff Day" at the Warrior basketball games against Guelph (women play at 6 p.m., men at 8 p.m., in the Physical Activities Complex). What's fantastic? Free admission for alumni, staff and their families (register online) and special activities for both kids and adults.

    Because of the "fantastic" outing on Saturday night, the staff association social committee has decided to move its group party at FASS from Saturday night to the 7 p.m. performance on Friday. Ticket deadline is Wednesday (from Verna Keller, vkeller@watserv1).

    We're 'Communications & Public Affairs'

    The department that produces this Daily Bulletin -- and provides dozens of other services to the campus, from maps to media relations -- has a new name.

    Formerly "information and public affairs", we're now "communications and public affairs", marking a reorganization and reducing any confusion with the information systems and technology (IST) department.

    [Van Nierop] We're still housed in Needles Hall, we're still headed by director Martin Van Nierop (left), we still report to the vice-president (university relations), Laura Talbot-Allan, and we're still responsible for public and media relations, special events, campus-wide communications, the UWevents database, the central web site, and some of UW's marketing and publications. There are no new staff, although some people are getting new duties.

    "The organizational changes will help us serve the university better by strategically addressing areas where we need to put new emphasis and effort," says Van Nierop. "And we're hoping the new name, emphasizing communications, will help give people a clearer idea of who we are and what our main business is."

    Major sections of the department, under its new name of C&PA, will be headed by two newly appointed associate directors:

    C&PA also includes the "publications" unit, whose best-known product is the UW Magazine. Manager of that unit is Linda Kenyon.

    Finally, there's the "internal communications" section of the department, where I will continue to be director. Internal communications produces this Daily Bulletin and its ink-on-paper sibling, the UW Gazette.

    I'm delighted to announce that my colleague Barbara Elve will have a new title befitting the job she has been pretty much doing for the past couple of years: editor of the Gazette. We'll say more about that change when the Gazette comes out this Wednesday.

    I will continue to be writing the Daily Bulletin, which will be here every morning, as it's been since 1993, with news, announcements and observations about the work and life of the university.


    Communications and Public Affairs, University of Waterloo
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