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Friday, January 3, 2003

  • New questions in staff appraisal form
  • German studies centre on the horizon
  • National volleyballers try out here
Chris Redmond

Western Michigan U marks its 100th

[Snow on the Dana Porter Library]

For the record, about the Rhodes

UW has had not one, not two, but three Rhodes Scholars, the new issue of the UW Magazine reveals, correcting misstatements that have appeared in various places, including the Daily Bulletin.

Following up the news of the most recent scholar to head from UW to Oxford, political science graduate Mark Schaan, the magazine (and the Daily Bulletin) had earlier said that the only previous Rhodes winner from Waterloo is Michael Albert, BMath 1980. In fact, there's a third one: David Cash, BMath 1988. "At Waterloo," says the magazine, "Cash captained the swim team and won the Samuel Eckler Medal as outstanding graduating student in honours actuarial science. At Oxford he attended St John's College and received an MSc in statistics. He now lives in Bermuda (his birthplace), where he is chief actuary and chief risk officer for Endurance Specialty, a recently established insurance company."

New questions in staff appraisal form

There will be some new questions on the form that managers across campus will follow over the next few weeks as they meet with staff to do annual performance appraisals.

A change to the form was approved by members of the university's staff relations committee just before the Christmas break, says Neil Murray, assistant director of human resources.

"There was a desire to provide an opportunity for staff to provide feedback to their manager," says Murray, pointing to a recent staff association survey of the workplace "climate". The survey found keen interest among staff in being able to comment on their managers in some way as part of the annual appraisal process.

What the SRC came up with was a rewriting of the section of the current appraisal form that's entitled "Areas of Interest and Concern". Says Murray: "It will be changed to Working Environment, with six questions to prompt discussion. The current section is optional but the committee feels strongly that although nothing needs to be committed to writing, a discussion based on the revisions should take place. . . . The intent is to provide these questions as a way to initiate discussion in which a staff member can provide information and feedback to their manager."

The "Working Environment" section will now provide these "suggested questions for discussion during the performance appraisal interview":

Murray says the final work is being done on the "guidelines" for doing this year's performance appraisals, and they should be available to managers next week. Appraisals will be due in mid-March as they are every year.

German studies centre on the horizon -- from the 2001-02 donor report issued by UW's development office

In the spring of 2000, Marga Weigel, PhD 80 (German), was excited to learn about a plan for the Waterloo Centre for German Studies at the University of Waterloo. While the idea was being discussed and refined at UW, Weigel was busy selling the concept to the members of the German-Canadian Business and Professional Association of K-W, of which she is currently president.


James Skidmore of the Germanic and Slavic department is acting director of the planned centre for the next six months, while David John is on sabbatical leave

By April 2001, key members of the German community had been identified as critical volunteers for the success of this project. At a meeting in the Doris Lewis rare book room in the Dana Porter Library, supporters viewed the archival history of German-speaking families from Kitchener-Waterloo and enthusiastically endorsed a campaign for the Waterloo Centre for German Studies.

The volunteer members of the steering committee are:

The committee is rounded out with David John of the department of Germanic and Slavic languages, president David Johnston, Linda Kieswetter, Campaign Waterloo director, and Debra McGonegal, development officer for the faculty of arts.

[Tuerr] As of April 30, 2002, the committee had received commitments and pledges of $625,000 towards the $3 million endowment fund for a directorship of the Waterloo Centre for German Studies and the initiation of programming. Each of the members of the board has made a personally significant pledge and has actively spread the word amongst the German community.

The major pledge to date has come from Paul Tuerr. (left) He was born in Yugoslavia in 1920 and moved to Germany at the age of 19. After being released from a World War II prisoner of war camp, Tuerr continued his education. He received a degree as a structural and architectural engineer in 1947 and one year later emigrated to Canada. Seven months after Tuerr arrived in Kitchener, he borrowed $1,000 from a family friend and started his own construction company.

Paul Tuerr Construction Limited operated initially out of a small room in Tuerr's sister's house on Mill Street. The company's first project was a three-bedroom home. Paul Tuerr Construction Limited celebrated its 50th anniversary on June 23, 1999. The company has developed more than 1,000 acres across Waterloo Region, including Huron Business Park and Mannheim Millennium Estates.

Notes for the start of the term

The bookstore (and the UW Shop and TechWorx) are open regular hours today and Saturday. Extended beginning-of-term hours will be in operation Monday through Thursday: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. each day.

Warrior sports are gearing up again, and the men's hockey team will play an exhibition game against the Senior A Cambridge Hornets on Sunday at 7:30 p.m. at the Columbia Icefield. The men's basketball team is at a tournament at Dalhousie University this weekend, and the men's volleyballers are at a tournament at York.

Reminder of a major event at the beginning of the winter term: former prime minister John Turner will speak (about Sir John A. Macdonald) on Thursday at 4 p.m. in the Theatre of the Arts. Admission is free.

National volleyballers try out here -- from Chris Gilbert, athletics and recreational services

Team Canada Women's Volleyball will be hosting its annual Identification Camp for the first time at UW, on January 4-5, 2003. Considered one of the best indoor volleyball facilities in Canada, the Physical Activities Complex and the UW campus will serve as an excellent setting for these young elite athletes.

Team Canada Women's Program is trying to give opportunities for athletes who are interested in the 2003 Junior and Youth National Team Programs by beginning the identification process for selection. National Team programs will be operated for the next two-year cycle, with the second year being a competition within the NORCECA's Zone where they will attempt to qualify for the world championships sponsored by the FIVB.

[Surrounded by yellow shirts]

Coach Jason Grieve in a huddle with members of his Warrior team

Warrior women's volleyball head coach Jason Grieve is the director for the ID camp and is excited to be hosting this event. "It is always fulfilling as a coach to work with young athletes who are so highly motivated and energized. To bring 40-50 of the elite 13-16-year-olds in Ontario to Waterloo and UW is a sign of growth and opportunity in the K-W volleyball community."

In the camp there will be physical testing, skill learning, current information about the Youth and Junior programs, competition and some educational talk sessions. Coaches will use this camp to observe and identify athletes for invitation to future camps. By attending these camps the athletes will show that they are seriously interested in being part of the process for final selection and be able to compare themselves to other athletes. At this point, athletes will not be selected for their respective program but they will be observed throughout the year. For many of the athletes, being identified early will help in the final selection process.

Coach Grieve helped in establishing the first of the Team Canada ID camps in Saskatchewan two years ago. The quality of the camp was evident as Saskatchewan placed nine athletes in the Junior and Youth Programs in 2002. This accounted for nearly 40 per cent of all the athletes in both programs combined, not bad for a province with a population of around 1 million. Grieve added, "There is specific selection criteria that the coaches will adhere to. In the end any names forwarded must be in agreement amongst all the coaches participating."

The Junior team will be made up of athletes born in 1986 and 1987, while the Youth team will be made up of athletes born in 1988 and 1989.


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