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Monday, June 9, 2003

  • 20,000 young people consider UW
  • Faculty meet to talk salaries
  • Committee seeks views on dean of arts
  • Convocation stars offer lectures
  • Hockey coach joins athletics staff
Chris Redmond

Whit Monday, the day after Pentecost

Call centre opens

The "call centre" that raises millions of dollars for UW, through appeals to alumni and other friends of the university, will hold a grand opening today following renovations and the installation of new software. Invitations for the event were graced by a cheerful photo of six of the students who staff the call centre each evening.

In 2002-03, the year that ended April 30, callers collected $4.7 million in gifts and pledges, says Bob Copeland, UW's director of annual giving. That's up by 14 per cent from the previous year.

Tonight's celebration starts at 5:00 in South Campus Hall.

20,000 young people consider UW

A record number of young people -- the so-called Ontario "double cohort", and teenagers far beyond this province as well -- have another few days to decide their future. June 16 is the official deadline for saying yes or no to offers of admission to UW (and other Ontario universities). Most of the offers went into the mail a week ago today.

Peter Burroughs, the director of admissions, says a total of 20,738 offers of admission have been sent out. Most are for first-year studies starting in September, although 437 of them instead offer places in the math faculty in January 2004.

"At this time last year, the University had made 14,563 offers," Burroughs says in a memo, and goes on: "There are a number of reasons for this significant increase . . . including the fact that our overall institutional admission target is almost 17% greater than 2002."

A good many of the offers are going to people who ranked UW programs fourth, fifth, sixth or even higher when they applied, probably because of concern that in the "double cohort" year their first and second choices might fall through. "The rate of confirmation from these applicants has been historically very low," says Burroughs -- in other words, most of them will likely get offers that they like better than Waterloo's, and won't come here even if they're given the chance.

He also writes: "The Faculty Admission Committees working in cooperation with the Faculty Assistant Registrars have based their strategy for meeting admission targets on historical show ratios. These ratios are based on a number of factors, the most important of which is application choice. Although there are many new factors that may influence the confirmation rates this year, including the uncertainties of the 'double cohort' population, those involved in determining strategies for meeting admission targets are reasonably confident that our goals will be met."

His memo lists the number of offers made for programs in each faculty, and also the approximate OSS admission average ranges" for this year. "There is a great deal of individual selection of applicants based on factors other than marks," he stresses, "so there is no precise cut-off."

Here's the list: applied health sciences, 1,779 offers, to students with marks above the "mid 70s to high 80s"; arts, 6,239 offers, "low 80s to low 90s"; engineering, 1,885 offers,, "low 80s to low 90s"; environmental studies, 1,325 offers, "mid 70s to low 80s"; independent studies, 2 offers, "low 70s"; mathematics, 3,760 offers, "low 80s to low 90s"; science, 5,156 offers, "mid 70s to mid 90s"; software engineering, 155 offers, "low 90s".

Burroughs notes: "Over the next few weeks, we will continue to make offers of admission to non-OSS applicants" -- those who don't come from Ontario high schools -- "until it is determined that Faculty and program targets have been met."

Faculty meet to talk salaries

Members of the UW faculty association have been invited to a special closed meeting on Thursday to talk about salary negotiations.

Here's how the association describes the invitation:

In late winter, the administration approached the FAUW to discuss salary negotiations for the years 2004 and 2005 in order to assist the administration in its advance planning. The Board agreed to these negotiations and appointed Metin Renksizbulut (chief negotiator) and Bill Power as its negotiators with Catherine Schryer, the FAUW President, as an external member. The administration's negotiators consisted of Alan George (chief negotiator) and Bruce Mitchell with the VP/ Provost, Amit Chakma, as an external member.

The negotiations were concluded expeditiously and positively. A draft agreement has been reached.

Normally, there is general discussion of compensation negotiations at the FAUW General Meetings in late November and early April. This year, because of the timing of the negotiations, faculty members have not been afforded this opportunity.

It should be noted, as well, that the proposed salary settlement has some new language that will interest many faculty members.

Because of its desire to inform its members, the FAUW Board has decided to hold an Open Board Meeting on June 12 at 10:30 a.m. in MC 2066 for members of the Faculty Association only. Members are defined as those faculty members who have actually signed application forms to become members of the Association. The meeting will be held as a confidential session.

Pat Moore, the faculty association's secretary, notes that "Faculty who are unsure if they are members can contact me at ext. 3787 to clarify their status. If non-members wish to join so that they can attend the meeting, they can obtain a membership form from me, download one from our Web site or fill one in before the meeting starts in MC 2066."

Committee seeks views on dean of arts

The nominating committee for the position of dean of arts has held its first meeting, says a memo issued late last week by the provost.

The memo quotes from UW's Policy 45 on how deans are chosen: "The first charge to the nominating committee will be to solicit, with the prior knowledge of the incumbent, the opinion of faculty members and other persons affected with respect to the reappointment of the incumbent. This soliciting of opinion shall include a secret mail

Bob Kerton, dean of arts since July 1999

ballot of the regular faculty members of the Faculty. If the incumbent is found to be generally acceptable, the committee shall then determine the incumbent's willingness to accept reappointment. If the incumbent indicates willingness to accept, the committee shall recommend reappointment to the President without considering other candidates. Upon receiving the report of the nominating committee and the recommendation of the Senate, the President shall recommend an appointment to the Board of Governors."

And so, it says, "You are invited to provide your written comments/views concerning the reappointment of Dean Kerton, or the deanship in general, to any member of the Nominating Committee identified below; if you prefer, your submission may be directed to the Committee Secretary, Secretariat in Needles Hall. Your comments will be held in confidence within the Committee and should be received not later than Friday, June 27, 2003.

"The ballot required will be distributed when the Committee completes the consultation described above."

Members of the committee:

Convocation stars offer lectures

It's convocation week, with roughly 3,000 students expecting to receive degrees and diplomas at five ceremonies. Formalities will be held Wednesday afternoon for applied health sciences, environmental studies and independent studies; Thursday afternoon for arts; Friday afternoon for science; Saturday morning for mathematics; and Saturday afternoon for engineering.

At least three of the people who will be at convocation to receive honorary degrees and other awards are being called on to give academic talks while they're here. All three presentations are scheduled for Friday.

There will be more details later in the week, but briefly:

Margaret Wright of New York University, here to receive an honorary degree in math, will give a special lecture under the title "The Interior Point Revolution in Constrained Optimization". She'll speak at 10:30 Friday in Davis Centre room 1302.

Lotfi Zadeh, "the father of fuzzy logic", receiving an honorary degree in engineering on Saturday, will speak about his work -- "the origin of fuzzy logic and its impact on several of today's technological breakthroughs" -- Friday at 2:00 in the Theatre of the Arts.

David Boswell, a software executive who has been announced as the winner of this year's J. W. Graham Medal in Computing and Innovation, will speak at 2:30 Friday (Davis Centre room 1302) on "Highlights from the Essential Guide to the Software Business".

Other notes today

Today should have been the opening day of the annual NMR Summer School sponsored by UW's physics department. (NMR is Nuclear Magnetic Resonance.) "Due to extenuating circumstances which led to dramatically reduced registration," the web site says, "the 17th NMR Summer School has been cancelled."

Palestine Week continues, today with information displays, Palestinian food, music and "Debka" dancing in the Student Life Centre.

A flyer announces that at noontime on Wednesday, the Employee Assistance Program presents a talk on "Performance Enhancement" by psychologist Christopher Lane. It starts at 12:00 in Davis Centre room 1302.

Hockey coach joins athletics staff

[Taylor] The athletics department announced Friday that Karl Taylor (left), now at Red Deer College in Alberta, will be the new head coach of the men's hockey Warriors and interuniversity sport coordinator for UW. He'll be starting work later this month.

"The Department of Athletics is excited the Warrior hockey program will now be supported by a full-time hockey coach," an announcement said. "Karl Taylor brings a wealth of playing and coaching experience to this new position."

Originally from North Bay, Taylor is a former Junior A player with Windsor, London and North Bay, and played five seasons with the University of New Brunswick, winning the Mark Jeffrey Memorial Award in 1995 for "leadership, dedication and commitment to the team".

After graduating, he coached with UNB's Varsity Reds and with the Fredericton Canadians of the AHL, and has been at Red Deer College as head coach for the past three years. He has also spent a year with the Canadian men's national team as an apprentice coach.

"We are excited that we are supported by a full-time position which will improve the competitive level of the men's hockey program," says athletics director Judy McCrae. "With all of Karl's background, we are confident he will continue the traditions of Warrior hockey. Karl is a tremendous fit for intercollegiate hockey and the University of Waterloo."

The athletics department sent out a thank-you to Dave Cressman for his "commitment and dedication" to the Warriors as a part-time coach over the past twelve years. A former professional player (four years with the Minnesota North Stars), Cressman served as assistant to former coach Don McKee for seven seasons and then became head coach himself in 1998-1999. He is a teacher at a local high school, about to enter his 25th year in the classroom.

"We are indebted to Dave's contribution for the past 12 years to the hockey program here at Waterloo," said McCrae. "Dave has always put student-athletes first, and, his hockey knowledge, background and passion for the game is second to none. Dave was able to successfully continue the rich hockey tradition here at UW during his tenure and we thank him for all his hard work and contributions."


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