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Monday, January 12, 2004

  • Fund creates co-op jobs in research
  • Ontario grants come for 6 projects
  • Committees to nominate two deans
Chris Redmond

Alzheimer Awareness Month

A-V staff member is mourned

A funeral service will be held this afternoon for Allan (Al) Wright, a staff member in UW's audio-visual centre, who died Thursday. He was 53.

Wright worked as a maintenance technician and "loved his job", according to the obituary published by his family. He is remembered by two brothers, two sisters, and many nephews and nieces.

Visitation is today from 2:30 to 3:30 at the Edward R. Good Funeral Home in Waterloo, with the funeral service following at 3:30 in the home's chapel.

Because of the funeral, the audio-visual centre will close at 2:00 this afternoon. "Anyone needing equipment should pick up prior to 2:00," a memo advises.

Fund creates co-op jobs in research

As a way of creating a few more co-op jobs for this term, the program of "research internships", which helps pay the salary of a student hired to work on a UW-based research project, has been extended to include adjunct professors as well as regular faculty members.

That opens up the possibility of jobs doing research in nearby spinoff companies and other agencies where some adjunct faculty members work. An adjunct professor is someone who is appointed by UW for limited duties, such as teaching a specialized course, but whose primary work is outside the university.

Bruce Mitchell, associate provost (academic and student affairs), said deans were asked in December to bring the program to the attention of adjuncts in their faculties. It's not clear yet how many of them have taken up the offer, says Keith Kenning in the co-op and career services department.

Kenning said interest in the research internships seems to have been slow this term. "We only have 27 so far," he said this week, "which is about 50 per cent below average (282 students over the first 5 terms)."

The internships were introduced in 2002, originally to provide 90 jobs a year, "to provide both co-op and regular undergraduate students with research based employment, under the supervision of a faculty member (the employer), as early as possible in the student's undergraduate career". Each job would have a salary subsidy, now $1,500 for a four-month term.

"The hope is that these students will become the researchers, teachers and innovators of the future," said the memo that was sent to adjunct professors last month. "Since the program has been extremely successful, the Provost has decided to expand the opportunities available to students by extending the offer to adjunct professors who may also be able to provide challenging, research-intensive work term opportunities to students.

"Students hired with the help of Undergraduate Research Internship Program funding must be in good academic standing, and should occupy positions created beyond those currently in existence. The university provides $1,500 per student hired, and the employing faculty member is expected to supplement the salary so that the student earns at least $6,000 for four months of employment."

Internship funds are also still available for regular faculty members who can create research jobs. Kenning noted that as the winter term began, more than 800 co-op students were still without work, "so we're hoping to convince more faculty (adjunct or otherwise) to hire students under this program."

Anyone interested can get in touch with co-op and career services staff: Sandy Clipsham (accounting and mathematics), ext. 2593; Diane McKelvie (science and applied health sciences), ext. 2438; Shirley Thompson (arts and environmental studies), ext. 3698; Janet Metz (engineering), ext. 3373.

[Unpacking from grocery cartons]

Special events don't just happen by themselves. A couple of hours before the reception last Wednesday for the funeral of Burt Matthews, former president of UW, this was the scene in the great hall of Village I. Working on preparations -- flowers, food, parking, wheelchair routes, guest books -- are Nancy Heide of communications and public affairs, Al Binns of the UW police, and Wilma Balvert of food services.

Ontario grants come for 6 projects -- from the UW media relations office

The Ontario Innovation Trust has provided just over $1.5 million in funding for research projects involving 18 young faculty members at UW. The awards match dollar-for-dollar previously announced funding from the Canadian Foundation for Innovation (in June and November).

The UW researchers will explore diverse topics such as human proteins and aging, wireless communications, new materials and the effects of glaucoma on the eye. The campus projects funded by the OIT, along with the previously announced CFI funding, are as follows:

  • "Differential In-gel Electrophoresis System For Proteome Analysis." $118,000 from OIT; $118,000 from CFI. Brendan McConkey, biology. The versatile system provides researchers with the capability to characterize protein patterns of entire cells and tissues. It analyzes proteins from almost any source, including analysis of human proteins involved in cellular aging as well as characterization of proteins in biotechnology microorganisms, used to produce anti-clotting drugs.

  • "Confocal Scanning Laser Microscope for Research in Vision Science and Biology." $303,291 from OIT; $303,291 from CFI. Vladimir Bantseev, optometry. The confocal scanning laser microscope allows for innovative studies of the eye, including eye development. The research will have an important impact on developing a humane way of testing eye toxicity and a new approach to probing the effects of glaucoma on the eye.

  • "A Facility for the Development of Novel Nanostructured Materials for Electrochemical Applications." $152,288 from OIT; $152,288 from CFI. Michael Collins, mechanical engineering, Michael Fowler and Leonardo Simon, chemical engineering, The facility enables researchers to study the combined areas of nanostructured materials (new materials built at the molecular level) and alternative energy applications. Polymers (tiny molecules strung in long repeating chains) will be assessed to determine their reliability for use in advanced photovoltaic and fuel cell applications.

  • "Creation of a Research Facility for Experimental Work in Cell and Molecular Biology." $300,000 from OIT; $300,000 from CFI. Michael Palmer, chemistry. The funding creates a facility for molecular biology and protein biochemistry as well as a cell culture laboratory. Research topics will cover structure, function and biological activity of bacterial toxins, as well as signal transduction (movement of signals from outside the cell to inside) in cell membranes.

  • "Facility for Advanced Research in Multiple-Input Multiple-Output Wireless Communication Systems." $167,849 from OIT; $167,849 from CFI. Murat Uysal and Thomas Wong, electrical and computer engineering, Samir Elhedhli, management sciences. The facility advances research in wireless technology, developing pivotal Multiple-Input Multiple-Output hardware/software physical-layer solutions for future-generation radio wave/optical frequency wireless communication networks.

  • "Research Computing Infrastructure: Collaborative Facilities for New Researchers in Mathematical and Computer Sciences." $515,588 from OIT; $515,588 from CFI. Arne Storjohann, Richard Trefler and Steve MacDonald, computer science; Ashwin Nayak, combinatorics and optimization; Doug Park, pure mathematics; Mu Zhu and Jun Cai, statistics and actuarial science; Olga Vechtomova, management sciences; and Achim Kempf, applied mathematics. The computing infrastructure offers a platform that will help in promoting interaction in the wide range of interdisciplinary and overlapping research projects including computer algebra, data mining and machine learning, geometric topology, information retrieval, mathematical physics, multimedia databases, numerical analysis, parallel programming systems, quantum computing and software engineering.

  • Convocation programs since 2002 now available online
  • Caribbean students visit UW's Feds ('uwstudent.org')
  • Possible funding for a 'green' campus (Imprint)
  • Globe predicts Ontario budget cuts
  • British government introduces university 'reforms'
  • Federation executive reports as of December
  • Feds consider referendum on national federation membership (Imprint)
  • University appropriations in the US, state by state
  • Publicity for York student federation controversy
  • Academe's Embattled Groves (reviews of three new books)
  • Knighthood for inventor of the Web
  • 'Domination of the university culture by the political left'
  • 'Guide to Community Membership' at York U
  • Government spending on culture increased last year
    Co-op student work records available for pickup after 10:00 today at Tatham Centre.

    Psychology professor Jennifer Stoltz gives noon-hour lecture at Kitchener Public Library: "Attention and Automaticity".

    Installfest for users wanting Linux and other software on their machines, 3 to 9 p.m., Davis Centre lounge (sponsored by Debian Interest Group, Computer Science Club and Linux Users Group).

    Dynamic Book Events book sale all this week in Student Life Centre.

    Engineers Without Borders introductory general meeting, 5:30, Davis Centre room 1302.

    Waterloo Public Interest Research Group volunteer meeting, 5:30, multi-purpose room, Student Life Centre.

    Waterloo Space Society general meeting, Tuesday 5:30, Physics room 145.

    Credit union seminar, "Is Your RRSP Ready for the Next Growth Stage?" Wednesday 12:15, Davis Centre room 1304.

    Oracle Financials system shutdown begins January 30, details on the web.

    Hagey Bonspiel (34th annual) scheduled for February 21, early bird registration deadline January 24, information ext. 3638.

    Committees to nominate two deans -- a notice from the university secretariat

    Alan George's term as Dean of Mathematics expires June 30, 2005. Accordingly, a Dean of Mathematics Nominating Committee is being constituted in accordance with Policy 45.

    Nominations are requested for the following seat on the Nominating Committee: one staff member elected by and from the regular staff of the Faculty of Mathematics. At least three nominators are required. Nomination forms are available from the Secretariat at ext. 6064 or online.

    Mike Sharratt's term as Dean of Applied Health Sciences expires June 30, 2005. Accordingly, a Dean of Applied Health Sciences Nominating Committee is being constituted.

    Nominations are requested for the following seat on the Nominating Committee: one staff member elected by and from the regular staff of the Faculty of Applied Health Sciences. At least three nominators are required. Nomination forms are available from the Secretariat at ext. 6064 or online.

    In each case, completed nominations should be sent to the Chief Returning Officer, University Secretariat, Needles Hall, Room 3060, no later than 3:00 p.m., Friday, February 13, 2004. An election will follow if necessary.


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