[University of Waterloo]


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About the DB

Thursday, January 27, 2005

  • Funding for two training programs
  • For the record: the financial statement
  • The cold, cold, cold facts
Chris Redmond

Holocaust Memorial Day


A reception will be held today (3:00, Engineering II room 4403) to mark the retirement of Reinhold Schuster, a professor in both civil engineering and architecture. He's been a Waterloo faculty member since 1970, and officially retired January 1.

Described as Canada's leading expert on cold-formed steel design, Schuster holds many honours, and one more has just been added to the list. In November he received the "award of recognition" from the Canadian Sheet Steel Building Institute.

Funding for two training programs -- from the UW media relations office

UW will be providing training and practical experience for immigrant optometrists, and doing its first teaching in the field of pharmacy, as the result of an Ontario government program for Waterloo Region announced yesterday.

Provincial funding will allow the region to have more internationally trained people approved and certified for employment in these professions and speed their entry into the workforce, said John Milloy, Kitchener Centre MPP. "Our government has made assisting the integration of internationally trained individuals into Ontario's workforce a priority," Milloy said.

The government is funding an extension of the International Pharmacy Graduate Program at the University of Toronto's Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy to launch a satellite campus this year at the Victoria School Centre in downtown Kitchener in association with UW. The IGP, founded in 2001, has already assisted about 400 pharmacists educated outside North America to meet entry-to-practice requirements.

U of T dean Wayne Hindmarsh said the pharmacy initiative will seek admissions for an inaugural class of 20 to 25 students beginning in mid-October and would increase access to the highly successful program for those outside the Greater Toronto Area. UW's future school of pharmacy -- planned for a site on King Street in downtown Kitchener as part of a "health sciences campus" is to operate in partnership with the Toronto faculty.

Jake Thiessen, founding director of the UW pharmacy school and an associate dean at Toronto, said the launch of the IPG satellite will allow "real-life convergence of needs and opportunities." An innovative aspect of the satellite campus is the "opportunity for students to gain practical experience and study concurrently. It will combine classroom study of three days a week with practical workplace experience two days weekly," he said.

Meanwhile, the UW school of optometry will conduct academic qualification assessments of internationally trained optometrists with funding for two programs: an orientation and one to address identified gaps in knowledge or skills.

William Bobier, director of the school of optometry, said the project, entitled "Toward Optometric Practice in Ontario", is a collaborative initiative involving the UW school, the College of Optometrists of Ontario and other institutions. "The program will eliminate a number of barriers that internationally educated optometrists have faced in the past pertaining to education, occupation specific language and communication skills, cultural differences and Canadian workforce experience," he said. It will also assess the optometric education and professional experience the person received and supplement that with instruction and practical skills consistent with optometric practice standards and requirements in North America, and specifically Ontario, he added.

As UW has the only English-speaking optometry program in Canada, Bobier said he is hopeful the initiative will address the similar needs and requirements of other provincial governments and optometric licensing bodies across Canada.

Optometry professor Susan Cooper will direct the development and implementation of the program. She is a past president of the College of Optometrists of Ontario and holds considerable experience relating to optometric practice in Ontario and Canada.

  • New web page for UW library research on German-Canadian studies
  • Effective Teaching with PowerPoint: A Learning Theory Approach
  • Lakehead U will open satellite campus in Orillia
  • 'From ivory tower to academic sweatshop' (Salon)
  • York U report on last week's demonstration
  • UW dean's latest comments on children's need for exercise
  • Effort to end class divide at British universities is failing
  • 'Witch hunt in Quebec academia'
  • Violent conflict at Nigerian universities
  • 'Sex and the brain': comments on Harvard president's comments | 'Summers is right'
  • Algoma U (Sault Ste. Marie) offering first-year courses in Hamilton
  • UW president David Johnston said UW "is doubly blessed . . . first with news of U of T's International Pharmacy Graduate Program being expanded to the UW School of Pharmacy and then announcement of new funding for training programs for immigrant optometrists through our School of Optometry."

    Meanwhile, an Immigrant Skills Summit will be held on April 28 in Waterloo involving Mary Anne Chambers, the minister of training, colleges and universities. The half-day event is to develop a Waterloo Region strategy to make sure that immigrant skills are best used to the benefit of immigrants and their families, the economy and the community.

    For the record: the financial statement

    There hasn't been a report in the Daily Bulletin, I realize, about the university's 2003-04 financial statement, which was distributed at a board of governors meeting in October. For the record, then, here are some notes about the figures in the report -- which includes a detailed, department-by-department breakdown of spending from the operating budget, but gives much less detail about some other aspects of UW's financial year.

    As the university's director of finance has explained in the past, the financial statement is compiled according to accounting regulations and standards, and isn't intended to match, say, the budget for the corresponding year. (I've been told that in fact the financial statement is especially well suited to meet the needs of somebody who wanted to decide whether a university was a financially sound investment.)

    The first table in the statement is a balance sheet, listing UW's assets as $542,042,000 as of April 30, 2004, up from $452,986,000 a year earlier. The total includes a little more than $100 million in "cash and cash equivalents" and $169 million in "investments", as well as $239 million in capital assets -- land, buildings, furniture, library books and so on. The pension fund is not included.

    During 2003-04, the university had $482,496,000 in income and $450,066,000 in expenditures, for "excess income" of about $32 million. Spending included $270 million for "general operations", $55 million for the ancillary enterprises (UW's businesses, such as food services), and $124 million for "restricted and other specific purposes", including research grants.

    A "statement of cash flows" indicates other changes in UW's financial condition, such as amortization of buildings and equipment and some $36 million invested in new capital assets built or bought during the year. Another section of the report notes that $92 million of UW's assets are "restricted for endowment" -- invested so that the interest, but not the principal, can be spent year by year.

    'Greening the ES2 building' presentation by students from Environment and Resource Studies 250, 10 a.m., ES2 south studio.

    Centre for Business, Entrepreneurship and Technology presents Murray Gamble, C3 Group of Companies, "Managing Multiple Priorities and Business Units", 12 noon, Needles Hall room 1101.

    Employee Assistance Program presents Diana Denton, department of drama and speech communication, "Communicating Effectively: Managing Conflict in the Workplace", 12:30 , Davis Centre room 1302.

    'Making the Job Fair Work for You' workshop 3:30, Tatham Centre room 2218. Job fair is Wednesday, February 2.

    Lorraine Beattie, UW library, retirement reception 3:30 to 5:30, University Club.

    Computational mathematics seminar: Fabrice Rouillier, INRIA-Lorraine, France, "Real Roots of Polynomial Systems via Grobner Bases with an Application to Robotics," 4 p.m., Davis Centre room 3314.

    'Green Buildings: What Can UW Learn from Other Universities?' Speakers from U of Toronto and York U, 4:30, Arts Lecture Hall room 211.

    UW Poker Club tournament 7 p.m., Student Life Centre.

    Spiritual Heritage Education Network presents Tony T. Ahdifard, "The Life of the Soul", 7:30, Math and Computer room 4021.

    'Next Steps in NAFTA' lecture by Daniel Schwanen, Centre for International Governance Innovation, Friday 11:45, 57 Erb Street West, RSVP to rsvp@cigionline.ca.

    St. Jerome's Centre for Catholic Experience presents Jim Profit, "God of the Outdoors", Friday 7:30, Siegfried Hall.

    'Two Organs and Five Choirs' concert Saturday 8 p.m., First United Church, King Street. Conducted by Leonard Enns of Conrad Grebel University College; choirs include the CG chapel choir.

    UW Day with the Siskins (minor hockey) organized by UW Recreation Committee, Sunday 1:30, Waterloo Memorial Recreation Centre.

    The cold, cold, cold facts

    Graduate students are being invited to run for positions on the Graduate Student Association executive committee for the coming year. That means president and three vice-presidents: for corporate affairs, operations, and student affairs. Says Jason Grove, chief returning officer for the GSA: "The term of office is from May 1, 2005, to April 30, 2006. Potential applicants are invited to contact incumbent committee members for further information about the positions. Further information may be found on the web. . . . Nominations of eligible GSA members must be received in a sealed envelope addressed to the Chief Returning Officer at the Graduate House no later than noon on Friday, February 11. . . . For contested positions, a campaign period will run from March 1 to March 7 and balloting will take place on-line on March 8, 9 and 10. Nomination forms may be downloaded from the web. . . . Nominations to GSA Board and Council positions will be invited at a later date."

    The January issue of the Staff News newsletter from the UW staff association has a front-page note about the longstanding issue of whether there should be a formal "memorandum of agreement" setting out the relationship between UW and its staff members. UW's administration has not welcomed the idea, and now the association has asked provost Amit Chakma to say publicly why. The provost writes in part: "The commitment of senior administrators to the work-life issues of staff is a measure of our belief that collegiality and consensus are the best ways to solve issues and challenges and our readiness to spend the time necessary to ensure a good workplace. Most importantly, it is paramount that the collegial relationship now enjoyed between the University and the staff be upheld. Our current staff relations environment, including the way in which we approach problems and implement improvements, reflects a flexible, considered and collaborative approach."

    [Fretz] Conrad Grebel University College is mourning the loss of its founding president, J. Winfield Fretz (right), who died Monday after a brief illness at Kidron-Bethel Retirement Center in North Newton, Kansas. He was 94. Fretz, his wife Marguerite and family came to Waterloo in 1963 from Bethel College in Kansas, where Fretz had been a professor of sociology for 21 years. He served as president of Conrad Grebel College for 10 years, then continued teaching sociology until his retirement in 1979, when he and Marguerite returned to Newton. Grebel has planned a memorial service for Thursday, February 3, at 12:30 p.m. in the college chapel.

    Says a note from the department of French studies: "If you are a Canadian post-secondary student and your first language is French, and you are looking for a part-time job while in school during the 2005-06 academic year, the federal program Accent might be for you." There's more information online, and the department has application forms available (Modern Languages building room 333).

    The counselling services department is now offering drop-in career counselling each Thursday from 2 to 4 p.m. at its offices in Needles Hall (call ext. 2655 the same day to confirm a time). . . . Renison College says about 100 residence rooms are available for upper-year students next fall and winter (call 884-4404 ext. 610 for details). . . .

    Ontario's minimum wage will be going up February 1, a note from the human resources department reminds everybody across campus who pays hourly staff. The new basic rate is $7.45 (up from $7.15); the rate for liquor servers is $6.50 (up from $6.20); and the "student" rate, for employees under 18 working part-time or on holidays, becomes $6.70 (up from $6.40). Many hourly rates paid on campus are already above the new minimum levels, says Alfrieda Swainston of HR.

    The "Pilates on the Ball" workshop that was to be offered last Saturday by the campus recreation program has been rescheduled for February 5 (details online). . . . The UW Recreation Committee has discount tickets for the Total Woman Show to be held at Bingemans in Kitchener February 12 and 13. . . .


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