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Friday, September 9, 2005

  • UW statement on Hurricane Katrina
  • Week of 'inventive and spontaneous fun'
  • North campus street gets Tompa name
  • Baseball Warriors make a playoff pitch
Chris Redmond

Breakfast for Learning Month

[Six squares by five]

T-shirts from five decades were the raw material for this quilt, created by Brandi Gillett Woods of Renison College. Renison appealed to its alumni to donate shirts from their college days, and a total of 23 historic shirts arrived, the fall issue of Renison's alumni newsletter reports. The quilt honours Renison's 45th anniversary and will be displayed in the new Academic Centre at the college, now under construction.

UW statement on Hurricane Katrina

UW stands ready to help the colleges and universities that were struck by last week's hurricane, and their displaced students, says a statement yesterday from UW president David Johnston.

He writes: "All of us at the University of Waterloo have been watching news from the areas affected by Hurricane Katrina with great concern, and with keen interest in determining how we might help the universities and colleges in that region of the U.S.

"According to experts in the U.S. and the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC), more than 30 colleges and universities located in the Gulf Coast region have been severely damaged by the hurricane and up to 100,000 students have been displaced.

"Institutions in Louisiana and Mississippi have suffered great physical damage and possible human losses and will not be able to resume normal teaching and research operations for months to come.

"The University of Waterloo is working actively with AUCC and COU (Council of Ontario Universities) to determine how we can be most helpful in this difficult recovery effort.

"We have already informed COU that we are prepared to help accommodate displaced students by offering tuition waivers to 10 undergraduate and 10 graduate students. As we find out about other specific needs, we at Waterloo will do whatever we can to assist."

Engineering reunion for classes of 1965, 1970, 1975, September 10-11, faculty members invited, details online. President hosts a reception in CEIT building Saturday afternoon.

Warrior sports: Field hockey at Toronto Invitational on Saturday; golf at St. Lawrence (New York) Invitational all weekend; football vs. Toronto, Saturday 2 p.m., University Stadium; men's rugby at Laurier, Saturday 3 p.m.; women's rugby Sunday at Columbia Field, vs. Guelph 11 a.m., vs. Alumni 1 p.m.; soccer at Laurier, Sunday, women 1 p.m., men 3 p.m.

Duncan Murie, development and alumni affairs, retirement party Monday 3:30 to 5:30, University Club, RSVP to ext. 7593.

Campus Recreation open house Tuesday 11:30 to 3:00 outside Student Life Centre. Registration starts Monday for campus rec leagues; starts September 19 for instructional programs; details online.

Part-time job fair Tuesday noon to 2 p.m., Student Life Centre.

Week of 'inventive and spontaneous fun'

From the Finn Green Games at St. Jerome's University this morning to Tony the Tiger's Tribal Rhythms in the Bombshelter pub tonight, social events dominate today's schedule in the orientation program for first-year students.

The big event of the day is the "Village Carnival" (and "Waterloo Idol" competition and barbecue) on the Village green, a festivity that will keep residence students busy from mid-morning to late afternoon. Evening events, besides the Bomber party for students in applied health sciences and environmental studies, will include an engineering scavenger hunt and a science bonfire. With a largely outdoor program, the T-shirted crowds can look forward to a zero per cent chance of precipitation, weather forecasters are saying.

Tomorrow morning is a sleep-in time for the 5,000 new first-year students. The afternoon brings "Black and Gold Day" -- a pep rally and a mass visit to University Stadium to watch the football Warriors face Toronto.

And then tomorrow evening, they'll be ga-ga at the go-go when they see him in his toga. It's the now traditional Saturday night toga party on the Matthews Hall green -- entirely alcohol-free for the first time, as liquor has now been completely edged out of organized orientation week activities. "This is a decision by our students," says Catharine Scott, the associate provost who's in charge of student life at UW. She went on: "There is a clear understanding and trust between UW admin and our frosh leaders that alcohol must be handled responsibly . . . more than that, our frosh leaders want to make sure that first years understand they do not have to drink to have fun. Alcohol when it was served over the last few years has had a very low focus. This year, the Federation Orientation Committee decided to leave it out entirely. Most students are underage, it's costly to make available and they wanted to focus on fun without since most first years would not be allowed to drink for their entire first year anyway."

Still, Saturday night's party could be on the loud side, and the city of Waterloo has given a waiver of its noise bylaw for music until 2 a.m. For those who don't fancy Roman attire, there's an official alternative: a comedy performance in Federation Hall.

And on the seventh day, they rest. Classes start Monday morning.

Scott says -- as always -- that orientation week has been going really well: "Faculty, residence and college events have all been successful and very well attended, and the vitality and good humour on campus has been just wonderful. No one knows better how to have fun more than 17, 18 and 19 year olds. Their capacity for sheer inventive and spontaneous fun is amazing. Safety, Food Services, Police Services, Plant Ops and many many other departments have been, as always, a huge help to the week. What a great impression for our frosh!"

Some notes on services over the weekend: The bookstore, UW Shop, Techworx and Campus Techshop will be open Saturday 12 to 4. The Dana Porter and Davis Centre libraries will be open Saturday and Sunday noon to 6. Tim Horton's in the Student Life Centre will be open Saturday 11 a.m. to midnight, Sunday from 11 a.m. as it returns to 24-hour-a-day service.

Activity also gets started this weekend at the Renison Institute of Ministry, a Renison College offshoot that provides workshops and courses for Anglican Church people in western Ontario. The 2005-06 season starts with a course in Biblical Hebrew, to be offered on three Saturdays starting with tomorrow. Other titles for the coming months include "Theological Foundations I" (six Saturdays) and "Seasonal Quiet Days and Meditation" on September 24. A series of Tuesday evening lectures starts with "The Eclipse of the Church, or the Road to the Self" on November 8.

North campus street gets Tompa name

A street in UW's north campus Research and Technology Park is being named for a long-time Waterloo faculty member who's also the founder of a high-tech company that is about to open a building on that street.

The "South Service Road", which runs east-west and crosses Hagey Boulevard at the smaller of the two R&T Park traffic circles, is to be called "Frank Tompa Drive". A report issued this week indicates that approval has been given on behalf of the university's board of governors and senate, as required by the UW "Naming Principles and Procedures".

While the two main roadways in the R&T Park, Hagey Boulevard and Wes Graham Way, are Waterloo city streets, Frank Tompa Drive is owned by UW itself, so the university has the final say over the name.

[Tompa] The almost-finished Accelerator Centre building is at the corner of Hagey Boulevard and Frank Tompa Drive. A short distance to the west, the headquarters of Open Text Corporation is under construction.

Tompa (right) has been a faculty member in computer science at UW since 1974, and served as chair of the CS department and director of the school of CS. He was a leader of the UW research team that worked with Oxford University Press in the 1980s to use database technology to create the second edition of the New Oxford English Dictionary, and he heads the Centre for the New OED and Text Research.

Software created for the OED project was the basis for the 1991 creation of Open Text. It's now one of the largest UW spinoff companies, describing itself as "leading provider of Enterprise Content Management solutions".

The OED project and the activities that followed it are considered a landmark in UW's development of an international reputation, as well as probably the biggest research project carried out here up to that time.

Baseball Warriors make a playoff pitch -- from athletics and recreational services

The Warrior men's baseball team is making a pitch for the playoffs this year after a hard 2004-05 season that was marked by tough losses, most by a single run. The team finished with a 7-11 record and a fifth-place finish in the division, one game short of the playoffs.

Coach Brian Bishop is anxious to work on the team's offence for the coming season. While he is confident that the Warrior pitching staff, built around the trio of Shane Riley, Wes Koch, and Derek Junkin, is more than capable of maintaining the excellent defence provided in the past season, Bishop admits that the team needs to move in the offensive direction. Bishop's primary concern will be to get players on base. Emphasis will be placed on scoring runs however possible -- not necessarily by conventional means of home runs and grand slams, but rather with an emphasis on the importance of bunting and stealing bases.

At least Bishop has no reason to be apprehensive about defence. Riley was named to the OUA all-star team as a rookie last season, with an impressive 35 strikeouts. By the end of last year, UW's pitching phenom had racked up three shutouts, one of which was a no-hitter. As well, the team will look to leadership from returning team MVP shortstop and occasional pitcher Brennan Hagey and first baseman Scott Schmidt. Hagey's role in both the field (with a 93.55 fielding rate) and at the plate (with a batting average of .280) should be instrumental this year. Their roles in inspiring team spirit should not go unnoticed in the 2005-2006 season.

The relative youthfulness of the team means many players from last season will be returning. Assistant coach Luke Potwarka is keen on developing the skills of the younger players, and the additional experience will help the team deal with the challenges to be faced in the upcoming year.

The Warriors picked up their first win of the year on Wednesday night, defeating the defending OUA champion Brock Badgers by a score of 3-1. Last weekend the team had lost three games -- one to McMaster, then both games of a doubleheader to Toronto.

But on Wednesday the Warriors got a solid pitching performance from second year starter Junkin, who allowed 1 unearned run on 3 hits and struck out 4 in 5 innings of work. Alex Beauvais and John McNabb pitched solidly in relief. In 5 innings of relief this year, McNabb has given up 0 runs, 1 hit, and has struck out 7.

The Warriors got all three runs in the fourth inning, and the pitching shut the door the rest of the way. Brandon Wittig led the offence with two hits, while Brandon Smith and Derek Sinko each chipped in with a hit and an RBI. Scott VanDycke and Andrew Hoffman also collected hits for the Warriors. The defence committed only one error and turned two double plays to help the pitchers out of a couple of jams.

The next action for the Warriors is Saturday, when they take on Laurier, and Sunday, when they travel to Guelph for a doubleheader. Both days, play starts at 1:00.


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