Thursday, November 9, 2006

  • Bookstore sponsors Clarkson visit
  • UW student invited to telecom forum
  • Follow-ups and other notes
  • Editor:
  • Chris Redmond
  • Communications and Public Affairs

Minute of silence requested on Saturday

People across campus have been asked to observe Remembrance Day on Saturday with a minute of silence at 11 a.m.

The request comes from provost Amit Chakma, who issued a memo asking for a campus-wide observation last year, when Remembrance Day fell on a Friday.

"I would ask,” he wrote then, “that, if possible, whether you are alone, with a group, or in front of a class, you take time at 11 o'clock on November 11 to observe a minute's silence, remembering and honouring our Canadian veterans."

This year, with few UW activities in full operation on a Saturday morning, a general memo is not being issued.

Link of the day

'First black man of science' born 1731

When and where

International Education Week activities: "International Opportunities" 12:00 to 1:30, Student Life Centre; Haitian refugees and peace issues presentation, 12:15, Conrad Grebel University College room 1301; Renison College study abroad session, 4:00, chapel lounge.

Safety training for employees: Safety orientation only, 10 a.m.; Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System and safety orientation, 2 p.m. Both sessions in Commissary room 112D. Registration online.

Career workshops: "Writing CVs and Cover Letters" 12 noon, Tatham Centre room 2218; "Law School Bound" 3:00, 2218; "Business Etiquette Nd Professionalism" 4:30, Tatham room 1208; registration online.

Japan video topics (earthquakes, sushi, samurai, automobiles), 12:10 p.m., Renison College.

[Snowmen outside Biology building]
International Spouses Group "tips for enjoying Canada's winter wonderland", 12:45 p.m., Columbia Lake Village community centre.

Prior Resource Group wine and cheese reception hosted by the company that provides overload staff for UW departments, 2:30 to 4:30, Davis Centre lounge.

Political science colloquium: John McDougall, University of Western Ontario, author of
Drifting Together: The Political Economy of Canada-US Integration, speaks on his book, 2:30, Humanities room 334.

Staff recognition program reception for award winners 4 p.m., Festival Room, South Campus Hall.

Arriscraft Lecture, school of architecture: Charles Walker, Arup Associates, London, "Managing Complexity," 7 p.m., Architecture lecture hall.

Warrior women's hockey at Guelph, 7:30 p.m.

Pension and benefits committee Friday 8:30 to noon, Needles Hall room 3004.

Information systems and technology professional development seminar: Microsoft Access 2007 and Groove 2007, Friday 9:00, IST seminar room.

Remembrance Day service Friday 10:45 a.m., Notre Dame Chapel, St. Jerome's University.

Environmental studies master's and PhD programs, information session Friday 1:00 to 4:30, Environmental Studies I courtyard, details online.

'Journey Through Canada' dinner (lobster bisque, apple stuffed pork tenderloin, maple crème brûlée) Friday 5 to 8 p.m., University Club, $39.95, reservations ext. 3–3801.

Canoe and kayak workshops sponsored by Campus Recreation: Friday, canoe 6:30, kayak 8 p.m., registration and details from athletics office, Physical Activities Complex.

School of Accountancy awards night celebration Friday, Waterloo Inn.

Warrior Weekend activities Friday and Saturday evenings, Student Life Centre, including movies, pizza, juggling demonstration, euchre; details online.

3-on-3 indoor soccer tournament sponsored by Campus Recreation, Saturday and Sunday, Columbia Icefield, details online.

'Spirituality and Aging' seminar Saturday 9:00 to 1:00, Conrad Grebel University College, registration free, information ext. 2-4270.

'The Importance of Being Earnest' drama department production, public performances November 15-18, 8:00, Theatre of the Arts; preview November 15, school matinees November 16 and 17, tickets from Humanities box office, 519-888-4908.

[Clarkson at lectern]Bookstore sponsors Clarkson visit

The UW bookstore will host a talk by Adrienne Clarkson, Canada's 26th Governor General, at 7:00 tonight in the Humanities Theatre. Some tickets are still available from the theatre box office (519-888-4908) at $5 for students, faculty and staff, $10 for alumni and the community.

Clarkson (pictured), a former journalist and Companion of the Order of Canada, will speak about her new book, Heart Matters, and a book signing will follow the presentation. "Waterloo is the only university scheduled for Adrienne Clarkson's book tour in Ontario," said May Yan, UW's director of retail services.

Heart Matters, Clarkson's much anticipated memoir, is more than a public life remembered. "It chronicles an astonishing journey through triumph and turmoil," a news release explains. "In her book, Clarkson reveals that life was not as smooth as it appeared. With remarkable candour and poignancy, she reflects on the heartaches of her earlier years -- her beautiful but troubled mother, the death of an infant, a divorce, as well as the estrangement from her two daughters and their later reunion.

"Clarkson's beginnings — her family escaped from Japanese-occupied Hong Kong in 1942 — were a harbinger of the drama that would echo through her life. After growing up in Ottawa and studying in Toronto and France, she launched a successful CBC television career that lasted nearly three decades."

As Governor General, Clarkson forged a unique bond with the military in her position as commander-in-chief and travelled to Kosovo, Bosnia, the Arabian Gulf, and twice to Afghanistan to visit Canadian troops. Her determination to invest meaning in all her official actions created controversy at times, whether it was refashioning Rideau Hall into a real home and showcasing it for the public, or including writers and artists on state visits. Clarkson reflects on some of the behind-the-scenes machinations with a close-up view of how politics sometimes works.

She has received numerous awards and honorary degrees in Canada and abroad. A member of the Queen's Privy Council and Commander of the Order of Military Merit, she now lives in Toronto.

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UW student invited to telecom forum

by John Morris

The federal government has selected UW student Rebecca Baxter to represent Canada at the Youth Forum of the International Telecommunications Union conference to be held December 3-8 in Hong Kong.

In its fifth year, the youth forum at the ITU's Telecom World Event brings together students from 150 countries with the vision and talent to take on future key leadership roles in the global information and communication technologies areas. [Baxter] Baxter (left), a fourth-year science and business student, will join more than 250 young people from around the world as one of two students chosen from Canadian universities.

"The opportunity to attend this conference in Hong Kong and represent the youth of Canada is incredible," Baxter said. "I look forward to understanding the nature and potential of the global communications industry. I am excited to be a part of discussions regarding the future and direction of this industry and hearing the opinions and ideas of the international community."

"We applaud the Government of Canada in choosing Rebecca as their female youth representative at 2006 ITU World," says Owen Ward, director of UW's science and business program and a professor of biology.

He added that Baxter won the 2006 Ontario Global Trader's Student Achievement Award for her co-op work terms with Apotex Inc., a leading Canadian global pharmaceutical company. "Rebecca's co-op academic program at UW is designed to produce outstanding scientists enriched with business for a global economy which needs graduates who combine their technical and business strengths with effective electronic and personal communication skills. Rebecca's excellence in these areas has been previously recognized by the Ontario Government and she is indeed a great ambassador for Canada and for the Waterloo science and business program."

The youth forum runs alongside the main Telecom World Event, which showcases the latest technologies and promotes in-depth discussions on key issues facing the industry through a comprehensive, wide-ranging forum program. It draws youth from around the world to participate in talks, debates and interactive panel discussions relating to facts and experiences gathered by the ITU and the telecommunication industries about information and communication technology.

The event is designed to be a life-changing experience for the participants, helping them to understand the nature and potential of the global communications industry as well as encouraging them to embark upon careers as engineers, policy-makers and business people in the industry.

The selection of each participant is based on an essay submitted to the ITU youth forum advisory committee on how to apply information and communication technology to improve living conditions for people around the world. Youth forum participants will follow a packed program of discussion and debate, with opportunities to interact and develop mentor relationships with senior members of the information and communication technology sector — government officials, industry executives, technology leaders, content providers and strategists. The participants come from highly developed countries as well as from some of the world's least developed economies.

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Follow-ups and other notes

I should start by returning to several topics that have been mentioned in recent Daily Bulletins. First, I wrote the other day about the teaching resource office (TRACE), and observed that one role of the office is providing "one-on-one assistance to instructors who find themselves in difficulty". True enough, but that's not all. "More and more faculty," says TRACE director Catherine Schryer, "are using the consultation service not because they are in difficulty but because they want to add extra value, interest or zing to their courses." There's a range of possibilities, including work on "course design issues" and varied teaching methods.

Second, I noted a couple of days ago that Roger Watt of information systems and technology is running in next week's municipal election for the council in Ashfield-Colborne-Wawanash Township, where he has a cottage. I said ACW Township was in Bruce County; in fact it's south of highway 86 and therefore in Huron County.

Third, there has been much said, some of it in the Daily Bulletin, about the university's plans to expand graduate enrolment enormously over the next few years. President David Johnston offered some specific numbers at Tuesday's "town hall" meeting for faculty and staff, noting that UW has a golden opportunity to add graduate students — up to 777 of them — by the fall of September 2007 and get provincial grants to build space to house them. But that's not all. The overall goal, said provost Amit Chakma, is to double the current number of grads in "research" master's and PhD programs, from about 2,500 to 5,000, within the Sixth Decade. In addition, "a wild guess" is that the university can make room for 3,000 grads in "professional" or "course-based" programs, such as the existing Master of Taxation and the planned Master of Public Health. The total, then: about 8,000.

And fourth, I noted yesterday that Ken McLaughlin of UW's history department had been the speaker at a meeting of the Waterloo Historical Society, talking about his research on UW's development. He reports: "Virtually everyone in the room had a UW-related story, including two women who grew up on the campus land, moving only when the Schweitzer farm was acquired, another faculty member who had been at Waterloo College and then at UW since 1952, others who knew Carl Pollock, referring to him as 'C.A.' There was also a member of the first engineering class in 1957 who had fascinating memories of professors like Ralph Stanton and Wes Graham, and another whose husband, later president of the Equitable Insurance Company, had been involved in the first actuarial class of co-op math. It was a lively audience with strong opinions and happy memories of UW and the community."

In other matters . . . the staff association told its members yesterday the results of a recent poll about pay periods. Out of 1,723 eligible staff, 909 cast their votes, and of those, 61 per cent said they'd like to be paid every two weeks rather than the present schedule of once a month, while 37 per cent said no and 2 per cent "declined to answer". Says the association: "There is no guarantee that such change will be implemented, but the Staff Association executive will be discussing next steps at an upcoming meeting."

With the TechTown building under construction on Hagey Boulevard in the middle of the Research and Technology Park, the Columbia Lake Health Club will be opening early in the new year (along with a day care centre, a dental office and other services). "There is a special rate for University of Waterloo faculty and staff when they join prior to November 30," says a memo from TechTown impresario Toby Jenkins. She says the fee will be $20 biweekly (plus tax) for UW employees, and $24.75 for spouses. "The number of health club memberships being sold is limited in order to provide preferred access to all members."

Copies of the "university rankings" issue of Maclean's magazine are now available at the UW bookstore in South Campus Hall. . . . Nobody would have believed it a decade ago, provost Amit Chakma said on Tuesday, but UW now has 70 faculty positions (out of a little more than 800 in total) that are paid for by external funding, such as Canada Research Chairs. . . . The 2006 Symposium on Chemical Physics was held over the weekend in the Davis Centre, with a banquet at Conrad Grebel University College. . . .

And, as promised, the Tuesday "town hall meeting" starring president David Johnston and provost Amit Chakma is now available as a podcast.


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