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Friday, April 27, 2012

  • High school math teacher honoured
  • Professor wins architecture award
  • President signs research agreement in Brazil
  • Editor:
  • Brandon Sweet
  • Communications and Public Affairs

Peanut, peanut butter (no jelly): On Saturday, March 24, a group of St. Jerome's University residents travelled to Ray of Hope, one of St. Jerome's University community partners, to build a tower of 500 jars of peanut butter and hand out the peanut butter jars to the homeless of Waterloo Region.

Pictured above are (back row left to right) Adam Death, Michael Sawka, Rebecca Recurean, Maggie Hamel Smith Grassby, and Marissa Taggart, and (front row, left to right) Julia Mihalik-Liew, Tatianna Benning and Erin Kooistra.

Ray of Hope is an organization in downtown Kitchener that provides a hot meal seven days a week, as well as food hampers three times a week, access to a free clothing room, free laundry and shower facilities and church services each Sunday. Interest was expressed for donations of peanut butter, as this item is an excellent source of protein for those living on the streets and is in high demand for food hampers each week.

"With the money raised in Residence through Floor Competitions this past term, we were able to purchase 500 jars of peanut butter to donate to Ray of Hope," writes Erin Kooistra,
Residence Life Program Developer. "The majority of the peanut butter was handed out in a few short hours. The amount of people in need reminded us of the great importance and need for service in our local community."

Photograph by Ken Wideman.

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High school math teacher honoured

When the University of Waterloo dedicates the atrium of the new Mathematics 3 building this week, the name of the generous donor who helped make it possible won’t be on it. He wanted his high school math teacher to have that honour instead.

The Bruce White Atrium will be dedicated at 3:00 p.m. today and is being named in honour of Dr. Bruce White by Waterloo alumnus John Hele, Executive Vice President and CFO of Arch Capital Group Ltd. Hele earned his Bachelor of Mathematics degree from Waterloo in 1980.

"In each of our lifetimes, there are only a few who make a truly lasting impression,” says Hele. “Dr. Bruce White is one of those people, and he has done this for thousands of students. Dr. White does not just teach mathematics; rather he teaches 'How to Learn Mathematics'. In fact, he teaches one how to learn. This is the lasting legacy of Dr. Bruce White.”

Bruce White is a retired educator who taught mathematics at Vincent Massey Secondary School in Windsor, Ontario. He is a recipient of the Prime Minister’s Award for Teaching Excellence and the University of Waterloo’s Descartes Award for Outstanding Teaching in High School Mathematics.

“His history with the University of Waterloo dates back forty years. It is my great pleasure and honour to help the University of Waterloo with the new Math 3 Building and to recognize the exceptional achievements of Dr. Bruce White," says Hele.

“It’s heartwarming that one of our alumni has named this space in honour of his high school math teacher,” says Ian Goulden, Dean of Waterloo’s Faculty of Mathematics. “This beautiful atrium is a focal point for our faculty and we’re thrilled to recognize Bruce White for inspiring generations of students to achieve excellence.”

Dr. White retired from formal teaching at Vincent Massey Secondary School in Windsor in 2004, but remains very active in encouraging math students. He continues to run Math Clubs with over 200 students on Monday and Wednesday evenings, and ‘Sunday Math’ for a select group of really exceptional students.

The students solve challenging math problems and prepare for math competitions. They develop their problem-solving skills by breaking down complex questions, and grow in confidence by presenting solutions in front of their peers. In addition to excelling at competitions, Dr. White’s students shine once they reach university-level math classes. Their advanced problem-solving and presentation skills have formed a strong foundation for careers in such fields as engineering, teaching, IT, medicine and business.

Both White and Hele will be in attendance at the event.

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Professor wins architecture award

with material from the Eng-E-News faculty and staff newsletter

Lola Sheppard, a School of Architecture professor, has been selected as the recipient of Architecture Canada's 2012 Young Architect Award.

Sheppard, who has been honoured with several awards in the past year including the 2011 Holcim Gold Award, is one of the founding directors of InfraNet Lab, a design research company dedicated to the role infrastructures and networks play in our environment.

Ms. Sheppard received her Master of Architecture degree from the Harvard University Graduate School of Design in 2001. She practiced in Europe for six years, most notably at Jean Nouvel in Paris, and in 2002 became the founding partner of Lateral Office, a Toronto design firm that operates at the intersection of architecture, urbanism, and landscape, and is deeply committed to design of the public realm.

Along with teaching at the School Architecture, she is a visiting critic at schools across Canada and the U.S. In choosing Sheppard for the Young Architect Award, the jury said she is “a talented architect, design leader, and influential educator whose work is contributing to larger societal concerns, going well beyond the bounds of traditional architectural practice.” She will receive her award during the 2012 Architecture Canada | RAIC – NLAA Festival of Architecture taking place June 13-16 in St. John's.

Architecture Canada’s Young Architect Award "recognizes the achievements of a young architect in excellence in design, leadership and/or service to the profession."

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President signs research agreement in Brazil

a news release from the media relations office

The University of Waterloo and the University of São Paulo have signed a new agreement that will promote international collaboration in water research and education.

Feridun Hamdullahpur signed the agreement yesterday, which will link Canadian and Brazilian researchers and students in investigating issues related to water science, engineering, technology and management.

“We are pleased to expand on our existing relationship with the University of São Paulo,” said Hamdullahpur. “Water-related research and education is a core strength of our two institutions. We look forward to expanding opportunities for our students and faculty while addressing real issues affecting water security in Brazil and Canada.”

The University of Waterloo’s Water Institute represents more than 120 faculty members in providing innovative expertise in research, education and technology development. The Water Institute collaborates with governments, the private sector and civil society to promote the sustainable use and management of water. The University of São Paulo is Latin America’s leading comprehensive university and has extensive research and teaching experience in water-related disciplines.

This new partnership adds to the agreements the University of Waterloo has with other Brazilian institutions, namely Pontificia Universidade Catolica do Rio de Janeiro, Universidade de Extremo Sul Catarinense, Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina, and Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development).

Hamdullahpur is in Brazil as part of a higher education mission to Brazil, in which 30 Canadian university presidents are in the country to promote Canada as a partner in innovation, higher education and research. Canada’s Governor General David Johnston is leading the mission.

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Reminder: UW homepage, academic support sites offline Sunday

The university's homepage and other websites hosted on will be offline from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. on Sunday, April 29. The sites affected include academic support departments that are not in the WCMS. A splash page will be displayed to website visitors during the outage. Faculty sites and sites now in the WCMS will not be affected. Please contact Shawn Winnington-Ball of Information Systems and Technology (IST) with any questions or concerns at swball@

Countdown to Congress: 28 days remaining

Congress 2012 takes place May 26-June 2, 2012, and is co-hosted by University of Waterloo, Wilfrid Laurier University and organized by the Canadian Federation of the Humanities and Social Sciences. Crossroads: Scholarship for an Uncertain World, the theme of Congress 2012, explores the real-world impact of the humanities and social sciences. Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences is the largest annual multidisciplinary academic gathering in Canada.

Factoid: Authors Margaret Atwood and Don Tapscott are among the luminaries taking part in the Big Thinkers lecture series at Congress 2012.

Link of the day

Arbor Week begins

When and where

Grades due April 16 to May 1.

Unofficial grades begin to appear in Quest April 23, standings and official grades available May 22.

Health Services closed today until 1:00 p.m. for staff training.

Co-operative work term ends April 27.

Canadian Undergraduate Technology Conference, April 27 to 29, University of Calgary and University of Toronto. Details.

Retail Services locations closed for inventory, Friday, April 27.

Spring term classes begin May 1.

WatRISQ presents Eike Brechmann, Department of Mathematics, Technische Universitat, Munchen, Germany, "Financial Risk Management with High-Dimensional Vine Copulas," Tuesday, May 1, 4:00 p.m., DC 1304.

Microsoft Imagine Cup, Monday, April 30. Register today.

The Institute of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (I.B.M.B.) Seminar Series, featuring Prof. Peter Stathopulos, Department of Medical Biophysics, University of Toronto, "Structural Insights into the Mechanisms of Stromal Interaction Molecule Function Associated with Store Operated Calcium Entry," Tuesday, May 1, 3:30 p.m., C2-361.

David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science distinguished lecture series, featuring Jeannette Wing, Carnegie Mellon University, "Computational Thinking," Tuesday, May 1, 4:30 p.m., DC 1302. Details.

Co-op return to campus interviews begin Wednesday, May 2 to Friday, May 4 (except Architecture).

Centre for Career Action workshop (staff only) "Discovering Your Skills," Wednesday, May 2, 3:30 p.m., TC 2218.

OCUFA Status of Women workshop, "Navigating the Academy: Lessons and Strategies for More Equitable Universities," featuring a keynote address by University of Waterloo Professor Carla Fehr, Friday, May 4, 8:45 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., OBA Conference Centre, Toronto. Details.

Warrior Football Spring Camp, May 4-6 for kids ages 10-15, and Coaches Clinic, May 4-5. Details.

DaCapo Chamber Choir, based at Conrad Grebel U College, “Celebrating Home” concert May 5 (8 p.m.) and 6 (3 p.m.), St. John the Evangelist Church, Kitchener. Details.

UW Retirees Association Spring Luncheon, Tuesday, May 8, 11:30 a.m. (cash bar), 12:00 (lunch), tickets $27; presentation by retired French professor Ray Dugan, Bayeux Tapestry. Information 519-888-0334. Details.

Systems Design Engineering seminar featuring Keith Hipel, "Tackling Climate Change: A System of Systems Engineering Perspective," Wednesday, May 9, 11:30 a.m., E5 6004.

Centre for Career Action webinar (staff only), "Writing an A+ Résumé," Wednesday, May 9, 12:00 p.m. Details.

Spring Town Hall, Wednesday, May 9, 3:00 p.m., Humanities Theatre.

Waterloo Engineering Alumni and Friends reception, Thursday, May 10, 5:30 p.m., Daly's, Westin Ottawa, Ottawa ON. Register online.

Co-op Job Posting for main group and Pharmacy opens Saturday, May 12, 7:00 a.m. Closes 11:59 p.m. on May 15.

David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science distinguished lecture series, featuring Cynthia Dwork, Microsoft Research, "Lipschitz Mappings, Differential Privacy, and Fairness Through Awareness," Wednesday, May 16, 4:30 p.m., DC 1302. Details.

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