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Tuesday, October 29, 2013



  • Associate Provost, Human Resources named
  • Final push this week for United Way campaign
  • OHD extends call for proposal deadline
  • Board of governors meets today, other notes



Brenda Mallat, Diana DeCarvalho, and Katherine Trask.

Back in the game: Kinesiology PhD student Diana DeCarvalho (above centre) won the Founders’ Award for Doctoral Research at the 44th Annual Conference of the Association of Canadian Ergonomists for her paper "Back pain and sitting: are chairs or breaks the answer?”

The paper looked at the effects of chair design and walking breaks on low back pain in participants completing two hours of data entry tasks. Low back pain associated with sitting is arguably one of the largest problems facing the field of office ergonomics.

DeCarvalho is pictured above with (left) Brenda Mallat, President of ACE, and (right) Dr. Katherine Trask, Student Award Committee Chair.


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Associate Provost, Human Resources named

"It is my pleasure to inform you that I have accepted the recommendation of the Associate Provost, Human Resources Nominating Committee that Dr. Marilyn L. Thompson be appointed Associate Provost, Human Resources commencing on 2 January 2014," writes Vice-President, Academic & Provost Geoff McBoyle.

Thompson holds a Bachelor of Nursing from Memorial University of Newfoundland, a Master of Education (Higher Education Group - University of Toronto) and a Doctor of Philosophy (Theory and Policy Studies of Higher Education [Administration of Post-Secondary Institutions] - University of Toronto). She began her career as a Registered Nurse in Newfoundland and Florida from 1977 to 1981 before becoming a faculty member and teaching at the St. Clare's Mercy Hospital School of Nursing in St. John's. In 1986, she moved to St. Michael’s Hospital (Toronto) as a Training and Development Specialist, and in 1991 she became a Manager, Training and Development at the Municipality of Metropolitan Toronto. She was an educational consultant from 1988 to 1991 at the Canadian Hospital Association in Ottawa. Simultaneously, Thompson continued in the academic world as a sessional instructor in the Faculty of Education at Memorial University of Newfoundland, and she published several articles, gave public presentations and supervised graduate theses.

From 1994 to 2001, she was Manager, Organizational Effectiveness at Memorial University, and Director of Human Resources and Senior Consultant, Industry and Trade at the Bristol Group in Newfoundland, where she assisted in complex organizational change. From 2006 to 2011, she was Director, Organizational Management and Design, and then Director, Policy Capacity at the Cabinet Secretariat of the Executive Council of the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Since 2011, she has been Vice President at the Eastern Health Regional Health Authority where she led senior management teams, among many other duties. During the course of her career, she has developed and implemented strategic plans for different departments and organizations. In 2002, Dr. Thompson was awarded the Queens’s Golden Jubilee Medal for Canadians who have made a significant contribution to their community and their country.

A few words about the nominating process: The Associate Provost, Human Resources Nominating Committee was formed in April 2013. Odgers Berndtson, an external executive search consulting firm, was engaged to assist the committee in its search. The committee solicited feedback broadly from the university community on the issues, priorities and opportunities that would face the Associate Provost, Human Resources, as well as the required background, skills, qualifications and management style. The position was advertised in June and July. A candidate list was created and several were interviewed. On the basis of those interviews, committee members agreed to recommend Thompson for the position.

Bud Walker, currently serving as interim Associate Provost, Human Resources, will remain until Thompson takes up her new responsibilities.


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Final push this week for United Way campaign

by Jacqueline Martinz.

The University of Waterloo’s United Way Campaign is nearing the end of its run. The goal is to raise $240,000 by October 31, 2013.

For those on campus who have yet to donate, remember that a contribution to the organization makes a significant difference. The United Way works to help people through initiatives in three areas: All that kids can be, Healthy people, strong communities, and From poverty to possibility. By focusing on key areas, the United Way is able to ensure specific goals are achieved and residents of all ages within the region receive what they need to overcome difficulties.

The agencies assisted by the United Way include Reaching Our Outdoor Friends (R.O.O.F.), The House of Friendship, and The Canadian Mental Health Association. Every dollar adds up, and even a small amount will have a large impact. Just $250 will provide a child with the opportunity to join the Healthy Start program, which will give confidence, strong interpersonal skills, and more. With $500, the United Way will keep a community centre in a low-income neighbourhood open for one day providing nearly 100 people with prevention programs.

Information about the campaign, the organization, and how to donate is available online.


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OHD extends call for proposal deadline

OHD Staff Conference logo.The deadline for submissions of proposal abstracts for the Seventh Annual Staff Conference has been extended to Monday, November 4.

Organizational & Human Development (OHD) is inviting internal proposals from the campus community on workshop sessions for the conference, which is taking place on April 7 & 8, 2014.

"Proposals should be for an educational and interactive session(s) focused on professional and/or personal development— from all areas of campus life, be it work-life balance, to health and wellness, to emerging technologies—that will include discussion, activities, engagement, and learning outcomes on your specific topic," writes Mark Lisetto-Smith.

For more information about the Call for Proposals, please review the 2014 Staff Conference: Call for Proposal guidelines.


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International Spouses group with their Jack O'Lanterns.
Board of governors meets today, other notes

Last week the International Spouses group met to carve pumpkins some for the first time, writes co-ordinator Nancy Matthews. Countries represented include China, Spain, India, Bahrain, France, the Czech Republic, Paraguay, the U.S.A. and Canada.

On the agenda at today's Board of Governors meeting is an overview of the university's annual performance indicators. The governors will also decide on changes to the memorandum of agreement between the university and FAUW and will discuss a Gift Acceptance Policy. They will hear reports from the board's committees - Audit, Building & Properties, Finance & Investment, Governance, and Pension & Benefits.

Scheduled maintenance to the Quest system's servers is taking place at 6:30 a.m. on Wednesday, October 30. The system will be unavailable between 6:30 a.m. and 8:00 a.m. on Wednesday as firmware fixes and other enhancements are applied.


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Link of the day

Canada's 15th Parliament: Coalition building in 1925

When and where

UWRA Fall luncheon, Tuesday, October 29, 12:00 p.m., Sunshine Centre/Luther Village. Tickets are $28 each for UWRA members, spouses, and guests, and $30 for non-members. Call 519-888-0334 for ticket information.

Centre for Career Action presents Career Exploration and Decision Making, Tuesday, October 29, 1:00 p.m., TC 1112. Details.

Board of Governors meeting, Tuesday, October 29, 1:30 p.m., EIT 3142.

Engineering teaching event, "Engaging student attention in large classes," Tuesday, October 29, 2:30 p.m., E5 3102. Details.

WISE Lecture Series featuring Dr. Rob Dembo, founder and CEO of Zerofootprint, "Behaviour Change: An Untapped Resource in Coping with Climate Change," Tuesday, October 29, 3:00 p.m., DC 1302. Details.

Centre for Theoretical Neuroscience colloquium featuring Surya Ganguli, Stanford University, " A Theory of Neural Dimensionality and Dynamics," Tuesday, October 29, 3:30 p.m., PAS 2464. Details.

Chemical Engineering Seminar featuring Aiping Yu, Assistant Professor Chemical Engineering, University of Waterloo, “Advanced Graphene Materials for Energy Storage & Conversion," Wednesday, October 30, 11:30 a.m., E6 2024.

The Story of Hagar: a multimedia liturgical piece, Wednesday, October 30, 12:30 p.m., Conrad Grebel chapel. Details.

Centre for Career Action presents Work Search Strategies, Wednesday, October 30, 2:30 p.m., TC 1208. Details.

Wednesday Night Discussion Group, Wednesday, October 30, 7:15 p.m., MC 5136. Details.

Library Day, Thursday, October 31, 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., all participating Library locations (DP, DC, WLRC, Musagetes)

School of Planning and Pragma Council public lecture featuring Glen Weisbrod, President, Economic Development Research Group, Inc., "Evolving Transportation Investment and its Implications for Economic and Land Development, Thursday, October 31, 3:30 p.m., EV3 1408. Details.

Random Act of Kindness Day, Friday, November 1. Details.

UWRC presents Container Gardening, Friday, November 1, 12:00 to 1:00 pm, MC 5158.

SEED presents a Special Lecture by Dr. Silvia Dorado, University of Rhode Island, Friday, November 1, 1:00 p.m., EV3 3412. Details.

Flu Clinic for High Risk Populations, Friday, November 1, 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., Health Services. Details.

Knowledge Integration Seminar, "Beyond Just," Friday, November 1, 2:30 p.m., E3 1408. Details.

Observations and Free Inquiries seminar, "On Cheating, Bullying and Success," Friday, November 1, 5:00 p.m., E5 6004. Details.

Fall Open House, Saturday, November 2, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., various locations on campus. Details.

An Introduction to the Métis Culture, Monday, November 4, 12:00 p.m., SLC multipurpose room. Details.

Flu Clinic for High Risk Populations, Monday, November 4, 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., Health Services. Details.

What Matters Now Hamilton featuring Chris Eliasmith, Monday, November 4, 6:30 p.m., McMaster Innovation Park, Hamilton. Details.

School of Planning’s World Town Planning Day, Tuesday, November 5. Details.

History Speaker Series featuring Yehonatan Alsheh, postdoctoral fellow at the Balsillie School of International Affairs, “The Fine Print of “Never Again” – the Drafting of the UN Genocide Convention,” Tuesday, November 5, 1:00 p.m., MacKirdy Reading Room (HH 117).

PhD Oral Defences

Combinatorics & Optimization. Sahar Karimi, "On Relationship between Conjugate Gradient and Optimal methods for Convex Optimization." Supervisor, Stephen Vavasis. On display in the Mathematics graduate office, MC 5090. Oral defence Monday, November 4, 1:30 p.m., MC 5136.

Combinatorics & Optimization. Yuen-Lam Cheung, "Preprocessing and regularization for semidefinite programming via facial reduction: theory and practice." Supervisor, Henry Wolkowicz. On display in the Mathematics graduate office, MC 5090. Oral defence Tuesday, November 5, 1:30 p.m., MC 5136.

Mechanical & Mechatronics Engineering. Hai Jiang, "Dual-Wavelength Fluorescent Detection of Particles/Cells in a Novel Microfluidic Chip." Supervisor, Dongqing Li. On deposit in the Engineering graduate office, PHY 3004. Oral defence Thursday, November 7, 10:00 a.m., ERC 3012.

Sociology. Eric Torto, "Securing the Northern Region of Ghana? Development Aid and Security Interventions." Supervisor, Suzan Ilcan. On deposit in the Arts graduate office, PAS 2434. Oral defence Thursday, November 7, 1:00 p.m., PAS 2030.


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