Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Arts courses tackle gender issues from all angles

This is an excerpt of an article that was originally published on the Faculty of Arts news site.

“The public is not presently well-served by either the popular media or the science media when it comes to issues around gender,” says Shannon Dea, Director of Women’s Studies and Associate Professor of Philosophy. “Because the effects of gender are so pervasive, we need to be able to examine them from a range of perspectives.”

Anna Drake, Assistant Professor in Political Science explains: “There tends to be a gap in people's knowledge about gender equality. Convincing people there are significant gender inequalities can sometimes be a challenge. There is also a great deal of reluctance to identify with the word feminist because of the negative connotations associated with it.”

The Faculty of Arts is working to bring gender issues to the forefront by engaging students across a variety of disciplines.

“Taking a course on women and politics pushes students to think about what gender inequality looks like, how these inequalities manifest, and why these problems are often downplayed or overlooked,” explains Drake, of her Political Science course, Women and Politics (PSCI 370). The course content itself emphasizes the breadth and relevance of these two words, covering: political representation, equality, the media, oppression, consciousness-raising, mobilization, protest, autonomy, as well as global justice. “It's important for students to see gender inequalities as a political problem: as something that's institutionalized in a variety of ways and has real implications for their lives.”

Read the entire article on the Faculty of Arts news site.

Brubacher & Brubaker to arrive at homestead

By: Staff

They call it "auto-mythography."

Distant cousins Erin Brubacher and Christine Brubaker - note the subtle differences in surnames - both hail from the Mennonite migration from Pennsylvania to Waterloo County in the 1800s, and are nearing completion of an epic 700-kilometre trek to recreate that journey.

Erin Brubacher's roots trace right back to John E. Brubacher, who established Brubacher House at the University of Waterloo. That's where the pair is going to end up tomorrow, August 6 at 4:30 p.m., and the whole campus community is welcome to attend the welcome celebration at the Brubacher House.

Per the image below, community members are also welcome to intercept the voyagers and walk with them as they make their final approach to their historic destination.

Welcome home, Brubach(k)ers!

Walk with Brubacher and Brubaker

Values of a foundational work term

By: Laurie Peloquin

In April 2010, work term guidelines for Waterloo’s Faculty of Engineering expanded to allow foundational jobs for junior students. Qualifying jobs include production, administrative, and labour roles in an environment where an engineer might ultimately work. The roles must also present the opportunity to learn about engineer-related matters. Construction labourer or machine shop assistant are examples of foundational opportunities. Prior to this change, engineering work terms had to involve significant intellectual activity and application of engineering concepts. The intent of this change is to expand opportunities for first work term students, traditionally the hardest term to in which to find employment. These jobs will add practical and transferable skills to students’ résumés.

1B Civil Engineering student Irwan Poerba struggled to find his first co-op job, and was relieved to get hired by new employer Nahanni Steel, a tier II/III automotive supplier of metal stampings, welded assemblies and mechanical assemblies. The experience allowed him to become familiar with many production concepts and tools. In order to succeed, he needed to build his teamwork and interpersonal skills to work alongside a diverse group of people.

Initially, Irwan started at Nahanni Steel feeling that this position would not further him along his chosen career as a Civil Engineer. However, as his work term progressed, he realized that mechanical and management engineering concepts in his job were not only interesting, but they were central to many engineering disciplines. In order to increase his own job satisfaction, Irwan worked with a team of other co-op students and set goals to out-produce previous student teams. A willingness to learn was central to Irwan’s success, and enabled him to build skills in the areas of teamwork, communication, technical engineering concepts and productivity. Irwan’s contribution to Nahanni Steel was outstanding.

His second work term was with Waterloo Cases in Design Engineering (WCDE), as a case study developer and writer. 

“My interpersonal skills and willingness to learn not only contributed to me receiving an interview for my current position, but have helped me be successful in my work at WCDE,” says Irwan.

This job required well-developed teamwork skills, since students work directly with a close-knit group of engineers from a variety of disciplines. Irwan’s assignment to produce case studies for all areas and levels of engineering students was successful due to the interest and understanding Irwan obtained through his previous job. He improved his oral communication skills and also expanded his ability to write concise and detailed communications. He tied both of his work terms together by producing a case study about his experience at Nahanni Steel.

Irwan’s experience shows that foundational co-op positions can be extremely valuable to first work term students: they are an opportunity to attain a first work term co-op credit while providing valuable opportunities to build marketable new skills. Irwan’s story emphasizes that Waterloo co-op students have the necessary resources and desire to turn a foundational position into a valuable learning experience.

Alumni e-ship survey and other notes

The deadline to take part in Waterloo’s first-ever survey of alumni entrepreneurship has been extended to August 10. 

If you’re an alumnus, or know someone who is, do your part to help University of Waterloo measure the entrepreneurial impact of our graduates.

If you haven’t already, please take the time to complete the University of Waterloo Alumni Entrepreneurship survey. If you received an email, please use the survey link to access and complete the survey. If you’re an alumnus and you didn’t receive an email, you can find it online. Please complete the survey only once.

Readers can direct any questions to and contact with technical difficulties.

New Waterloo campus map is now live! The Faculty of Environment's Mapping, Analysis, and Design (MAD) department, in partnership with Information Systems & Technology (IST) and Marketing and Strategic Communications (MSC), is pleased to announce the launch of the new, mobile-friendly, Waterloo campus map.

Enhancements to the beta version, based on feedback received from the campus community over the last two months, resulted in improvements to the overall usability of the map, as well as an updated look and feel. Coming up next: continuous improvements every three weeks, including the addition of more, granular layers and a routing feature. 

Have an idea for improving the map, or general feedback? Use the online form.

Link of the day

50 years ago: The Indo-Pakistani War of 1965

When and where

Minerals Tour, Wednesday, August 5, 1:00 p.m., Earth Sciences Museum.

Online examination period, Friday, August 7 and Saturday, August 8.

Quantum Cryptography School for Young Students, Friday, August 7 to Friday, August 14, Institute for Quantum Computing.

Minerals Tour, Wednesday, August 12, 1:00 p.m., Earth Sciences Museum.

Perseids Meteor Shower Stargazing Party, Wednesday, August 12, 7:30 p.m., OPT 347.

Biomedical Discussion Group Lecture featuring Dr. Herbert Waite; University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB“Mussel Power: Defining the Essentials for Translation to Technology” Thursday, August 13, 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., E6-2024.

Examination period ends, Saturday, August 15.

Quantum Key Distribution Summer School, Monday, August 17 to Friday, August 21, Mike & Ophelia Lazaridis Quantum-Nano Centre Room 0101.

Instructional Skills Workshop - CTE601, Tuesday, August 18, 9:30 a.m., EV1 241.

Minerals Tour, Wednesday, August 19, 1:00 p.m., Earth Sciences Museum.

Retirement celebration for Peter Jordan, Wednesday, August 19, 3:00 p.m., Federation Hall.

Date for students to be "Fees Arranged", Thursday, August 27.

Spring co-operative work term ends, Friday, August 28.

Orientation Week, Saturday, September 6 to Saturday, September 12

Labour Day, Monday, September 7, most University operations closed.

Lean in Higher Education Conference, Thursday, September 10 to Friday, September 11, Federation Hall.

Lectures begin, Monday, September 14.

Hack4Health, Saturday, September 26 to Sunday, September 27, Waterloo Accelerator Centre.

Annual Traditional Pow Wow, Saturday, September 26, 12:00 p.m., Waterloo Aboriginal Education Centre, St. Paul's University College.

AHS Annual Fun Run, Saturday, October 3, 8:30 a.m., BC Matthews Hall.

Fall Teaching Week, Monday, October 5 to Friday, October 8.

Positions available

On this week's list from the human resources department, viewable through myHRinfo:

  •        Job id# 2913 – Support Services Assistant – English Language and Literature – USG 4
  •        Job id# 2914 – Institutional Analyst – Institutional Analysis & Planning (IAP) – USG 9-11
  •        Job id# 2901 – Marketing and Administrative Coordinator – Centre for Extended Learning – USG 8

Internal secondment opportunities, viewable on myCareer@uWaterloo:

  • Administrative Coordinator – David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science – USG 5 (2 positions)