Monday, April 25, 2016

OpenAccess Energy summit gets underway

The latest Waterloo Global Science Initiative (WGSI) Summit, OpenAccess Energy, is taking place this week. This year's summit is focused on the issue of access to energy.

"WGSI Summits bring together a multidisciplinary, multinational and multigenerational group of approximately 40 people for four days of intensive working sessions. Half the assembled group are young leaders under the age of 30, the remainder are a mix of established experts and experienced advisors. Summit contributors share their experiences and develop a common understanding of the problem. From there, through discussions moderated by a professional facilitator, contributors turn their focus to the knowledge gaps and key areas of focus identified in the OpenAccess Energy Brief."

What's the context for this year's summit? The fact that there are still 1.1 billion people who live without access to electricity, despite many decades of global efforts directed at mass electrification. What's worse, population growth is outstripping the growth of the global electrical grid, meaning that the problem of inaccessible energy will only get worse.

From April 22 to 27, summit participants and contributors will be meeting to develop a framework for addressing electricity provision for "energy isolated" communities the world over.

"At the end of the Summit, the contributors present a Communiqué; this provides a vision of the future and establishes key recommendations to make that future a reality. In the months following the Summit, this vision is fleshed out into a Blueprint that collates relevant research and case studies, and provides a roadmap to implementation."

The Waterloo Global Science Initiative is a partnership between the University of Waterloo and the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics. The initiative was founded in 2009, and has organized two previous summits - Energy 2030 in 2011 and Learning 2030 in 2013. 

TVO's The Agenda with Steve Paikin will be broadcasting from the Perimeter Institute on Monday and Tuesday nights. Tonight's discussion is entitled "Ending Energy Poverty" from 6:15 to 8:00 p.m., followed by "An Energy Miracle" on Tuesday from 6:15 to 8:00 p.m. Both events are free and open to the public, but registration is required.

Landscaping work on South Commons to begin

A render showing the hilltop zone in the Campus Master Plan.Fences will be going up this week as work is set to begin on the south commons landscaping redevelopment project. The tenders were signed last Friday.

The area includes the raised stone wall near the east side of the Dana Porter Library across to the Grad House, part of the Hilltop zone identified in the Campus Master Plan.

The redevelopment project involves the reduction of some of the hill behind the Grad House, allowing for unobstructed views to Biology 1, Chemistry and Physics. A large deck seating area will be installed with tables that will feature charging ports for laptops and mobile phones.

VP Advancement Nominating Committee seeks input

"We are now beginning the process of identifying an individual to hold the position of Vice-President, Advancement," says a memo from President Feridun Hamdullahpur circulated last week. 

"The Vice-President, Advancement provides leadership in developing and securing public and private philanthropic support for the institution, in partnership with its constituent Faculties, Federated University and three Affiliated University Colleges. This includes: creating, coordinating and implementing institutional fundraising strategies; identifying, cultivating and soliciting major gift prospects; coordinating alumni activities throughout the University; recruiting, motivating, coordinating and retaining a strong professional staff; and providing overall leadership and coordination for the University’s total alumni and advancement services, programs and activities. In addition, the Vice-President, Advancement is expected to maintain a strong portfolio of major gift and leadership prospects, and will be a role model through her/his activity level."

"Over the next month, committee members intend to consult broadly. You are encouraged to convey your views on matters concerning the position in writing to Logan Atkinson, university secretary & general counsel, at , or to Brian Bachand, an executive search consultant supporting the committee at Boyden Global Executive Search, at"

"The committee especially invites you to consider the following questions, and seeks your input and feedback:

  1. What are the issues, challenges and opportunities facing the Vice-President, Advancement?
  2. What advice do you have for the search committee as to the background, credentials, qualifications and leadership style that should be sought in the next Vice-President, Advancement?
  3. Do you have any suggestions as to individuals to whom the committee should speak about this opportunity?

"If you prefer, you may also communicate directly with any member of the nominating committee, identified below. Contact a committee member by e-mail to make the necessary arrangements."

"Your input and feedback will be very important in shaping the position profile and informing the direction of the search," the president concludes.

Comments are due no later than May 18 and will be held in the strictest confidence within the committee. The members of the Vice-President Advancement Nominating Committee are:

Feridun Hamdullahpur


William Watson

Chair, Board of Governors

Ian Orchard

VP, Academic & Provost

James Rush

Dean, AHS

Stephen Watt

Dean, Mathematics

Tara Collington

Faculty Member

Rachel Mitchell

Graduate Student

Janelle Hraiki-Chalouhi

Advancement Staff

Student Financial Services to move to east campus

A message from Student Financial Services

The Student Financial Services group of Finance (previously called Student Accounts) currently located on the first floor of Needles Hall will be moving to join their colleagues on the fourth floor of East Campus 5 (EC5) on Thursday June 2. The office will be closed on June 2 to facilitate the move.

Services currently offered in the Needles Hall location will be transitioned in stages prior to the official move date:

  • Payments currently made at Student Financial Services are to be made in Finance on the fourth floor of EC5 effective Monday, May 16
  • Drop in help for students with questions will remain in Needles Hall until June 1

Please be aware that response times, particularly to e-mails, may be longer than normal during the transition. We are hoping to keep the disruption to services as minimal as possible, but we do appreciate your patience leading up to our move date and as we settle in to our new space.

Fees Arranged deadline, fire drills, and other notes

Deadlines come and deadlines go, and today that deadline is for Fee Arrangement.

Not Fees Arranged? Students have until June 30 before they will lose Access to their assignments, exams, and course materials on LEARN.

Not to worry: there are two ways to become Fees Arranged:

Defray the cost by paying in full.

Enter a Promissory Note by following the step-by-step instructions.

Reviewing your bill for Spring 2016 is as easy as logging into Quest, to Student Centre, and then clicking Finances > Account Inquiry. 

OSAP students are reminded not to submit an OSAP estimate with their Note.

The Safety Office, in partnership with UW Police Services and Waterloo Fire Rescue, will be conducting fire drills in academic buildings on campus, beginning at 8:30 a.m. and ending at approximately 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 26.

The drills are part of a required annual review of fire safety plans. All building occupants are expected to evacuate a building when the fire alarm sounds, even during scheduled drills.

Each building takes between 5 and 10 minutes to conduct the drill. In the event of inclement weather the drills will be rescheduled to Thursday, April 28.

Human Resources is reporting that retiree Jacob "Jake" Willms died on April 19. Willms began his career at the University in August 1969. He held the position of Administrative Officer in the Dean of Arts office until he retired under the Special Early Retirement program in July 1996. Jake is survived by his spouse, Margarita.

Link of the day

Shakespeare's 400th death anniversary

When and where

Waterloo Global Science Initiative (WGSI) OpenAccess Energy Summit, Sunday, April 24 to Wednesday, April 27.

Deadline for students to get "Fees Arranged," Monday, April 25.

Vision Science Graduate Research Conference, Monday, April 25 and Tuesday, April 26, 10:00 a.m., OPT 1129.

Library workshop: "Pursuing publication – author’s rights, research ethics, and tips from a journal editor," Monday, April 25, 11:00 a.m., DC 1568.

Science and Values in Peirce and Dewey: A Conference in Honour of Angus Kerr-Lawson, Monday, April 25 to Wednesday, April 27.

Staff and Faculty Yoga Classes, Tuesday, April 26 and Wednesday, April 27, 12:05 p.m. to 12:55 p.m., SLC Multipurpose Room. For more information or to reserve a space contact Sandra Gibson at

Mark Haslett retirement event, Tuesday, April 26, 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., University Club. RSVP by April 22 to Graham Yeates at ext. 32281 or

Cultural Men and Natural Women? Gender and Development, Wednesday, April 27, 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Alumni Hall, St. Paul’s University College.

Chemistry Department Seminar Series featuring Prof. Xing-Fang Li, Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, University of Alberta, “Detection of Pathogens and Trace Disinfection Byproducts of Health Relevance” for Wednesday, April 27, 10:00 a.m., C2-361.

Water Institute Research Symposium 2016, Thursday, April 28.

Teaching and Learning Conference: OND 2016, Thursday, April 28, Hagey Hall.

Centre for Career Action staff panel, “You’re In Charge: Excel in Your Career at Waterloo,” Thursday, April 28, 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m., DC 1351.

Farewell reception for Dan Anderson, Thursday, April 28, 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., Police Services office, COM112D.

Water Institute RBC Distinguished Lecture 2016 by Jay Famiglietti, University of California Irvine, “Water and sustainability: 21st Century realities and the global groundwater crisis,” Thursday, April 28, 4:00 p.m., DC 1350.

Water Institute RBC Distinguished Lecture 2016 featuring Jay Famiglietti, California Institute of Technology and University of California, Irvine, "Water and sustainability: 21st century realities and the global groundwater crisis," Thursday, April 28, 4:00 p.m., DC 1350.

UWSA Lunch 'n Learn: Fraud and Identity Theft, Tuesday, May 3, 12:00 p.m., DC 1302. RSVP to Janet Redman by Thursday, April 28:

Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship and Research Support Information Session, Wednesday, May 4, 10:30 a.m., QNC 1501.

Centre for Teaching Excellence workshop, CTE759: Designing Teaching and Learning Research, Wednesday, May 4, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., LIB 329.

Centre for Teaching Excellence workshop, CTE914: Teaching Dossiers and Philosophy Statements, Wednesday, May 5, 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., EV1-241.

Symposium on Aging Research, Friday, May 6, 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., DC 1301.

Writing Centre workshop, "Clarity in Scientific Writing," Tuesday, May 10, 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

WatRISQ Seminar by Professor Luis Seco, University of Toronto; and President and CEO, Sigma Analysis & Management, “The Mathematics of Hedge Fund Fees,” Tuesday, May 10, 4:00 p.m., M3 3127.

Writing Centre workshop, "Getting Published," Wednesday, May 11, 12:30 p.m.

Writing Centre workshops, "Creating assertion-evidence presentations," Thursday, May 12, 1:30 p.m.

David Sprott Distinguished Lecture featuring Martin Wainwright, "Some new phenomena in high-dimensional statistics and optimization," Thursday, May 12, 4:00 p.m., DC 1302.

Waterloo Unlimited Grade 10 - Change, Sunday, May 15 to Thursday, May 19.

Centre for Teaching Excellence workshop, CTE601: Instructional Skills Workshop (24 hours), Monday, May 16 to Wednesday, May 18, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., EV1-241.

Writing Centre workshop, "Literature reviews for grads (Part A): Organizing research," Monday, May 16, 11:30 a.m.

Senate meeting, Monday, May 16, 3:30 p.m., NH 3407.

Writing Centre workshop, "Say it in your own words: Paraphrase & summary," Tuesday, May 17, 10:30 a.m.

Belonging: Diversity, Community Capacity & Contribution - An Evening with The Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson, Wednesday, May 25, 6:00 p.m., Humanities Theatre.

You @ Waterloo Day, Saturday, May 28, various locations on campus.

Undergraduate School on Experimental Quantum Information Processing (USEQIP), Monday, May 30 to Friday, June 10, Quantum-Nano Centre.

PhD oral defences

School of Public Health and Health Systems. Byung Wook Chang, "Health, Health Service Use and Informal Caregiver Distress among Older Korean Home Care Clients in Canada and Korea." Supervisor, John Hirdes. On display in the Faculty of Applied Health Sciences, BMH 3110. Oral defence Wednesday, April 27, 9:00 a.m., BMH 3119.

Psychology. Anisha Varghese, "Children's Competence with Listener Dependent Prosodic Modifications." Supervisor, Elizabeth Nilsen. On deposit in the Arts graduate office, PAS 2428. Oral defence Wednesday, April 27, 9:30 a.m., PAS 3026.

Civil & Environmental Engineering. Wei Jiang, "Direct Method of Generating Floor Response Spectra." Supervisors, Wei-Chau Xie, Mahesh Pandey. On deposit in the Engineering graduate office, PHY 3003. Oral defence Friday, April 29, 2:00 p.m., E2 2350.

Electrical & Computer Engineering. Jaspreet Walia, "Raman Characterization and Applications of Semiconductor Nanowires." Supervisor, Simarjeet Saini. On deposit in the Engineering graduate office, PHY 3003. Oral defence Monday, May 2, 9:00 a.m., E5 4106-4128.