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Monday, July 17, 2017


Eco-Summit celebrates green offices, sustainability

President Feridun Hamdullahpur poses with Eco-Summit certificate recipients.

President Feridun Hamdullahpur stands with Green Office certificate recipients at the fourth annual Eco-Summit.

On Wednesday, July 12, the UW Sustainability Office and the Sustainable Campus Initiative held the fourth annual Eco-Summit.

Each year, the Eco-Summit brings together students, staff, faculty and community partners with an interest in sustainability to build relationships, inspire action, and celebrate progress. This year's theme was "Building Foundations."

The keynote speaker was Frances Edmonds, head of sustainability at HP Canada.

President Feridun Hamdullahpur gave closing remarks and helped hand out Green Office program certificates to several academic support units and departments. 

The Green Office program is a way for staff, faculty, and students to take on leadership roles in their departments and make a positive impact. It empowers ambassadors with tools and resources to encourage sustainable behaviours, and recognizes achievements through a common scorecard. Almost 40 ambassadors from 24 departments are participating in the program, with 13 departments receiving certification.

Green Office Bronze certification recipients included:

  • Dean of Applied Health Sciences Office;
  • Dean of Engineering Office;
  • Graduate Studies Office;
  • Knowledge Integration;
  • the Department of Political Science;
  • the President’s Office;
  • the Propel Centre for Population Health Impact
  • the Department of Psychology, and
  • Waterloo Centre for the Advancement of Co-operative Education and the Waterloo Professional Development Program.

Green Office Silver certification recipients included:

  • The Dean of Arts and Arts Undergraduate Office;
  • The Dean of Environment Office; and
  • The Library

The first unit on campus to receive Green Office Gold certification was the Centre for Teaching Excellence.

The Green Office Energy Challenge Awards were also handed out to the Green Offices with the highest overall participation in the Energy Challenge during Earth Month. The winners were:

  • For small offices, the Water Institute
  • For medium offices, the Waterloo Centre for the Advancement of Co-operative Education and the Waterloo Professional Development Program; and
  • For large offices, the Dean of Engineering Office.

Remembering Bob Whitton

President Burt Matthews gives a press conference in his office in 1971 with Bob Whitton taking notes.

Bob Whitton (far right) takes notes during a press conference given by University of Waterloo President Burt Matthews in 1971 along with university officials and members of the local press.

​Bob Whitton, a media relations pioneer at the University of Waterloo and the first editor of The Gazette, died on June 30.

Bob Whitton in 1989.Whitton joined the University in March 1967 as a member of Information Services, the forerunner to University Communications. He was the first manager of the University's News Bureau, which was started by Jack Adams. Whitton's job responsibilities included promoting the research of Waterloo professors to the media and the community, and in 1969 he took the helm of The Gazette, the University of Waterloo's official newspaper. The Gazette had its roots as an internal newsletter, but it was redesigned under Adams' and Whitton's supervision as a weekly broadsheet in a pioneering effort to inform the campus community about University life and news. He quickly developed a reputation for being incredibly efficient and hard-working.

"I credit him tremendously with helping to put UW on the map in its first 25 years, writing hundreds and hundreds of news releases and research features," recalls Martin van Nierop, who led the University’s communications unit from 1986 to 2010. "Bob knew two kinds of shorthand and used to go visit professors in their offices for a story in the morning, come back and write it up accurately and have in their hands by 3:00 p.m."

Several superimposed images of Bob Whitton walking in the gait lab.Whitton took a particular interest in David Winter’s gait lab in the kinesiology department, and not only wrote multiple features about it over the years, but volunteered as one of its experimental subjects.

Whitton played piano, was a champion squash player who in his 50s could beat opponents 25 years his junior, and was a Unitarian Universalist chaplain. He retired in December 1989.

"The most important thing in my memories of Bob is how energetic and hard-working he was," writes former colleague Chris Redmond, who took over editing duties at The Gazette in 1973 when Whitton returned to the News Bureau. "He was the fastest writer I've ever met, churning out research features at such a speed that his electric typewriter made a noise like a locomotive. 'Hey, it's Friday!' he used to say. 'Only two more days of work this week!'"

Whitton was 95.

Summer Reading Sale and other notes

The Book Store is hosting a Summer Reading Sale with books for the family, for travel and for summer reading still available. The sale takes place in the South Campus Hall concourse today and tomorrow from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Plant Operations is serving notice that there will be an electricity shutdown in the PAS on Saturday, July 29 from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. as new fused switches are installed. This outage affects nearly the entire building, so all office computers should be properly shut down on Friday, July 28 by end of day.

Arts Undergraduate Office closure

The Arts Undergraduate Office will be closed today from 8:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Link of the day

George A. Romero: 1940-2017

When and where

The Hymn Society Annual Conference 2017, Sunday, July 16 to Thursday, July 20, Conrad Grebel University College.

NEW - Summer Reading Sale, Monday, July 17 and Tuesday, July 18, 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., South Campus Hall concourse.

Arts 101, Monday, July 17, 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Test Preparation & Test Anxiety, Monday, July 17, 3:00 p.m., SCH 108A.

Conversation Café, Monday, July 17, 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., SCH 219.

Weight Watchers at Waterloo Summer Session info and sign-up, Tuesday, July 18, 12:00 p.m., HH 373. Contact tgneal@uwaterloo.ca for more information.

Coping Skills Seminar – Strengthening Motivation, Tuesday, July 18, 4:00 p.m., HS 2302.

NEW - UWRC Book Club presents Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline, Wednesday, July 19, 12:00 p.m., LIB 407.

Calming the Panic: Practical Skills to Reduce Anxiety, Wednesday, July 19, 2:30 p.m., Counselling Services.

NEW - PhD seminar, “Nonphotorealistic rendering of stereoscopic 3D media,” Lesley Istead, PhD candidate, Wednesday, July 19, 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., DC 2314.

Organize your time for midterms and exams, Wednesday, July 19, 4:30 p.m., SCH 108A.

Banting postdoctoral fellowship final application deadline at Waterloo, Wednesday, July 19, 8:00 p.m.

Math 101, Thursday, July 20, 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

UW Farm Market, Thursday, July 20, 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., Student Life Centre Lower Atrium.

Velocity Fund Finals, “20 startups compete for $125,000,” Thursday, July 20, 11:00 a.m., SLC Great Hall.

PhD seminarDeep active learning for dialogue generation,” Nabiha Asghar, David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science, Friday, July 21, 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., DC 2306C.

Waterloop Pod Launch event, Friday, July 21, 3:00 p.m., Federation Hall.

UW A Cappella Club end of term concerts, Friday, July 21 and Saturday, July 22, 7:30 p.m., Theatre of the Arts.

Conrad Grebel Concert, Instrumental Chamber Ensembles, Sunday, July 23, 7:30 p.m., Conrad Grebel Chapel.

The University Club presents Lobsterlicious, Monday, July 24 to Friday, July 28, 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., University Club.

Conversation Café, Monday, July 24, 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., SCH 219.

NEW - Lectures end, Tuesday, July 25.

NEW - PhD seminar, “Constraint bubbles: Adding efficient zero-density bubbles to incompressible free surface flow,” Ryan Goldade, Tuesday, July 25, 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m., DC 2310.

NEW - Pre-examination study days, Wednesday, July 26 and Thursday, July 27.

Getting Published for Grad Students, Wednesday, July 26, 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Exploring Your Personality Type: (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator), Wednesday, July 26, 12:00 p.m., TC 1113.

CrySP Speaker Series on Privacy, “Making security sustainable,” Ross Anderson, University of Cambridge, Wednesday, July 26, 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., DC 1304.

Social Impact Showcase, Thursday, July 27, 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., St. Paul's Alumni Hall. All welcome! Register here.

NEW - Examination period begins, Friday, July 28.

NEW - UWRC presents Mental Health in Childhood and Parenting, Friday, July 28, 12:00 p.m., STC 0040.

Conrad Grebel Peace Camp, Monday, July 31 to Friday, August 4.

Conversation Café, Monday, July 31, 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., SCH 219.

NEW - WISE Public Lecture Series featuring Mahdi Shahbakhti, Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering – Engineering Mechanics, Michigan Tech, "Physics-based Control of Energy Systems Ranging from Smart Buildings and Power Grid to Smart Hybrid Electric Vehicles," Wednesday, August 2 10:30 a.m., CPH 3681.

NEW - UWRC presents Advance Care Planning, Wednesday, August 2, 12:00 p.m., MC 5501.

Employee-Explore your personality type: Myers Briggs Type Indicator, Wednesday, August 2, TC 1113. - Please note, you must sign up for the session on July 26 as this is a follow up session to that one.

NEW - UWRC Book Club presents The Baker’s Daughter by Sarah McCoy, Wednesday, August 16, 12:00 p.m., LIB 407.

PhD oral defences

Kinesiology. Colin McKinnon, "Axial Twist of the Lumbar Spine: Mechanical Responses to Twisted Postures and Potential Factors for Workplace Injury." Supervisor, Jack Callaghan. On display in the Faculty of Applied Health Sciences (BMH 3110). Orald efence Thursday, July 20, 1:00 p.m., AHS 1686.

Chemical Engineering. Xiao Zhu, "Nanocarbon-containing High Power Cathode for Rechargeable Hybrid Aqueous Battery." Supervisor, Pu Chen. On deposit in the Engineering graduate office, SWE 3520C. Oral defence Thrusday, July 20, 2:00 p.m., E6 2022.

Applied Mathematics. Mikhail Panine, "On Perturbative Methods in Spectral Geometry." Supervisor, Achim Kempf. Thesis available from MGO - mgo@uwaterloo.ca. Oral defence Friday, July 21, 10:00 a.m., MC 6460.

Psychology. Darcy White, "Is Semantic Activation from Print Automatic? An Investigation Using the Psychological Refractory Period and Task Set Paradigms." Supervisor, Derek Besner. On deposit in the Arts graduate office, PAS 2428. Oral defence Friday, July 21, 10:00 a.m., PAS 3026.

Computer Science. Martin Derka, "Restricted String Representation." Supervisor, Therese Biedl. Thesis available from MGO - mgo@uwaterloo.ca. Oral defence Monday, July 24, 9:30 a.m., DC 2310.