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Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Canada is legalizing cannabis but there is still much to learn. The Stratford Public Library and the Stratford School of Interaction Design and Business at the University of Waterloo are partnering with a pair of industry insiders at a community dialogue event, where attendees will get the straight dope on this hot-button issue.

Michelle Davis and James Eaves will discuss legislation, access to and responsible use of medical cannabis, as well as innovations in the cannabis industry and how it all relates to our community.

Michelle Davis.Michelle Davis is the Community Engagement Specialist at Canada’s largest licensed producer of cannabis for medical purposes and holds a Bachelor's Degree in Biological Science. She educates and builds meaningful relationships with patient organizations, caregivers, social services providers and more, furthering the public's understanding of quality cannabis products, services and therapeutic applications. She also builds awareness of Canada's medical cannabis system and associated healthcare resources.

James Eaves.James Eaves received his Ph.D. in Agricultural Economics from the University of California at Davis. He is a Full Professor of Management at Université Laval in Quebec, where he teaches MBA courses related to processes companies can use to develop more impactful R&D programs. His research focuses on how new methods and technologies can be used to improve the quality and sustainability of cannabis production. He is regularly invited to speak about the topic at conferences and with journalists across North America. 

The event takes place at 6:00 p.m. tonight at the Stratford Campus in Stratford.

Registration is free.

The Community Dialogues series is a partnership between the Stratford Public Library and the Stratford School of Interaction Design and Business.

Michele Mosca honoured with Italian Knighthood

This is an excerpt of a story that appeared on the Combinatorics & Optimization website.

On Thursday, June 28, the Government of Italy announced the appointment of Michele Mosca as a Knight of the Order of Merit for his significant contributions in quantum computing and cybersecurity, including research, training, outreach, and commercialization efforts.

Michele Mosca and Giuseppe Pastorelli, Consul General of Italy in Toronto.Giuseppe Pastorelli, Consul General of Italy in Toronto, who conferred the Knighthood, explained, “President Mattarella was deeply impressed by his thought leadership in cybersecurity and quantum computing and the strong connection to his Italian heritage which was apparent from their discussion. I was delighted to learn of his decision to appoint Professor Mosca to the Order of Merit of the Italian Republic.”

His contributions to the theory and practice of quantum information processing include the first experimental implementation of a quantum algorithm, techniques for studying the limitations of quantum computers, quantum self-testing, private quantum channels, and methods for compiling quantum circuits.

Beyond research, Mosca has contributed to outreach and training programs including the ETSI-IQC workshop series in quantum-safe cryptography and CryptoWorks21, a training program for building the quantum-safe cryptography workforce and supported by RBC. He is also a co-founder of evolutionQ Inc., a company that provides services and products that enable organizations to evolve their quantum-vulnerable systems and practices to quantum-safe ones, and softwareQ Inc., a company that offers quantum software products and services to enable organizations to benefit from quantum computing.  

“I am honoured and humbled to be recognized with this distinction,” said Mosca. “I am grateful for the support of many colleagues and friends in together developing this tremendous opportunity to use quantum computers to solve important problems for humanity, and at the same time better protect the world from powerful cyber attacks of the future”.

Read the full story on the Combinatorics & Optimization website.

Finally, good news about bad moods

New research found that being in a bad mood can help some people’s executive functioning, such as their ability to focus attention, manage time and prioritize tasks. The same study found that a good mood has a negative effect on it in some cases.

Tara McAuley, a psychology professor at Waterloo, and Martyn S. Gabel, a PhD candidate, explored whether our emotional reactivity shaped how mood influences the kinds of thinking skills we need to navigate the demands and stresses of day-to-day life. Emotional reactivity refers to the sensitivity, intensity and duration of our emotional responses associated with our mood.

“Our results show that there are some people for whom a bad mood may actually hone the kind of thinking skills that are important for everyday life,” said McAuley.

The high-reactive individuals —people who have rapid, intense, and enduring emotional responses — performed better on executive function tasks when experiencing a bad mood. Low-reactive individuals showed the opposite effect, with bad mood associated with worse executive functioning.

This pattern of results supports the view that a bad mood may help with some executive skills – but only for people who are more emotionally reactive.

“People shouldn’t interpret the results as saying it’s fine to fly off the handle or over-react, or to be grouchy,” said McAuley. “We know that emotional reactivity differs from person to person starting at a very early age and that these individual differences have implications for mental-health later in development.”

Further research is needed to explain the relationship, but some studies suggest that high-reactive people are more accustomed to experiencing negative emotions. As such, bad moods may be less distracting for them compared with lower-reactive people.

The study included 95 participants, each of whom completed nine distinct tasks and questionnaires that measure the interplay of mood, emotional reactivity and various working memory and analytic challenges.

McAuley and Gabel’s paper appears in the journal, Personality & Individual Differences.

Ravenhill reappointed Balsillie School director

Professor John Ravenhill's appointment as Director of the Balsillie School of International Affairs has been extended for another year.

Ravenhill's term as director will end August 30, 2019.

Ravenhill came from the Australian National University in 2013, where he was the Head of the School of Politics and International Relations. During his successful five-year term with the BSIA, he has established it as one of Canada’s leading schools of international affairs.

“We are thrilled that John has agreed to extend his appointment by another year. He has provided outstanding leadership throughout BSIA during the past five years which we know will continue for the coming year while the Board leads the search for a new Director” said Rob Gordon, chair of the BSIA Board.

During Ravenhill’s term, all three of the graduate programs hosted at the BSIA have grown, and the School now offers more than 120 events each year, most open to the public. As an internationally renowned political scientist, Ravenhill is well connected and continues to foster new linkages for the School nationally and internationally.

Among his most impressive accomplishments, Ravenhill lead the creation of seven “Research Clusters” at the School, to focus the vast research interests of the School’s faculty and students and to promote this knowledge through themed lectures and workshops; he established a relationship with Global Affairs Canada to allow the School’s students to develop policy briefs that feed directly into the government’s decision-making process; and he developed a cohesive Strategic Plan to steer the School into its second decade.

Wednesday's notes

The University of Waterloo Staff Association (UWSA) is holding lunch-and-learn style sessions where they will go into detail on important topics, and the first session will be on the subject of Policy 18 - Staff Employment. on Tuesday, July 17 at noon.

"One of this policy’s goals is to help UW “be a place where people want to work and can make meaningful contributions,”" says a statement from the UWSA. "We’ll see how the policy tries to do this."

"We’ll literally read Policy 18 together pausing for questions and making comments as we go along. There is no need to prepare for this session although reading the policy before the session would help Policy 18 - Staff Employment."

Registration is required for this event, as the UWSA wishes to keep the attendance to 24 people. "Feel free to bring your own lunch," says the UWSA. "We’ll provide a Mezze platter, fresh fruit platter and lemonade."

Employers on campus next week hosting employer information sessions include Arup Canada. Visit the Employer Information Calendar for more details.

Link of the day

20 years ago: Pi

When and where 

Celebrate Canada's Diversity at the University Club, Tuesday, July 3 to Friday, August 10, 11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., University Club.

Science 101 Day, Wednesday, July 11.

Information Session for Graduating Students, Wednesday, July 11, 11:30 a.m., STC 0010.

Beyond Entrepreneurship panel discussion, Wednesday, July 11, 12:00 p.m., DC 1302.

Career Interest Assessment (Strong Interest Inventory), Wednesday, July 11, 1:30 p.m., TC 1112.

Childhood play spaces as What-If Worlds: The uncertainties of misogyny, racism, and classism, Wednesday, July 11, 2:30 p.m., QNC 1502.

Legal Cannabis Community Dialogues, Wednesday, July 11, 6:00 p.m., Stratford Campus.

Velocity Start: Setup Your Business Like A Boss, “A workshop that will address legal and accounting considerations that will affect your new business,” Wednesday, July 11, 7:30 p.m., Velocity Start, SCH 2nd Floor.

Exploring Your Personality Type (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator) - Part 1, Thursday, July 12, 12:30 p.m., TC 1112.

Getting published for grad students, Thursday, July 12, 1:00 p.m., South Campus Hall 228F.

Retirement celebration for Peggy Day, Thursday, July 12, 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., Federation Hall. RSVP to

Eco-Summit 2018: Building Commitment, featuring keynote speaker Tom Ewart, Senior Manager of Sustainability, The Co-operators, Thursday, July 12, 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., M3 1006 and foyer.

Résumés, Careers and Personal Branding - Part 2, Thursday, July 12, 4:30 p.m., TC 2218.

Open House - Harnessing Quantum Technologies, Friday, July 13, 9:30 a.m. to 3:15 p.m., Mike and Ophelia Lazaridis Quantum-Nano Centre.

WISE Lecture Series featuring Sankaran Ramalingam, WISE Senior Research Fellow, "Decoding the Energy Access Puzzle: An Overview of an Experiment at the Grassroots Level," Friday, July 13, 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m., DC 1302.

CS seminar: The prehistory and history of RE (+SE) as seen by me, featuring Dan Berry, David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science, Friday, July 13, 3:00 p.m., DC 2585.

The Promise of Living: University Choir, Saturday, July 14, 7:30 p.m., Cedars Worship Centre, Waterloo.

Book Store Summer Reading Sale, Monday, July 16 and Tuesday, July 17, 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., SCH concourse.

Arts 101 Day, Monday, July 16.

Coping Skills Seminar - Cultivating Resiliency, Monday, July 16, 4:00 p.m., HS 2302.

NEW - Writing CVs and Cover Letters for Academic Job Applications (for graduate students and post-docs only), Tuesday, July 17, 10:00 a.m., TC 1208.

Say it in your own words: Paraphrase & summary, Tuesday, July 17, 1:00 p.m., SCH 228F.

NEW - Getting a US Work Permit, Tuesday, July 17, 1:00 p.m., TC 2218.

Coping Skills Seminar - Strengthening Motivation, Tuesday, July 17, 4:00 p.m., HS 2302.

Getting it done: Productive writing strategies for big projects, Wednesday, July 18, 10:00 a.m., SCH 228F.

Math 101 Day, Thursday, July 19.

NEW - Exploring Your Personality Type (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator) – Part 2, Thursday, July 19, 12:30 p.m., TC 1112.

5th Annual UWSA Golf Social Tournament, Thursday, July 19, 3:30 p.m., Foxwood Country Club. Deadline to register is Friday, July 6.

Velocity Billion Dollar Briefing, “Get introduced to five different billion-dollar problems,” Thursday, July 19, 7:30 p.m., Velocity Start, SCH 2nd Floor.

Beautiful Wanderings: orchestra@uwaterloo, Thursday, July 19, 7:30 p.m., First United Church, Waterloo.

Instrumental Chamber Ensemble Concert, Sunday, July 22, 7:30 p.m., Conrad Grebel Chapel.

WISE Public Lecture: Biogas - Resource Recovery & Clean Tech, Tuesday, July 24, 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., DC 1304.

Waterloo FileMaker Database Workshop presented by CoreSolutions, Tuesday, July 24, 1:00 p.m., DC1304.

Hallman Lecture: Whiteness, Women and Sex Tourism, Tuesday, July 24, 3:30 p.m., AHS 1686.

Lectures and classes end, Wednesday, July 25.

More Feet on the Ground - Mental Health Training, Wednesday, July 25, 9:00 a.m., NH 2447.

Velocity Fund Finals, “20 startups compete for $130,000,” Wednesday, July 25, 11:00 a.m., SLC Great Hall. 

Waterloo Women's Wednesdays: Lunchtime Yoga, Wednesday, July 25, 12:00– p.m. to 1:00 pm., NH 3407.

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

Environment 101 Day, Thursday, July 26.

Examinations begin, Saturday, July 28.

Online examination days, Saturday, July 28 and Friday, August 3.

CrySP Speaker Series on Privacy featuring Vern Paxson, University of California, Berkeley, Tuesday, July 31, 11:00 a.m., DC 1304.

Positions available

On this week's list from the human resources department, viewable on the UWaterloo Talent Acquisition System (iCIMS):

  • Job ID# 2018-2934 - Biology Laboratory Technician – Zoology - Biology      , USG 8
  • Job ID# 2018-3045 - Executive Assistant to the Vice-President, University Research - Office of Research, USG 8
  • Job ID# 2018-3021- HR Project Coordinator - Human Resources, USG 8
  • Job ID# 2018-3019 - Kitchen Porter - Regular Recurring - Food Services, USG 2
  • Job ID# 2018-2905 - Managing Director, CPI - Cybersecurity & Privacy Institute, USG 15
  • Job ID# 2018-3036 - Research and Graduate Studies Assistant - Dean of Math Grad Office, USG 6
  • Job ID# 2018-2882 - Research Information Technologies Specialist - Office of Research, USG 10
  • Job ID# 2018-3004 - Senior Manager, Research Ethics - Office of Research, USG 12
  • Job ID# 2018-3069 - Supervisor, Custodial - Plant Operations, USG 8          

Internal secondment opportunities:

  • Job ID# 2018-3034 – Communications Specialist - Co-op Education & Career Action, USG 9
  • Job ID# 2018-3041 - Instructional Support Coordinator – WatPD, USG 8 – 10
  • Job ID# 2018-2876 - Peer Health Education Coordinator - Health Promotion, USG 6