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Friday, September 14, 2018


Balsillie School of International Affairs turns 10

The CIGI Campus, home to the Balsillie School of International Affairs.

The Balsillie School of International Affairs (BSIA) will celebrate its 10 anniversary today.

The School is a unique partnership between UW, the Centre for International Governance Innovation (Canada’s leading think tank on international affairs), and Wilfrid Laurier University. The School, which came into being because of generous donations to the three partners from Jim Balsillie, former co-CEO of Research in Motion (BlackBerry), has established itself in a remarkably short period as a leading international centre for research and teaching in the field of international studies.

The School was established in 2007 with a $33 million donation from Jim Balsillie made to the University of Waterloo and Wilfrid Laurier University, with the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) committing another $17M to the school. Both the University of Waterloo and WLU agreed to contribute another $25M each over ten years, making the total amount to establish the school $100M. The City of Waterloo leased the land beside CIGI where the school would be built. Construction on the CIGI Campus concluded in September 2011, and the building features a landscaped interior courtyard with public art, a signature bell tower and a wood-clad, 250-seat auditorium for academic and public events.

The school was established to improve world affairs through better understanding of other nations in joint Waterloo-WLU graduate programs in global governance and international public policy, plus the creation of new Balsillie Research Chairs and new Balsillie Fellowships for graduate students. The school’s unique partnership between a think tank focused on global governance and two universities known for innovation in research, teaching excellence and the student experience, provides unparalleled opportunities for collaboration among faculty, students and policy practitioners.

“For ten productive years the Balsillie School of International Affairs has been tackling the challenges of geopolitical and economic discourse head on,” says Feridun Hamdullahpur, president & vice-chancellor of the University of Waterloo. “The Balsillie School has established a global legacy of excellence and as it enters its second decade, the University of Waterloo is excited at what the future holds as the School continues making a tremendous impact through its teaching, research and scholarship.”

In March 2018, Waterloo, WLU, and CIGI signed a 10-year funding agreement renewal for the BSIA. The BSIA is celebrating with an invite-only event this afternoon from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the CIGI campus in UpTown Waterloo.

A week to appreciate Postdoctoral fellows

Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs (GSPA) is pleased to announce that the University of Waterloo is one of more than 90 institutions across Canada and the United States taking part in National Postdoc Appreciation Week (NPAW) from September 17 to September 21.

This is the University of Waterloo’s third annual event, and is one of the biggest NPAW events in Canada.

To show appreciation for University of Waterloo postdocs, GSPA has:

  • Planned several professional development, social and wellness events throughout Postdoc Appreciation Week. Check out the schedule of events;
  • Sent Waterloo postdocs a small gift and an invitation to participate in Postdoc Appreciation Week activities; and
  • Launched a #UWaterlooPostdoc photo scavenger hunt

Be sure to thank a postdoc next week, and please encourage them to visit the Postdoctoral Affairs website for more information, and to attend Postdoc Appreciation Week events!

Students will Hack the North this weekend

A cartoonish image of a laboratory.The annual Hack the North student hackathon will be taking place from September 14 to 16.

Hack the North is organized by Techyon, a student-run non-profit organization, in partnership with Waterloo Engineering, and this is the fifth edition of the annual event that challenges teams of students to collaborate on ideas and solutions using technology.

Billed as Canada's largest hackathon, Hack the North will feature a gathering of more than 1,000 students from around the world and industry leaders who will stop, collaborate and listen as they bring their ideas to life. During the hackathon, they will have 36 hours to work together in teams to build mobile applications, web platforms, robots and more with mentorship from some of the largest tech companies in the world. At the end of the event, teams will present their projects to an expert panel of judges.

The keynote speaker for this year's event is Chamath Palihapitiya, founder and CEO of Social Capital.

Judges this year include Director of Velocity Jay Shah, Alroy Almeida, co-founder and CEO, Voltera, Connie Yang director of design for Coinbase, Jen Dewalt, co-founder of Zube, and many more.

Doors Open and other weekend wanderings

Doors Open Waterloo Region logo - featuring iconic structures.

Several buildings on Waterloo's campuses will be opening their doors to visitors as part of Doors Open Waterloo Region this weekend.

Doors Open Waterloo Region is holding its 16th annual event on Saturday, and is inviting the whole community to join in at 34 locations across the region.

Several buildings with strong University connections will be part of this weekend's open house event, which gives community members an opportunity to tour sites that are often not regularly open to the public. Best of all, admission is free.

The theme in 2018 is Places, Patterns and Plans, highlighting the planned and built environment.

University locations for this year include:

  • The Accelerator Centre;
  • The Brubacher House Museum;
  • The University of Waterloo School of Architecture; and
  • 44 Gaukel.

Doors Open also features two public lectures featuring University speakers, including:

  • What Is a City? Interpreting Change in the Urban Landscape, which takes place at 11:00 a.m. at Catalyst137 & Miovision on Glasgow Street in Kitchener and features Professor Brian Doucet, Canada Research Chair in Urban Change and Social Inclusion in the School of Planning; and
  • Public Lecture featuring University of Waterloo historian Ken McLaughlin, entitled "The Brubacher House: Historic Icon on an Ultra-Modern Campus, which takes place at 3:00 p.m. at the Brubacher House Museum.

This year Doors Open Waterloo Region is partnering with Startup Open House at six of the high-tech sites. Job seekers, investors, and curious neighbours can rub shoulders with innovative local founders and discover what startup culture is all about.

Since 2003, more than 300 sites in Waterloo Region have opened their doors to more than 150,000 visits during Doors Open. Most buildings will be open from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. with exceptions. Check the Doors Open website for full details.

Proud family members take photographs of the incoming School of Planning class.

Proud family members take photos of the incoming School of Planning class at the induction ceremony.

Also this weekend, the School of Planning will welcome its 2018 incoming undergraduates at an Induction Ceremony. New students, their families and friends, current students, faculty, staff, are all welcome. The ceremony takes place from 9:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. 

The School of Planning's first Ceremony of Induction was celebrated in September 1999, and has since become a proud tradition for both the School and the incoming class.

"Experiencing God in Today's World" image featuring a person silhouetted against the Milky Way.

The 38th annual World Religions Conference, Canada's largest and longest-running multifaith event, is taking place on Sunday, September 16. "Experiencing God in Today's World" brings together well-known scholars from the world’s major religions to speak from the point of view of their respective religious traditions.

The free event is taking place in the Humanities Theatre beginning at 12:30 p.m. on Sunday. Register online.

A still image from Lisa Lipton's "The Impossible Blue Rose."

The University of Waterloo (UWAG) Art Gallery will be featuring the work of artist Lisa Lipton at an exhibition that runs until October 27.

"The Impossible Blue Rose" is "an ambitious multidisciplinary video installation" that follows the artist's travels "from the fictional town of Greysville across North America, to Los Angeles, Vancouver and beyond. Populated by recurring characters, personas, themes and motifs, and peppered with nostalgic pop references to the 80s and 90s, each chapter expands upon the narrative foundations of its predecessors. The installation is further augmented by a collection of costumes, props, furniture and souvenirs, that evoke the rebellious yearnings of young adulthood and underlying desire to reinvent oneself."

The culmination of a multi-year performative project, The Impossible Blue Rose encapsulates the artist’s immersive work in video, theatre, dance, poetry, drumming, and sculpture. Documenting her extraordinary, absurd, and often poignant experiences amongst fellow travelers in search of belonging, we are invited to join the artist on an emotionally charged journey of self-discovery.

Lisa Lipton is a Maritime-born multidisciplinary visual artist and musician who received her MFA from the University of Windsor and BFA from NSCAD University. She has attended multiple residencies and exhibited nationally and internationally in Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, Windsor, Winnipeg, New York, Detroit, Texas, Berlin, Amsterdam, and was shortlisted for the 2015 Sobey Art Award.

Register for upcoming President's Lecture; submit a question for Q&A

There's still time to register for the upcoming President's Lecturethat features Dominic Barton in Conversation: Dimensions of Global Disruption.

Barton, the University of Waterloo's 11th Chancellor, is global managing partner emeritus, McKinsey & Co.

The President's Lecture will take place on Friday, September 21 at 9:30 a.m. in the Humanities Theatre. Doors open at 9:00 a.m. Register on Ticketfi.

The event includes a keynote address and a fireside chat with moderated Q&A with the incoming Chancellor. To submit a question via email, contact University Communications.

Link of the day

10 years ago: The Hunger Games

When and where 

Music Department Ensemble Auditions for Fall 2018, Thursday, September 6 to Friday, September 21, Conrad Grebel University College.

Feds Welcome Week, Monday, September 10 to Friday, September 14.

Free Fitness week, Monday September 10 to Sunday, September 16.

Strategic Plan Consultation Session - Internationalization, Friday, September 14, 10:30 a.m., Village 1 Great Hall.

Seminar featuring Pirathayini Srikantha, Western University, “Hierarchical signal processing for tractable power flow management in electric grid networks,” Friday, September 14, 1:30 p.m., DC 1304.

Knowledge Integration seminar: “Five Unsolved Questions in Fire Management” featuring speaker Eric Kennedy, Assistant Professor, Disaster & Emergency Management at York University, Friday, September 14, 2:30 p.m., EV3-1408.

Doors Open Waterloo Region, Saturday, September 15, multiple locations on campus.

School of Planning Ceremony of Induction, Saturday, September 15, 9:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

What Is a City? Interpreting Change in the Urban Landscape, Saturday, September 15, 11:00 a.m., Catalyst137 & Miovision.

Public Lecture featuring Ken McLaughlin, "The Brubacher House: Historic Icon on an Ultra-Modern Campus." Saturday, September 15, 3:00 p.m., Brubacher House Museum.

Application for Velocity Campus Ambassador volunteers closes, “Get swag, immerse yourself in the world of entrepreneurship and attend a startup event at the Velocity Garage,” Sunday, September 16, 11:59 p.m.

Peace Week, Monday, September 17 to Saturday, September 22.

Conditioning Classes Registration Deadline, Monday September 17, 12:00 p.m.

Tri-Agency Scholarships (NSERC, SSHRC, CIHR), Monday, September 17, 10:00 a.m., NH 3407.

Experiential Learning using Riipen – Fall Information Session, Monday, September 17, 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m., HH 150. RSVP to jennifer.nicholson@uwaterloo.ca.

Intramural Registration Deadline, Monday, September 17 at 12:00 p.m.

Alleviating Anxiety Seminar, Monday, September 17, 1:00 p.m., HS 2302.

Strategic Plan Consultation Session - Empowering People, Monday, September 17, 1:00 p.m., Student Life Centre Multipurpose Room.

Communication for the workplace, Monday, September 17, 1:00 p.m., SCH 228F.

University Senate meeting, Monday, September 17, 3:30 p.m., NH 3407.

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

Research ethics system training, Tuesday, September 18, 9:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., MC 1078. For all upcoming sessions, please visit the Research ethics system webpage.

Résumé Tips (for employees only), Tuesday, September 18, 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m., TC1208.

Developing Your Compassionate Mind, Tuesday, September 18, 1:30 p.m., NH 2447.

Strategic Plan Consultation Session - Leveraging Resources, Tuesday, September 18, 2:00 p.m., Student Life Centre Multipurpose Room.

The Body Project, Tuesday, September 18. 5:00 p.m., HS 2302.

Velocity Science: The Startup Rollercoaster, Tuesday, September 18, 7:30 p.m., Velocity Start, SCH 2nd Floor.

UWaterloo Jacket Day, Wednesday, September 19, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Waterloo Store, SCH. 

Campus Life Fair, Wednesday, September 19, 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., Student Life Centre Great Hall.

UWRC Book Club featuring the the One Book One Community selection Broken Promise by Linwood Barclay, Wednesday, September 19, 12:00 p.m., LIB 407.

Healthy Workplace Committee Brown Bag Lunch and Learn, Helping Your Child Succeed at School, Wednesday, September 19, 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m., EC5-1111. Space is limited, so please register to attend.

Noon Hour Concert: "Being for the Benefit of Mr. Mason", Wednesday, September 19, 12:30 p.m., Conrad Grebel chapel.

Strategic Plan Consultation Session for undergraduate students, Wednesday, September 19, 5:30 p.m., Village 1 Great Hall. Please note the updated time.

Velocity Start: What’s Your Problem?, “Larry Smith’s legendary talk on how find and solve “killer” problems,” Wednesday, September 19, 7:30 p.m., Velocity Start, SCH 2nd Floor.

WISE Public Lecture featuring Jason Jonkman​, Senior Engineer, NREL, "The New FAST.Farm: Wind Farm Design & Analysis." Thursday, September 20, 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., E6 4022.

CBB Biomedical Discussion Group seminar, "A Positive Health Approach to Older People with Memory Problems and Their Family Caregivers” featuring Dr. Yvonne Yueh-Feng Lu, Associate Professor School of Nursing Indiana University, Thursday September 20, 10:30 a.m., EC4-2101a. Register.

R&T Charity Tailgate Lunch Thursday, September 20, 11:30 a.m., Techtown.

Grimm Lecture 2018: When would Capitalism end? Thursday, September 20, 7:00 p.m., CIGI Auditorium, Balsillie School of International Affairs. 

2018 Cheriton Research Symposium, presentations by David R. Cheriton, Cheriton Faculty Fellows and grad student poster presentations, Friday, September 21, 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., DC 1302.

President's Lecture featuring Dominic Barton in Conversation: Dimensions of Global Disruption, Friday, September 21, 9:30 a.m., Humanities Theatre. Registration required.

Café-rencontre – Professor Mélinda Caron, Université TÉLUQ, Friday September 21, 2:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., PAS 2432.

NEW - Knowledge Integration seminar, “Startup KI: Applying cross-cultural collaboration & design thinking to invent new things and make money”, featuring Charlie Moscoe, Product Manager at Hubba, Friday, September 21, 2:30 p.m., EV3-1408.

PhD oral defences

Earth & Environmental Sciences. Tariq Aziz, "Ecoysystem Services: Linking ecohydrology with economic valuation." Supervisor, Philippe Van Cappellen. On deposit in the Science graduate office, PHY 2013. Oral defence Tuesday, September 18, 12:00 p.m., B1 266.

Computer Science. Md Faizul Bari, "Resource Orchestration in Softwarized Networks." Supervisor, Raouf Boutaba. Thesis available from MGO - mgo@uwaterloo.ca. Oral defence Wednesday, September 19, DC 2310.

School of Public Health and Health Systems. Sebastian Rios, "Living on the Edge: The Influence of Marginalization on Mental Health Needs and Service Use." Supervisor, Chris Perlman. On display in the Faculty of Applied Health Sciences, BMH 3110. Oral defence Wednesday, September 19, 1:00 p.m., AHS 1686.

Systems Design Engineering. Bijan Sakhdari, "Real-time Autonomous Cruise Control of Connected Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles under Uncertainty." Supervisor, Nasser Lashgarian Azad. On display in the Engineering graduate studies office, E7 7402. Oral defence Wednesday, September 19, 1:00 p.m., EC4 2101.