Wednesday, November 6, 2019

New initiatives to help co-op students thrive

Members of the School of Optometry and Vision Science wear their Thrive Week t-shirts.

Members of the School of Optometry and Vision Science sport their Thrive Week t-shirts as part of the ongoing Thrive Week at Waterloo.

Co-operative and Experiential Education (CEE) has made several enhancements to the co-op process to better support students. These include a new interview relief process for students feeling overwhelmed by their interview schedule, an increased number of “Not Interested” rankings and additional training around mental health for staff.

“All of the work we’re doing is geared toward helping students thrive and be successful throughout their co-op experience,” says Ross Johnston, executive director of Co-operative Education. “Co-op can put additional pressures on students. Many of the initiatives we have underway are being approached from a lens of enhancing student wellness.”  

The new request for interview relief process allows students who are feeling overwhelmed by their interview schedule to be removed from interviews of their choosing after consulting with a co-op advisor. In addition, the number of “Not Interested” rankings that students can use to guarantee that they won’t be matched with a particular co-op job is increasing from one to three per term. Both changes are a direct result of student feedback received as part of the ongoing Co-op Student Experience Project.

“We’ve been listening very closely to student feedback on how we can improve our process,” says Richard Wikkerink, director, student and faculty relations in Co-operative Education. “Our hope is that these changes will improve the student experience by providing more support and student choice at key moments of the co-op employment process.”

CEE has co-op student advisors based in cities across Canada (including Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Toronto, Ottawa and Waterloo) in order to provide on-the-ground support for students on their co-op work terms. All co-op student advisors receive mental health training through Counselling Services, and each regional team has a designated student mental health advisors with expertise in mental health resources and supports.

The department is also working to improve how it communicates with students. The co-op student-facing website was recently revamped to provide a better user experience and more supportive tone around its content. Work is also underway to improve how information is shared through WaterlooWorks.

In addition, Rate My Work Term response data is on track to be available in the winter term, which will allow students to see a summary of how co-op jobs were rated by their peers to help guide their application strategy.

“This is just a handful of the improved services and resources that our staff continue to work on,” Johnston says. “I’m excited by the direction we’re headed in and how it will benefit our students’ overall co-op experience.” 

New workshop for women and careers

A message from the Centre for Career Action.

What is holding women back from reaching their definition of career success? The Centre for Career Action is proud to present our very first Career Advancement for Women workshop facilitated by Employee Career Advisor Sue Fraser on Wednesday, November 13. Based on the book How Women Rise by Sally Helgesen and Marshall Goldsmith, this workshop examines the unexpectedly significant ways that women may be holding themselves back from achieving the career success they are seeking.  It offers tips on how to change the 12 habits that limit women from reaching their career goals. 
Like Helgesen and Goldsmith, we think that “far more women could and should be in positions of power and influence”. So let’s support each other and thrive to reach our full workplace potential together. Register to join the conversation.
Leading the Employee Career Advising Program as the Employee Career Advisor, Sue Fraser supports and guides staff members who seek to further develop their career. Book an employee appointment with her to discuss your future career development, identify ways to advance at work, and explore professional development opportunities.

They're coming to get you, Barbara, and here's how - lecture does the math behind zombie outbreaks

zombies shamble about in the ruins of a city.

The next instalment of the Bridges Lecture Series will unearth new information and dig up some fearsome facts about ghouls and the undead on Friday, November 8.

Zombies: Monsters with Meaning will feature remarks by zombie scholar (yes, you read that right), podcaster and author Arnold T. Blumberg and mathematics professor Robert Smith? of the University of Ottawa.

"Before 1968, zombies began their pop culture career as living human beings controlled by a Voodoo master," says the lecture announcement. "Then, in one of the most tumultuous years in modern American history, a low budget horror film shocked the world with its tale of the reanimated dead shambling forth to feast on the flesh of the living. Night of the Living Dead redefined the concept of the zombie forever and gave us a new and indelible vision of horror: the greatest monster of all – us."

In the lecture, Blumberg will present a whirlwind look back at 100 years of cinematic zombies and their evolution into a modern pop culture icon, paying special attention to the ways in which Night of the Living Dead permanently impacted the media landscape. Smith? looks at zombies as a popular figure in pop culture/entertainment usually portrayed as being brought about through an outbreak or epidemic. Modelling a zombie attack, using biological assumptions based on popular zombie movies, he will introduce a basic model for zombie infection, determine equilibria and their stability, and illustrate the outcome with numerical solutions. 

Blumberg is the “Doctor of the Dead,” a world-renowned zombie scholar, co-author of Zombiemania: 80 Movies to Die For (one of the first exhaustive guides to zombie cinema that helped to define the parameters of what qualifies as a zombie movie), and author of Journey of the Living Dead: A Tribute to Fifty Years of Flesh Eaters, a comprehensive survey of 100 years of zombie cinema and the ways in which the genre has impacted the modern media landscape.

Smith? is a professor of disease modelling at the University of Ottawa. Using mathematics, he studies infectious diseases such as HIV, malaria, human papillomavirus, neglected tropical diseases and zombies. He has published 15 books on academia and pop culture; is the author of almost 100 academic publications; is a winner of a Guinness World Record for his work on modelling a zombie invasion; was the winner of the 2015 Mathematics Ambassador award, given by Canada's Partners in Research association; and won the 2018 Society for Mathematical Biology Distinguished Service Award for exceptional contribution to the field of mathematical biology and its advancement outside of research.

Keep your machetes sharp and your windows boarded up for this one.

Putting your kids to work and other notes

It is never too early to begin talking with your kids about careers. At the Talking Careers With Your Kids seminar taking place today as part of Take Our Kids to Work Day, Employee Career Advisors Sue Fraser will explore ways you can start important conversations about careers with young kids and teens. You will leave this workshop with practical and fun ideas on how to inspire your kids to explore who they are and what they can become. Save your seat by registering online.

The Student Mental Health Forum takes place today at 1:30 p.m. in Federation Hall. Learn how the Committee on Student Mental Health (CoSMH) has been implementing the President’s Advisory Committee on Student Mental Health (PAC-SMH) recommendations. You will have the opportunity to hear about the progress made, and next steps on the committee’s activities as they begin to wrap up. Campus and community experts will be available after the event to answer questions and share more about mental health and well-being. If you can't make it in person be sure to watch the livestream.

Link of the day

All K-pop, all the time

When and Where

High Risk Flu Vaccination Clinic, Students, staff, and faculty are invited to get their influenza vaccination through Health Services, Tuesday, November 5, and Wednesday, November 6, 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., HS Family Clinic Waiting Room.

Take Our Kids to Work Day, Wednesday, November 6.

Research Ethics drop-in session for faculty and students, Wednesday, November 6, 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., Dana Porter Library (study booth on the main floor).

Take Your Kids to Work Day: Talking Careers with Your Kids (for employees only), Wednesday, November 6, 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m., TC2218.

NEW - Student Mental Health Forum, Wednesday, November 6, 1:30 p.m., Federation Hall.

Exploring Your Personality Type (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator) Part I, Wednesday, November 6, 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., TC 1214

Mindfulness Meditation: A Stress Reduction Program, Wednesday, November 6, 2:00 p.m., NH 2447 – Register on LEADS. 

Personal Branding - Highlighting Your Strengths, Wednesday, November 6, 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., DPL 329.

Discover Ability Information Session, Wednesday, November 6, 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., TC 1208.

TD Walter Bean Lecture in Environment featuring Professor Jacqueline McGlade, “Together, Building Sustainable Communities,” Wednesday, November 6, 5:30 p.m., Humanities Theatre.

Coping Skills Seminar - Challenging Thinking, Wednesday, November 6, 6:00 p.m., HS 2302 – Register on LEADS.

Concept $5K Semi-Finals: Night 2,Previously known as Velocity Fund $5K Qualifiers. 3-minute pitches in front of a panel of judges to decide which student teams advance to the Finals”, Wednesday, November 6, 7:00 p.m., Science Teaching Complex, Room 0020.

High Risk Flu Vaccination Clinic, Students, staff, and faculty are invited to get their influenza vaccination through Health Services, Thursday, November 7, 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., HS Family Clinic Waiting Room.

Exploring Your Career Interests, Thursday, November 7, 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m., TC 1112.

Faculty Meetup: Caregivers, Thursday, November 7, 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., MC 5501.

Grad Student Community and Conversation Circle, Thursday, November 7, 3:30 p.m., HS 1106 – Register is on LEADS.

Interviews: Proving Your Skills, Thursday, November 7, 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., TC 1208.

Alleviating Anxiety Seminar, Thursday, November 7, 5:00 p.m., HS 2302 – Register on LEADS.

Résumé and Cover Letter Writing – Graduate students and post-docs, Friday, November 8, 9:30 p.m. to 12:30 p.m., TC 2218

School of Environment, Resources and Sustainability PhD Seminar featuring Barbara Davy, “A Rationale for the Study of Ritual and Unconscious Motivations of Pro-Environmental Behaviour,” Friday, November 8, 10:00 a.m., EV2-2022.

Knowledge Integration seminar: “Unveiling the effects of medications using numbers and visualizations”, featuring speaker JM Gamble, Clinical Associate Professor, School of Pharmacy, University of Waterloo, Friday, November 8, 1:00 p.m., EV2-2002.

NEW - Bridges Lecture featuring Arnold T. Blumberg and Robert Smith?, University of Ottawa, "Zombies: Monsters with Meaning," Friday, November 8, 7:30 p.m., Vanstone Lecture Hall, St. Jerome's University.

Writing Session for Résumés and Cover Letters – Graduate students and post-docs, Friday, November 8, 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., TC 2218

Warriors Men’s Hockey vs. Laurier Camp and Minor League Day, Donor Appreciation Day, Friday, November 8, 7:00 p.m., CIF Arena.

Warriors Volleyball vs Ryerson Home Opener, Donor Appreciation, Saturday November 9, (W) 6:00 p.m., (M) 8:00 p.m., PAC main gym.

NEW - Preventing Depression Relapse: A Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy Group, Monday, November 11, 10:30 a.m., NH 2447 – Register on LEADS.

NEW - Remembrance Day interfaith service, Monday, November 11, 10:45 a.m., Student Life Centre Great Hall.

NEW - Regulating Emotions: Learning Skills from Dialectical-Behavioural Therapy, Monday, November 11, 1:00 p.m., HS 2302 – Registration is by referral.

Coping Skills Seminar – Thriving With Emotions, Monday, November 11, 3:30 p.m., HS 2302 – Register on LEADS.

Eating Disorder Support Group, Monday, November 11, 4:30 p.m., NH 3308 – Register on LEADS.

NEW – Faculty of Mathematics Graduate Information Session, Monday, November 11, 4:30 p.m., Mathematics 3 atrium.

NEW - Justice as a Solution to War: Facing Down Terrorists, Warlords, and Thugs, “Lecture by David Crane, Founding Chief Prosecutor of the Special Court for Sierra Leone”, Monday, November 11, 7:00 p.m., CIGI auditorium.

Employee Career Advising Program

Is it time for a résumé tune-up? If so, book an appointment with the Employee Career Advising Program advisor, Sue Fraser, who can help you to identify and effectively your skills.

Positions available

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

  • Job ID #2019-4802 - Communications Specialist - Cooperative Education, USG 9
  • Job ID# 2019-4801 - Faculty Relations Manager - Cooperative Education, USG 12
  • Job ID# 2019-4835 - Clinical Psychologist – Counselling, USG 13
  • Job ID# 2019-4833 - Alumni & Donor Services Assistant - Advancement Services, USG 5
  • Job ID# 2019-4816 - Equipment Operator - Plant Operations-Grounds, CUPE
  • Job ID# 2019-4821 - Fire Systems Serviceperson (Mechanic II) - Plant Operations-Electrical, CUPE
  • Job ID# 2019-4797 - Administrative Assistant - Systems Design Engineering, USG 4

Internal secondment opportunities:

  • Job ID# 2019-4805 - Graduate Coordinator - School of Computer Science, USG 5
  • Job ID# 2019-4822 - Registered Nurse - Health Services, USG 9
  • Job ID# 2019-4760 - Research & Reporting Specialist - Dean of Math Office-Ctr-Educ I, USG 8
  • Job ID# 2019-4834 - Faculty Financial Analyst - Dean of Engineering Office, USG 10
  • Job ID# 2019-4832 - Financial Coordinator, MME - Mechanical & Mechatronics Eng, USG 7