Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Campus will remember plane crash victims today

A number of candles burning.

The University of Waterloo will be holding a memorial event for the victims of Ukrainian International Airlines Flight PS752 today at noon in Federation Hall.

Among the victims were Waterloo PhD students Marzieh (Mari) Foroutan and Mansour Esnaashary Esfahani, as well as alumnus Mojgan Daneshmand, her husband Pedram Moussavi, a former post-doctoral fellow, and their children, and School of Optometry and Vision Science alumnus Dr. Neda Saddighi.

Attend in person or via livestream to join in solidarity with the family and friends of those who were lost.

Police warn of new email fraud targeting students

The University of Waterloo Police Services is informing the University of Waterloo community of the latest email fraud that has come to their attention.

"The below email has been sent to several members of our community in an attempt to defraud responders. Should you receive this email message, do not respond to it and delete it immediately," says a memo from Alan Binns, director of UWPS:

Dear Student , <>

Canada Revenue Agency has sent you an INTERAC e-Transfer (previously INTERAC Email Money Transfer).

Amount: $550.44 (CAD)

Sender's Message: Tax refund of $550.44 CAD from overpaid tax from year ending 2019

Expiry Date: 15 January, 2020

Action Required: To deposit your money, Start Claim

"Unfortunately, a number of our community members have fallen victim to this ongoing fraudulent activity, both on and off-campus," says the memo."If you suspect you may be the victim of fraud or have been tricked into giving personal or financial information, contact Campus Police Services or the local Police Service. This attempted fraud can also be reported to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre on their website or by calling 1-888-495-8501."

Information Systems & Technology has resources available to help you learn how to spot fraudulent emails and other phishing tactics:

  1. The University's cyber-awareness site (
  2. Help on how to verify the sender email address (
  3. Online training available is also available in LEARN (

Music and math in perfect harmony

The University of Waterloo's Gamelan ensemble.

By Katrina Steckle. This article was originally published on the Conrad Grebel University College website.

Music and Mathematics have been connected disciplines in the minds of psychologists and neuroscientists for years. An increasing number of studies have been carried out to link the effects of music on mathematical skills and vice versa. Many of these studies have found correlations between above-average musical abilities and above-average math performance.

A study published in the Journal of Mathematics Education found that math and music activate some of the same areas of the brain, suggesting that music and math overlap academically. Anita Chen, a Mathematics/Financial Analysis and Risk Management student minoring in Music, interacts with both disciplines on a regular basis. She has often noticed that math and music complement each other in ways that have led to her personal growth. “Math and Music is a marriage of practicality and spirituality that nourishes my development as a whole person.”

A person writes musical notations on a blackboard.“There are real connections between math and music, so it seems natural that math students would be interested in studying music,” remarked Mark Vuorinen, Chair of the Music Department at Conrad Grebel University College and the University of Waterloo. “In music theory, we use math to understand music,” Mark explained. “Time and duration are divided into units of varying sizes, musical intervals are related in terms of the distance from one to another using numbers. Mathematical patterns abound in music throughout history.” Mark noted that composers such as Bach, Pärt, Du Fay, and many others have integrated mathematical concepts in their pieces.  

A study published in The Neurosciences and Music III – Disorders and Plasticity suggested that musical training heightens skills in executive functioning, including planning, focusing attention, and juggling tasks. These skills are transferable to many modern work environments. “Daily practice is a skill that I've picked up during my piano studio course that is tremendously important in both math and music,” Anita explained. “Another skill that I’ve gained in music is to be confident. I use this skill a lot whenever I have to perform piano. This skill has helped me in other scenarios, such as interviews, presentations, or conversations with important people.” Anita noted that she’ll have more career opportunities after she graduates because she has gained skills from both music and math.

Nicholas Wong, a Statistics and Music Joint Honours student, commented on another benefit of studying math and music together. “I think both programs are very different. One focuses on the realistic side, while the other focuses on the artistic side. The combination balances everything.” Nicholas also mentioned that math and music require different approaches to education, which have kept his studies interesting.

Evidence that music and math are a complementary pair can be found in scientific studies and real-life experiences, the music of historic composers and the lives of current students. It’s no wonder that Math students represent the largest group of students outside of the Faculty of Arts who are involved in the Music Department at Grebel and Waterloo—approximately 20 per cent of music course and ensemble enrolments come from Math students. But music can complement any program at the University of Waterloo! With eight musical ensembles to join and various music courses to take, Waterloo students have many ways to integrate music into their degrees to diversify and balance their studies.

Advisor conference deadline extended; other notes

Those interested in presenting at the Sixth Annual Advisor Conference now have until 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, January 16 to submit a proposal. 

The conference, set for April 28, is organized by the Academic Advising Community of Practice’s Professional Development Working Group and will be structured around an ‘Updating your advising toolbox’ theme.

Proposals should be a stimulating and/or interactive learning experience focusing on advising best practices, information sharing, or new initiatives presenters want to share with advisors.

Here's what is going on this week at the Centre for Career Action:

Darryl Friesen plays the piano.The latest in the Noon Hour Concert Series takes place today at 12:30 p.m. in the Conrad Grebel University College Chapel. From the Prairies will feature Winnipeg pianist Dr. Darryl Friesen presenting piano works by UWaterloo Professor Karen Sunabacka and Sophie Carmen Eckhardt-Gramatté. Darryl and Karen have been collaborating and performing together for ten years and they are currently working towards a CD project that features Karen’s compositions for piano. The free event takes place at 12:30 p.m.

Link of the day

Behind the velvet rope

When and Where

Music Ensemble auditions for Winter 2020 open for registration, December 2019 to Friday, January 24.

Free Instructional Dance and Martial Arts Week, Monday, January 13 to Friday, January 17.

Portfolio & Project Management Community of Practice (PPM CoP) session, "2020 Retrospective and Planning for 2020 (and beyond)" Wednesday, January 15, 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m., East Campus 5 (EC5), 1111. 

Research Ethics drop-in session for faculty and students, Wednesday, January 15, 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., Dana Porter Library (study booth on the main floor).

Campus Life Fair, Wednesday, January 15, 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., Student Life Centre.

NEW - Campus memorial event, Wednesday, January 15, 11:45 a.m., Federation Hall. Watch the livestream.

Legal and Immigration Services Lunch n’ Learn, “Foreign Visitors, including IVGS,” Wednesday, January 15, 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.,  NH 3308 and NH 3318. Please note: this event has been cancelled.

Noon Hour Concert: From the Prairies, Wednesday, January 15, 12:30 p.m., Conrad Grebel University College Chapel.

Conrad School of Entrepreneurship and Business MBET information session, Wednesday, January 15, 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m., E7 2324-2328. Please note: this event has been cancelled.

Chemistry Seminar featuring Jakob Magolan, Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, McMaster University, “A new ortho-allylation of phenols, enabled by alumina and inspired by antibiotic cannabinoids,” Wednesday, January 15, 2:30 p.m., C2-361 (Reading Room).

Concept by Velocity - Intro Session: What’s Your Problem? “Larry Smith’s legendary talk on how to find and solve killer problems,” Wednesday, January 15, 6:30 p.m., South Campus Hall 2nd Floor.

Coping Skills Seminar - Empowering Habit Change, Wednesday, January 15, 6:00 p.m., HS 2302 – Register on  GoSignMeUp.

Student Leadership Program – Building Your Credibility, Thursday, January 16, 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m., NH 1110. Register on UWaterloo Portal.

Chemistry Seminar featuring Robert Batey, Department of Chemistry, University of Toronto, “Natural Product Inspired Synthetic Methods Development: Targetting Macrocycles and Alkaloids,” Thursday, January 16, 2:30 p.m., C2-361 (Reading Room).

Grad Student Community and Conversation Circle, Thursday, January 16, 3:30 p.m., HS 1106 – Register on GoSignMeUp.

Student Leadership Program – Conflict ManagementThursday, January 16, 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., NH 1110. Register on UWaterloo Portal.

Concept by Velocity - Winter Term Kickoff, “Great resources, snacks, and swag? What a Concept!” Thursday, January 16, 5:30 p.m., Claudette Millar Hall Great Hall.

Conditioning Classes Registration Deadline, Friday, January 17.

Seminar: Waterloo AI Institute, “Emotion-cognition Interactions as Deep Active Inference, featuring Ryan Smith, Associate investigator, Laureate Institute for Brain Research, Friday, January 17, 10:30 a.m. DC 1302.

Knowledge Integration seminar: “Conflict Transformation with Contemplative Spiritualities and Mindfulness”, featuring speaker Betty Pries, co-founder and CEO, Credence & Co., Friday, January 17, 1:00 p.m., EV2-2002.

Philosophy Colloquium Series presents Dr. Dave DeVidi, “Bottom-Up Logical Pluralism,” Friday, January 17, 3:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., Hagey Hall 336,

Men’s Hockey vs. Guelph, Camp and Minor League Day, Friday, January 17, 7:00 p.m., CIF Arena.

NEW - Master of Taxation Open House, Saturday, January 18, 2020, 9:30 to 11:00 a.m., 220 Yonge St, Unit 115, Toronto. To register visit,

NEW - Women’s Volleyball vs. Lakehead, Bell Let’s Talk Day, Residence Day, Warrior Rec League Day, Saturday, January 18, 12:00 p.m., PAC Main Gym.

NEW – University Senate meeting, Monday, January 20, 3:30 p.m., NH 3407.

NEW - Coping Skills Seminar - Challenging Thinking, Monday, January 20, 4:30 p.m., HS 2302 – Register on GoSignMeUp.

NEW - Workday Support, Tuesday, January 21, 2020, 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., EC1 1021. No registration required.

NEW - NFRF Transformation Stream Notice of Intent Webinar for faculty, Tuesday, January 21, 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m., William G. Davis Centre, Room 1302.

NEW - Concept by Velocity - Turn Your Research Into a Startup, “Calling all graduate students, attend a panel discussion with local founders.”, Tuesday, January 21, 4:30 p.m., Conrad Hub, Engineering 7.

Positions available

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

  • Job ID# 2020-5076 - Co-op Service Specialist - CEE - Cooperative Education, USG 4 – 6
  • Job ID# 2019-5028 - Executive Administrator, Budgeting and Planning - Deputy Provost Associate Vice-President, Integrated Planning and Budgeting, USG 14
  • Job ID# 2020-5068 - Executive Assistant to the Dean - Dean of Arts Office, USG 7
  • Job ID# 2020-5089 - Financial Officer, MME - Mechanical & Mechatronics Engineering, USG 9
  • Job ID# 2020-5083 - Graduate Admissions Specialist - Grad Studies & Postdoctoral Affairs (GSPA), USG 8
  • Job ID# 2020-5081 – Groundsperson - Plant Operations-Grounds, CUPE
  • Job ID# 2020-5075 - Information Systems Specialist (Business Systems Analyst) - Information Systems and Technology, USG 10 - 13

Internal secondment opportunity:

  • Job ID# 2019-4925 - Project and Operations Manager, GEDI - Office of Research, USG 10