Friday, October 16, 2020

    Brandon Sweet
    University Communications

    Four brilliant researchers join Waterloo on fellowships

    A collage of AMTD fellows.

    This article was originally published on Waterloo Stories.

    Four world-class academics pursuing research to improve society are the inaugural recipients of the AMTD Waterloo Global Talent Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Waterloo.

    The five-year program was made possible by a generous donation from the AMTD Foundation, led by Waterloo alumnus Calvin Choi (BA ’01)

    “In what has been a difficult year for so many of us, the process of meeting and getting to know these incredible scholars has been absolutely inspirational,” Jeff Casello, associate vice-president, Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs, said. “The postdoctoral community at Waterloo has been and continues to be transformative. Mr. Choi’s generosity has allowed us to attract the unmatched talent of these exceptional postdocs which will accelerate the University’s transformative work.”

    Meet the inaugural recipients of the AMTD Waterloo Global Talent Postdoctoral Fellowship:

    Oluwakemi (Kemi) Amodu, Faculty of Applied Health Sciences

    Oluwakemi Amodu’s research examines the accessibility of reproductive health resources for women in Nigeria who have been internally displaced due to terrorism by Boko Haram. She believes that “without health care for all, there’s no health care at all.”  Her objective is to promote an intervention program that is situated within the context of cultural knowledge, with broader applications for global health-care systems. Amodu will be working with Craig Janes, professor and director of the School of Public Health and Health Systems. An outstanding scholar who completed her Bachelor of Nursing in Nigeria and her Master of Nursing at the University of Alberta, she became a registered nurse in 2018. Amodu has presented her work to the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development and holds numerous scholarships and awards that recognize her academic achievements and community service. In addition, she placed first at the University of Alberta 3MT and second in the 3MT event for Western Canada.  She leads several community initiatives including the Health and Community Wellness Working group and serves as an advisory committee member for Gradual Rising of Women (GROW), a group that seeks to educate and empower immigrant women. During her time at Waterloo Amodu is also interested in connecting with the graduate student community about methods for advocacy in research and policy. Read more about the work that Amodu will be exploring on the Faculty of Applied Health Sciences website.

    Rhea Hoskin, Faculty of Arts

    Rhea Hoskin is an outstanding scholar examining the role of anti-femininity as a catalyst for violence and discrimination. Hoskin’s research will address how anti-femininity manifests itself and results in violence and decreased health outcomes for all. Hoskin completed her PhD at Queen’s University and was the recipient of the Governor General’s Gold Medal. She currently holds the Ontario Women’s Health Postdoctoral Award. She has received numerous awards for her academic achievements, having produced 26 publications, numerous contributions to national and international conferences and has been covered in the media, including Psychology Today and International Business Times UK. In addition to her research, Hoskin has taught courses as an adjunct professor at St. Francis Xavier University. While at Waterloo, Hoskin will be working with professors Toni Serafini (Department of Sexuality, Marriage, & Family Studies at St. Jerome’s University) and Andrea Quinlan (Department of Sociology and Legal Studies), to examine her research questions using an interdisciplinary approach. Hoskin said her research has the “capacity to disrupt and shift the way scholars and activists mobilize around gender-based violence.” Read more about the work that Hoskin will be exploring on the Faculty of Arts website.

    Alex Krolewski, Faculty of Science

    Alex Krolewski’s research focuses on fundamental questions in physics and astronomy and aims to address the cause of the accelerated expansion of the universe. His work, in collaboration with professor Will Percival in the Department of Physics and Astronomy, will utilize the DESI survey (an international collaboration aiming to produce a 3D map of the universe) and the Simons Observatory (SO) survey to examine gravitational light lensing of galaxies in the early universe and will transform our understanding of galaxies and our universe. Krolewski has an outstanding academic record. Krolewski completed his undergraduate degree at Harvard, his MA in Astrophysics at the University of California, Berkeley and has recently completed his PhD at Berkeley. Krolewski has published eight papers and given talks at numerous prestigious institutions including Princeton, Stanford and his previous institutions, Harvard and Berkeley.  In addition, he has worked on curriculum development for a Virtual Reality (VR) depiction of the sky for an after-school program for middle school students. While at Waterloo, Krolewski will interact with the newly formed Waterloo Centre for Astrophysics and the Perimeter Institute, contribute to making the University a center for DESI survey activity. Read more about the work that Krolewski will be exploring on the Faculty of Science website.

    Edris Madadian, Faculty of Engineering 

    Edris Madadian is a leading scholar in biofuels, particularly the reuse of waste biomass to the creation of energy in carbon-neutral ways. Madadian’s research, overseen by David Simakov, professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering, will stimulate high impact multi- and inter-disciplinary research on major environmental and societal problems, creating a sustainable future and enhancing our world through technology. Madadian’s scholarly record is exceptional. He completed his undergraduate and graduate degrees in his home country of Iran. In 2013, he began his PhD studies at McGill University in bioresource engineering. After completing his PhD, he stayed at McGill to serve as a postdoctoral fellow and in 2018, Madadian was awarded a prestigious Killam Postdoctoral Fellowship at Dalhousie University where he has continued his research program. Madadian joins Waterloo having produced 40 refereed publications and memberships in multiple professional societies in Canada and internationally. He also has an outstanding teaching record, having taught graduate seminars in his area of research, as well as multiple courses in mathematics at all undergraduate levels. During his time at Waterloo, Madadian will continue his interactions with government and industry, exploring the potential for funded research and the possible commercialization of his research work. Read more about the work that Madadian will be exploring on the Faculty of Engineering website.

    Food Services provides update on operations

    Flatbread cooking on a grill.

    A message from Food Services.

    As the term progresses, Food Services has been learning about how to better serve the campus. We have made some changes to hours of operation and offerings to align with serving the campus community what they want and when they want it.

    The changes are as follows:

    • Tim Hortons SLC will be reducing hours from September, and will be open 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
    • Tim Hortons DC will be reducing its hours to 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
    • As of October 26, Tim Hortons SCH will be closed for the rest of the term.
    • Rolltation in DC Bytes will continue to be open to the public and will also be offered on the app for delivery or pick up. Hakka Wok in DC Bytes will be closed for the rest of the term.
    • Brubakers in SLC will open Shawarma Hub on the app for delivery and pick up.
    • As of October 19, all Brubakers offerings (Pizza Pizza, Subway, Shawarma Hub) will only be available in the app for delivery and pick up. The hours are 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
    • Starbucks STC remains open 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
    • Catering Eats and UC Eats remains available on the app from 11:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

    For more information visit our website.

    March of the Deans and other notes

    There is still time to register for the viewing of the March of the Deans, a tradition where the six faculty deans dress up to support our campus’s United Way campaign. The viewing will take place on Monday, October 19 during the Senate meeting. To register, request to join the up-coming meeting as a guest.

    Flags at the University were lowered to half-mast yesterday in tribute to Jason Arbour, a second-year Electrical and Computer Engineering student who died earlier this week, and whose private funeral also took place Wednesday. The University also posted a bereavement notice on the Waterloo news site. The University encourages members of the campus community who are affected by this news and feel they need support to contact any of the following resources:

    A woman stares dejectedly at a laptop screen.The University’s Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) provider Homewood Health is organizing a webinar entitled “COVID-19: The Second Wave and Your Mental Health” and has added extra sessions due to overwhelming demand.

    “With the arrival of fall, government and health officials at federal, provincial and regional levels have started, and in many cases, enacted, planning to minimize the complications and difficulties we face with the onset of a second wave of COVID-19,” says a note from Homewood Health. “Organizations have endured challenges throughout the past several months and will continue to be affected as the number of new cases continues to rise. Moving forward, employers may face additional obstacles as employees may require continuing or new forms of support as the pandemic continues. Some individuals may experience continued or amplified difficulty with mental health, anxiety, depression and fear. These added levels of stress and uncertainty can begin to take a toll on one’s mental health and, in some cases, lead to burnout.”

    “The webinar is focused on the unique challenges we collectively face with the onset of a second wave of COVID-19,” says Homewood Health. “In this one-hour webinar, employees will increase their understanding of the effects of prolonged periods of stress, recognize signs and symptoms of chronic stress and burnout (including personal and workplace risk factors) and acquire self-care and resiliency strategies to mitigate the negative impacts of chronic stress both personally and professionally.”

    Homewood Health will be hosting additional sessions on Wednesday, October 28 from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., EST and PST.

    Moderating the session will be Sandy Kriegish, Homewood Health Clinical Manager and Account Executive.

    Beyond the Bulletin Podcast Episode 63

    Beyond the Bulletin logo featuring two vintage microphones.

    The latest episode of the Beyond the Bulletin Podcast is now live. Waterloo Ready, a pre-orientation introduced for Fall Term, gave upper-year students a chance to mentor incoming students. Miila Tuju, from the Faculty of Environment, was one of the mentors and shares her experience. Senate approves the implementation of a new survey to replace the existing course evaluations. The Sustainability Office has organized a number of challenges for Zero Waste Week. And there is another update to the University's guidelines on face coverings.

    Link of the day

    World Anaesthesia Day

    When and Where to get support

    Students can visit the Student Success Office online for supports including academic development, international student resources, leadership development, exchange and study abroad, and opportunities to get involved.

    Instructors can visit the Keep Learning website to get support on adapting their teaching and learning plans for an online environment. The following workshops are current offerings from the KL team (CTE, CEL, ITMS, LIB):

    Getting Ready to Facilitate Online Courses: TA Training, beginning Tuesday, October 13.

    Remote Course Design Essentials, beginning August 26.

    Independent Remote Course Design Essentials. Self-directed, continuous self-enrollment course in LEARN.

    Getting Ready to Facilitate Online Courses: TA Training, Tuesday, October 13 to November 10.

    Supporting Student Mental Health (for Instructors): self-directed, continuous self-enrollment course in LEARN.

    Learning from Our Remote Teaching Experiences, Tuesday, October 20, 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

    Employees can access resources to help them work remotely, including managing University records and privacy of personal information.

    Interested in learning more about engaging your students in an online course? The Centre for Extended Learning has created a new resource for you called "Fostering Engagement: Facilitating Online Courses in Higher Education"

    This Open Educational Resource was designed for post-secondary instructors and teaching assistants who would like to better understand the critical role of facilitation in online course delivery, and build practical skills and strategies that are relevant, effective, and authentic.

    Here are some tips for staying healthy while working from home.

    The Writing and Communication Centre is rolling out virtual services and programs for fall term: 

    • Undergrad students -- work with us to brainstorm, draft, revise, and polish assignments by meeting with our writing advisors in virtual appointments. Chat with our friendly and knowledgeable peer tutors in our virtual drop-ins and PJ-friendly writing groups. Or experience an online workshop at your own pace. 
    • First-year Warriors! Check out Waterloo Ready to Write to build your skills for writing success.
    • Graduate Students -- meet with an advisor in a virtual appointments, take an online workshop,  join the grad writing community at our Virtual Writing Cafés and #WaterlooWrites groups, develop your academic voice at Speak Like a Scholar, or make progress on your thesis at Dissertation Boot Camp.
    • Instructors and faculty -- Request and access WCC workshops for use in your courses, join a virtual writing group, or speak with a writing advisor about a writing project.

    We understand that these circumstances can be troubling, and you may need to speak with someone for emotional support. Good2Talk is a post-secondary student helpline based in Ontario, Canada that is available to all students. If you feel overwhelmed or anxious and need to talk to somebody, please contact the University’s Campus Wellness services, either Health Services or  Counselling Services. You can also contact the University's Centre for Mental Health Research and Treatment.

    The Library has published a resource guide on how to avoid information overload.

    The Faculty Association of the University of Waterloo (FAUW) continues to advocate for its members. Check out the FAUW blog for more information.

    The University of Waterloo Staff Association (UWSA) continues to advocate for its members. Check out the UWSA blog for more information.

    WUSA supports for students:

    Food Support Service food hampers are currently available from the Turnkey Desk on weekdays from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. in the Student Life Centre. If you have any questions please email us at

    The Bike Centre – Now open by appointment for your bicycle repair and rental needs in the Student Life Centre. For more information or to schedule an appointment, please go to:

    Centre for Academic Policy Support - CAPS is here to assist Waterloo undergraduates throughout their experience in navigating academic policy in the instances of filing petitions, grievances and appeals. Please contact them at More information at

    WUSA Commissioners who can help in a variety of areas that students may be experiencing during this time:

    WUSA Student Legal Protection Program - Seeking legal counsel can be intimidating, especially if it’s your first time facing a legal issue. The legal assistance helpline provides quick access to legal advice in any area of law, including criminal. Just call 1-833-202-4571

    Empower Me is a confidential mental health and wellness service that connects students with qualified counsellors 24/7. They can be reached at 1-833-628-5589.

    When and Where (but mostly when)

    Healthy Warriors at Home. Free programming including Online Fitness, Health Webinars, Personalized Nutrition and more from Warriors Athletics and Rec. Open to students, staff, faculty and alumni. Register today.

    Renison English Language Institute continues to offer virtual events and workshops to help students practice their English language skills.

    Fall Reading Week, Saturday, October 10 to Sunday, October 18.

    Dissertation Boot Camp, Tuesday, October 13 to Friday, October 16.

    Graduate Studies Endowment Fund project application deadline, Friday, October 16. Email if you have any questions.

    IT Seminar: Before the World Stopped, Friday, October 16, 9:00 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. Join online.

    Giving Bad News Workshop, hosted by the Conflict Management & Human Rights Office, facilitated by Joseph Pazzano, Friday, October 16, 10:00 a.m. to 12 noon.

    Concept $5K & Climate Change Grant Applications Close, Sunday, October 18, 11:59 p.m.

    NEW - University Senate meeting, Monday, October 19, 3:30 p.m.

    Portage-Global Water Futures Research Data Management webinar seriesLook Before You Leap: Adventures in Curating and Preserving Research Data, Tuesday, October 20, 1:00 p.m. Registration details are available here.

    NEW - Free Yoga on Warrior FieldWednesday, October 21, 12:00 p.m. Class free for all Students, Staff and Faculty. Register today.

    NEW - Noon Hour Concert: Duo Tubello, Wednesday, October 21, 12:30 p.m., online, free.