Friday, August 13, 2021

COVID-19 vaccination clinic closes at Waterloo's Health Sciences Campus

The entrance to the downtown Health Sciences Campus vaccination site.

By Alana Rigby.

The Health Sciences Campus (HSC) clinic will see its last patient today. Over 75,000 COVID-19 vaccinations were administered at the clinic, which was led by the Centre for Family Medicine and hosted in the University of Waterloo School of Pharmacy.

“I’m so proud of the efforts of our team at the School of Pharmacy and of people across the university who came together in a time of need to support this initiative,” says Andrea Edginton, director of the School of Pharmacy. “Through hosting the HSC clinic and dedicating time and energy, both to this clinic and to other vaccination efforts in the Region, we’ve made our commitment to our community clear.”

The regional HSC clinic, opened in March 2021, was a collaborative effort made possible by many partners. This clinic, along with others in the region, was supported by staff and volunteers, many of whom were members of the University of Waterloo community – faculty and staff from numerous departments, nearly 40 pharmacy students, and University alumni and retirees.

Here are some of their reflections:

Wasem Alsabbagh, Assistant Professor, School of Pharmacy, clinic staff

Wasem Alsabbagh and a team of volunteers at the vaccination clinic.“I appreciated every minute at the clinic, and it was a treat to work alongside students I was teaching. The whole team was in the same battlefield against the virus – we fought together and had one another’s backs.  I worked with amazing physicians, nurses, nurse practitioners, administrators and volunteers who collaborated to get as many shots in arms as possible. We used to spend the last hour of the clinic trying our best to avoid wasting any drops of the vaccine. 

I liked to stand in the room where we prepare the injections and look at people's faces. There is nothing like seeing the look of joy and relief in their eyes when they receive a vaccine that can help them prevent a deadly disease. It is priceless and cannot be expressed in words.” 

Sally Gunz, Professor Emeritus, School of Accounting and Finance, clinic volunteer

Professor Sally Gunz in an orange vest and PPE including face shield.“One particularly busy evening, I was the volunteer sending clients to vaccinators. I had two lines coming in and my head was on a swivel. It felt so good as a whole bunch of us, working together, just kept moving people through. I remember the stories from my parents, both medical workers in war time England. I had a tiny fraction of their experience and knew why they always talked about that period of their lives in such positive terms.

One of the best stretches was when the young people and then the kids started coming through. We experienced a real sense that the vaccine campaign was going to succeed. It was satisfying to be part of this community-wide effort to make us all safe.”

Trevor Holmes, Associate Director, Centre for Teaching Excellence, clinic volunteer

Trevor Holmes outside the clinic.“I volunteered because I believed I could play a tiny part in what feels like a very important historical moment. The School of Pharmacy’s teaching spaces were familiar to me as I’d had a small hand in the design early on (we’d never imagined the lecture halls would be repurposed in this way!). The vaccination experiences my own family members had at the HSC clinic were also very positive. At a time when I was struggling with how the pandemic had dragged on, supporting the clinic felt like personally, locally, and globally meaningful work and got me interacting with all kinds of people across the spectrum of eager, fearful, or hesitant. 

My most memorable moments are of helping people with visible or invisible disabilities navigate the clinic outside or inside. I felt I could play a part in giving them the experience my family members had, which was positive, when it could have just been overwhelming or traumatic.” 

Pruntha Kanagasundaram, second-year pharmacy student, clinic staff

Pruntha Kanagasundaram prepares vaccine doses.“I feel extremely proud to have supported the HSC clinic during this challenging time. I contributed to a tremendous effort to keep members of the community safe and to address vaccine hesitancy among people from many different walks of life.  Many individuals came in with uncertainty, questions and hesitancy about the vaccine, and left the clinic better informed and confident that they are doing their part to protect one another.

To have met people from such diverse backgrounds, and to be a source of information, comfort and guidance through times of uncertainty, was a tremendous privilege that I will always remember.”

Alysia Kolentsis, Associate Professor, English Language and Literature, clinic volunteer

Alysia Kolentsis in PPE.“I volunteered at the clinic from the first week it opened. I look back at those shifts as the most gratifying moments of the past few months; everything has felt so scary and beyond our control, and the clinic was a place that felt hopeful. I witnessed the best of people – staff, volunteers, and patients – in a time when it was all too easy to slip into despair. I also felt that I was doing something, however small, to help fight COVID. It gave me a purpose and a focus that was so necessary.”

The Health Sciences Campus may be closed, but a vaccination centre is now open on campus at Health Services and vaccinations are available to all students, employees, and family members of students and employees. See the University of Waterloo coronavirus website to learn more.

You can also visit the Region of Waterloo website for more on booking a vaccination at other regional clinics.

Celebrate 100 episodes of Beyond the Bulletin with us

Beyond the Bulletin banner featuring two vintage microphones.

There's no party, no cake, but there is a fun contest and a chance to win what we think is a pretty cool prize. 

To mark our 100th episode, we are giving away a $100 gift card for the W Store on the main UWaterloo campus.

For your chance to win, complete the Beyond the Bulletin Quiz, a trivia challenge that tests your knowledge of the people and information featured on Beyond the Bulletin.

If you need help, there is an entire show archive on the Daily Bulletin website and Soundcloud to jog your memory.

No purchase necessary. Click here for the full rules. There is a limit of one entry per person and per email address.

GreenHouse announces winners of the spring term Social Impact Fund

A screenshot of the GreenHouse awards event taking place over a virtual group call.

A message from St. Paul's GreenHouse.

At the end of this spring term, seven innovation teams pitched their latest ventures to a panel of judges for GreenHouse's 23rd Social Impact Showcase.

This termly event celebrates the amazing work that GreenHouse students have accomplished throughout their social innovation journeys. Six out of the seven student teams were awarded funding to support their ventures from the Social Impact Fund, established by St. Paul’s University College.

This term’s students focused their ventures on some of the most relevant health and sustainability issues impacting our daily lives.

And the winners are…

mentalED, awarded $5,000, is focused on creating comprehensive mental health education for Canadian youth and is led by Graeme Beaton, Faculty of Science.

DECOMP, awarded $5,000, a biotechnology startup providing a better solution for plastic waste pollution, pitched by team member, Isha Simon, an undergraduate student in the  Faculty of Science

Bebaha Virtual Health Care, awarded $3,500, a virtual healthcare platform for women with the aim to help empower, educate and diagnose in a confidential, safe and reliable manner.  Bebaha is led by Rashi Jaising, who recently graduated with a Bachelor of Arts and is pursuing a Master of Business, Entrepreneurship and Technology at the Conrad School of Entrepreneurship and Business this fall. Rashi  also won the People’s Choice Award, earning $1,000 for her venture.

KELPH, awarded $1,500, an inland kelp farming system that enables kelp farming all year round. KELPH is led by Caleb Seward, a Masters student in Chemical Engineering.

BioCycle, awarded $1,500, is seeking to collect and biodegrade single-use menstrual products.  BioCycle is led by Krystal Yang, undergraduate student in the Faculty of Science.

Warrior Kidz, awarded $1,000, is partnering with myTurn and Waterloo Public Library for more intuitive database management and better community outreach for KidsAbility - an organization committed to providing rehabilitation services for differently abled children. Members of the Warrior Kidz team include: Sarankan Thiru, Solana Redway, Prachi Dhanky and Caitlin Li, four undergraduate students from the faculties of Engineering, Science, and Arts.

Congratulations to all the students who participated in the Spring 2021 Social Impact Showcase and thank you to the over 450 community members who took the time to vote for their favourite venture. Here’s to our students continued success moving forward.

Beyond the Bulletin Podcast Episode 98

Beyond the Bulletin Podcast logo featuring two vintage microphones.

The latest episode of the Beyond the Bulletin Podcast is now live. Psychology professor Dillon Browne discusses the stress you and the people in your life may be feeling about returning to classes or the work environment this fall. Employees and students will have to anonymously self-declare their vaccination status to come to campus. Jean Becker facilitates a session of the Anti-Racism Book Club that will cover a book on reconciliation. And Velocity receives $6.5 million to continue support for early-stage startups and further growth of the area’s tech ecosystem.

Link of the day

International Left Handers 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.

Course templates are available within your course in LEARN to help you build and edit your content and assignment pages quickly.

The following workshops, webinars, and events are offered by the KL team (CTE, CEL, ITMS, LIB):

Employees can access resources to help them work remotely, including managing University records and privacy of personal information. Here are some tips for staying healthy while working from home.

Stay informed about COVID cases on campus by consulting the COVID case tracker.

The Writing and Communication Centre has virtual services and programs to help undergrads, grad students, postdocs and faculty members with academic writing.

Co-op students can get help finding a job and find supports to successfully work remotely, develop new skills, access wellness and career information, and contact a co-op or career advisor.

The Centre for Career Action assists undergraduates, graduate students, postdocs, staff, faculty, and alumni through navigating career services that are right for them. You can attend a one-on-one appointment or same day drop-in session at the CCA for assistance with cover letter writing, career planning and much more. You can also book an appointment online or visit our Live Chat to connect with our Client Support Team. The CCA is here to help you.

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 TreatmentGood2Talk is a post-secondary student helpline available to all students.

The Library continues to offer virtual access to learning and research materials as well as through their book pickup and delivery services. Davis Centre Library study space is open by appointment Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Special Collections & Archives can also be accessed by appointment. Library staff are available for questions via Ask Us. Full details of current service offerings can be found on their Services Updates page. The Library has also 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.

The Sexual Violence Prevention and Response Office (SVPRO) supports all members of the University of Waterloo campus community who have experienced, or been impacted, by sexual violence. This includes all students, staff, faculty and visitors on the main campus, the satellite campuses, and at the affiliated and federated Waterloo Institutes and Colleges. For support, email: or visit the SVPRO website.

The Indigenous Initiatives Office is a central hub that provides guidance, support, and resources to all Indigenous and non-Indigenous campus community members and oversees the university Indigenization strategy.

The Waterloo Indigenous Student Centre, based at St. Paul’s University College, provides support and resources for Indigenous students, and educational outreach programs for the broader community, including lectures, and events.

WUSA supports for students:

Peer support  - MATES, Glow Centre, RAISE, Women’s Centre - Visit to book an appointment

Bike Centre – Open via Appointments and Rentals

Campus Response Team, ICSN, Off Campus Community and Co-op Connection all available online. Check for more details.

Food Support Service food hampers are currently available from the Turnkey Desk on weekdays from 7:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. in the Student Life Centre. If you have any questions please email us at

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 caps@wusa.caMore information is available.

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 (Online Fitness)

Fitness Classes (CIF GYM 3). Power Yoga, HIIT and Zumba. Only $4/class. Advanced registration required.

Warriors vs. Laurier Blood Donation Battle. Join your fellow Warriors, donate blood and help us win the Blood Battle against Laurier for a second year in a row. Set up a profile or add the PFL code: UNIV960995 to your account if you have a account already. Questions? Contact

Drop-in to Warrior Virtual Study Halls on Wednesdays from 5:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. Come together in this virtual space to set goals and work independently or in groups each week.

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

New Faculty Teaching Days, Monday, August 9 to Tuesday, August 17.

Vulnerability to Viability (V2V) Global Partnership session, "Rethinking Coastal Sustainability and Development," Friday, August 13, 9:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. live on YouTube.

2021 World Fuel Cell Conference, Monday, August 16 to Friday, August 20.

NEW - Final examinations end, Monday, August 16.

Anti-racism book club, “21 Things You May Not Know About the Indian Act: Helping Canadians Make Reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples a Reality” (2018) by Bob Joseph, Tuesday, August 17, 12 noon to 1:00 p.m.  

Quantum Today: Dimension Reductions in Quantum Key Distribution, Thursday, August 19, 12 noon.

NEW - Co-operative work term ends, Friday, August 20.

NEW - Deadline to get "Fees Arranged" for the fall term, Tuesday, August 24.

De-Escalating Difficult Student Situations, Tuesday, August 24, 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.

QPR Mental Health Training for Faculty and Staff, Thursday, August 26, 9:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.

NEW - Fall Orientation, Monday, August 30 to Friday, September 3.

NEW - Labour Day holiday, most University operations closed, Monday, September 6.

NEW - Fall co-operative work term begins, Tuesday, September 7.

NEW - Classes and lectures begin, Wednesday, September 8.