Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Proof of vaccination will be required for campus access

The University of Waterloo sign in an autumn setting.

The University of Waterloo is strengthening its safety measures against COVID-19 by requiring anyone coming to its campuses to provide proof of vaccination beginning September 7, with accommodations available for medical or human rights grounds.

"Ensuring high rates of vaccination remains the most important way we can protect public health during the pandemic and reduce the spread of COVID-19," wrote President Vivek Goel in a memo circulated to the campus community yesterday. "In recent weeks, we have progressively strengthened our own approach to health and safety on campus while we advocated for a coordinated and consistent government approach to vaccine policy."

"I am pleased that the Council of Medical Officers of Health have recommended that all post-secondary institutions in the province must require proof of vaccination against COVID-19 for people coming to campuses," President Goel writes. "This provides a consistent set of recommendations for implementation of vaccination policies across regions. I am therefore encouraged that all members of the Council of Ontario Universities have agreed to act on this recommendation."

"This means that we are further strengthening the plans we announced on August 10 regarding self-declaration of vaccination status. Starting September 7, everyone in the University of Waterloo community, including visitors, must provide proof of vaccination before coming to campus."

"We will send you instructions on how to submit your proof of vaccination or apply for accommodation by the end of this week," President Goel writes. "We are encouraging everyone to submit proof of vaccination as soon as possible. We recognize that some people may not yet have started or completed their vaccination process, so anyone who is not yet vaccinated must provide proof of being fully vaccinated no later than October 17, 2021 and must participate in the rapid testing program if coming to campus before that date."

"We will provide accommodations for rare cases where individuals cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons or grounds protected by the Ontario Human Rights Code," The president's memo continues. "Any unvaccinated individuals who are granted an accommodation and anyone not yet fully vaccinated must test negative on a rapid antigen test no more than 72 hours before coming to our campuses and buildings."

"We also expect further guidance from the government on the health and safety regulations and guidance that will be in place for the fall term. You can expect to hear more from us on this guidance and what it means for our fall plans later this week."

"We are grateful for your understanding, patience and adaptability as we prepare for an important fall term ahead," President Goel's memo concludes.

More information will be available later this week on the COVID-19 information website.

COVID-19 testing, rapid screening and vaccination is available through Campus Wellness for all University of Waterloo students, employees, postdocs and their family members.

If you are struggling with your mental health during these changing times, reach out for support through Human Resources, Occupational Health, Here247 and Wellness Together Canada. Ongoing employees can access supports through Homewood Health, the University’s Employee and Family Assistance Program partner or at 1-800-663-1142.

Orientation kicks off August 30

Waterloo Orientation banner.

Led in partnership with the Waterloo Undergraduate Student Association (WUSA), the Student Success Office and all six faculties, Waterloo Orientation will be offered virtually for new undergraduate students from Monday August 30 to Friday September 3, 2021. This earlier date ensures Orientation programming will not compete with other priorities and demands on students during their first week of classes and will offer new online events, and reimagined Waterloo traditions. Whether students are on or off campus, Orientation aims to provide participants with a sense of belonging, even when engaging with us online.  

Waterloo Orientation volunteers participate in a group video call.

In lieu of traditional, centrally run Graduate Student Orientation, Waterloo Grad Ready has been created for incoming master’s and doctoral students. With support from the Graduate Student Association (GSA), and Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs (GSPA), the Grad Ready program offers a virtual welcome, introduces key services, and provides peer-to-peer connections for graduate students through live sessions and message boards. Faculties will provide some virtual and/or in-person events for students.

The decision to hold all central programming online is in recognition of the ongoing uncertainty around public health guidelines for large scale events, and the impact the Delta variant of COVID-19 has had on Waterloo Region. 

We're here to help 

To assist students navigating campus for the first time, our annual Here to Help campaign has been reinvented. Wayfinding and information booths will be available in high-traffic areas on campus from Tuesday, September 7 to Friday September 10, 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and will be staffed with volunteers from several units. If you are interested in assisting new students, pick up a Here to Help sticker from a booth. Wearing the sticker signals that you’re more than just a friendly face – it shows that you are ready to share your knowledge of our campus and welcome new students to our community. 

To learn more about all new student transition activities, visit  

United Way campaign releases 2020 annual report

The University's six Deans dressed as Star Trek characters.

A message from the University of Waterloo United Way Campaign.

Our campaign in 2020

What does “go red” look like during a pandemic? Like the rest of campus, we took a virtual approach in order to keep our community safe. This meant a little more creativity and ingenuity – but like any other United Way Campaign, we were blown away by the generosity of the University of Waterloo and their ability to come together in a crisis. COVID-19 definitely added challenges, but we rose to the occasion.  

The best and brightest moments

As we gear up for the 2021 United Way Campaign, we’d like to share our appreciation for the hard work, support, and enthusiasm from our campus community – committee members, volunteers, and donors – during our 2020 campaign. Whether you attended a virtual event, executed a fundraising activity within your department, or made a donation, every little bit helps. Your support helped to raise over $230,000 for the 2020 campaign. Read the full report online.

Our impact

  • Over 40 individual donors gave to United Way (employees, retirees and students).
  • 103 new donors supported the campaign – that’s just over 22 per cent of our 460 total donors.
  • Our Ambassadors executed 15 events, contributing over $12,000 to our campaign.

Event highlights

  • University of Waterloo Deans paraded to Senate in Star Trek costumes;
  • The first ever virtual cooking shows had 'souper' turnouts – members of our campus community enjoyed their butternut squash soup and risotto; and
  • Incredible participation of our volunteers – including the Library, Engineering, Health, and more.

Impact of your investment

Our campaign efforts contributed to:

  • Funding programs to help those in need of counselling and mental health services.
  • Supporting programs helping youth enhance their social and educational skills.
  • Funding programs connecting local immigrants to their community.
  • Supporting programs that help those living in poverty in our community.

2021 campaign is coming soon

As we look ahead to our 2021 campaign on October 1st, we don’t want to forget our “every little bit counts” sentiment. By coming together as a campus community, we can help those who need it most.

IST publishes summer newsletter; other notes

IST newsletter banner.

"The summer 2021 issue of the IST Newsletter is now available," says a note from IST. "Read about the new WCMS 3 platform; see project updates on migrating to Jira Service Management, supporting the move to Oracle Cloud, and moving from N: drive to OneDrive; learn about our sustainable IT initiatives; and read about a recent shift in integration technologies. Be sure to subscribe to receive our term-based newsletter."

English Conversation Circles banner.The Writing and Communication Centre’s English Conversation Circles will be starting again soon. The program is designed to help undergrad and grad students improve their English conversation skills. It runs from September 13 to October 29. Sessions will run Tuesdays from 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. and Fridays from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. "Make friends and build vocabulary," says a message from WCC. "Register today."

Upcoming office closures

Counselling Services will be closed on Thursday, August 26 at 12 noon and will re-open on Friday, August 27 at 8:30 a.m.

Link of the day

Charlie Watts, 1941-2021

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. Special Collections & Archives can also be accessed by appointmentDavis Centre study space will not be available between August 17 and September 6 as the Library prepares for the fall term. During this time, Library resources and supports will continue to be accessible virtually and staff available for questions via chat Monday to Friday 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday 12 noon to 4:00 p.m. The Library will be closed on September 6 for Labour Day. Full details on current services and hours are available on our Service Update webpage. Library staff are available for questions via Ask Us

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.

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

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

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

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

Classes and lectures begin, Wednesday, September 8.

Positions available

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

  • Job ID# 2021-7117 - 2nd Class Stationary Engineer - Plant Operations, CUPE
  • Job ID# 2021-7085 - Academic Assistant, MSc and PhD Programs - SPHS, USG 5
  • Job ID# 2021-6806 - Academic Integrity Specialist - Science Undergrad Office, USG 7
  • Job ID# 2021-6555 - Academic Programs Administrator/Advisor - Conrad School of Entrepreneurship and Business, USG 7
  • Job ID# 2021-7046 - Administrative Assistant, Outreach, Equity and Diversity - Engineering Outreach, USG 6
  • Job ID# 2021-7105 - Administrative Coordinator - Professional Services - Optometry and Vision Science, USG 6
  • Job ID# 2021-7041 - Assistant Manager, Food Operations - WUSA, USG 6
  • Job ID# 2021-7043 - Coordinator, Residence Learning - Campus Housing, USG 7
  • Job ID# 2021-7044 - Examinations Specialist - Centre for Extended Learning, USG 7
  • Job ID# 2021-6781 - Financial Controls and Communications Analyst - Finance, USG 10
  • Job ID# 2021-7033 - Financial Coordinator - Management Sciences, USG 7
  • Job ID# 2021-7073 - Institutional Analyst - Institutional Analysis and Planning, USG 10 - 11
  • Job ID# 2021-6592 - Manager, Advocacy and Stakeholder Relations - WUSA, USG 10
  • Job ID# 2021-6542 - Manager, Documents & Digital Archives - Plant Operations, USG 12
  • Job ID# 2021-7010 - Marketing Specialist - Waterloo Undergraduate Student Association, USG 7
  • Job ID# 2021-6945 - Recruitment Operations Coordinator - Registrar's Office, USG 7
  • Job ID# 2021-7107 - Research Experience and Ethics Administrator - Psychology, USG 9
  • Job ID# 2021-7064 - Specialist, Content Strategy - Office of the Registrar, USG 9
  • Job ID# 2021-7065 - Systems Integration Specialist - IST, USG 11 - 12
  • Job ID# 2021-6917 - Video Specialist - Co-operative and Experiential Education Business Services, USG 9

Secondments/Internal temporary opportunities

  • Job ID# 2021-6754 - Copy Editor - Centre for Extended Learning, USG 7
  • Job ID# 2021-7098 - Instructional Support Coordinator - WIL Programs, USG 8 – 10
  • Job ID# 2021-7071 - International Manager - Co-operative and Experiential Education, USG 13
  • Job ID# 2021-7077 - Program Delivery Team Lead - Engineering Outreach, USG 6
  • Job ID# 2021-7113 - Project Manager, Infrastructure - Plant Operations, USG 9 – 12
  • Job ID# 2021-7070 - Research Project Accountant - Office of Research, USG 9 – 11
  • Job ID# 2021-6975 - Social Media Co-ordinator - Marketing & Undergraduate Recruitment, USG 7

Affiliated and Federated Institutions of Waterloo opportunities