Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Registration opens today for Keeping Well at Work 2021

Keeping Well at Work conference logo.

A message from Organizational and Human Development (OHD).

In this day and age, is it even possible that our work can be part of our personal wellness? With the amount of time we dedicate to work – thinking about it, preparing for it, travelling for it, in addition to the time we’re working – it must.

This October, Organizational and Human Development (in partnership with the Healthy Workplace Committee) will explore what it means to Keep Well at Work with two focused conference days for UWaterloo employees on October 13 and 19, along with sharing daily wellness inspiration on the Daily Bulletin and OHD’s Twitter feed @OHDuwaterloo.

Keynote speakers

Keeping Well at Work (KW@W) 2021 will open and close with two powerhouse Keynote speakers:

Anthony McLean.Anthony McLean has delivered hundreds of inspiring talks across Canada, the US and Australia on diversity, anti-racism, and mental health. His research-backed tools and actionable strategies leave his audiences inspired to bring their best every day.

As KW@W’s opening Keynote, on Wednesday, October 13, 2021 at 10:30 a.m., Anthony will tackle The Intersection of Mental Health and Anti-Racism. Register.

Robyne Hanley-DafoeDr. Robyne Hanley-Dafoe described as one of the most sought-after, engaging, thought-provoking, and truly transformative international speakers and scholars in her field, Dr. Robyne is a multi-award-winning psychology and education instructor who specializes in resiliency, navigating stress and change, and personal wellness.

Join Dr. Hanley-Dafoe, KW@W’s closing keynote, on Thursday, October 19 at 1:30 p.m. when she’ll speak to the timely topic of Everyday Resiliency in Ever-Changing Times.

This year’s virtual conference workshops and daily inspirations will cover topics about nutrition, mental health, physical well-being, wellness through an equity lens, community and campus wellness and overall personal health.

Registration opens today, September 21 at 12:00 noon.

Questions? Connect with Organizational & Human Development.

Dean of Environment Nominating Committee to begin consultations

A nominating committee has been constituted under the terms of Policy 45 is now in place and has begun the process of identifying Dean Jean Andrey’s successor.

"Over the coming weeks, committee members intend to consult broadly," writes James Rush, vice-president, academic & provost in a memo circulated to Faculty of Environment employees and students. "Your input and feedback will be very important in shaping the position profile and informing the direction of the search."

Dean Andrey's second term as Dean of Environment runs to June 30, 2022.

Members of the Faculty of Environment are invited to consider the following questions and provide input and feedback:

  1. What are the issues, challenges and opportunities facing the Faculty of Environment?
  2. What are your aspirations for the Faculty in the next five years?
  3. What advice do you have for the search committee as to the background, credentials, qualifications and leadership style that should be sought in the next dean?
  4. Do you have any suggestions as to individuals to whom the committee should speak about this opportunity?

Members of the Faculty of Environment are encourages to convey their views on matters concerning the deanship in writing to Mike Grivicic, associate university secretary (mgrivicic@uwaterloo.ca) or to any member of the nominating committee no later than October 8, 2021. Your feedback will be held in confidence within the committee.

Dean of Environment Nominating Committee members

Celebrate International Education Week from November 15 to 19

International Education Week banner.

A message from Waterloo International.

International Education Week (IEW) is an opportunity to recognize and promote the value of international education, experiences and collaboration.  It celebrates outbound activities, internationalization at home, and is intended to bring global conversations to campus. This year, the University of Waterloo will celebrate IEW from 15-19 of November, showcasing international education through a variety of programs, events, collaborations, debates, discussions, and an array of activities. Please join Waterloo International in celebrating our international students, staff and faculty at home and let’s experience the world together.

Interested in hosting an event for International Education Week? Waterloo International is currently seeking interest from student groups, academic support units, departments and faculties interested in hosting international education-themed event during this week.   Please contact Aisha Shibli for more information and to register your event on the IEW calendar of events. Interested parties are advised to submit their proposed events to Waterloo International before November 1, 2021.

As planning continues to unfold, and we start to book events in celebration of international education, please continue to check the Waterloo International – International Education Week webpage for the lineup of events.

New tools and resources available for persons living with dementia

An elderly woman stretches her arms out in front of her.

By Eugenia Xenos Anderson. 

Many things change when a person is diagnosed with dementia, but one thing that doesn’t have to is the ability to exercise.

Dementia-Inclusive Choices for Exercise (DICE) is a cross-Canada research team, led by the University of Waterloo, that has developed a new series of tools and resources to help exercise providers create inclusive programs and spaces for people living with dementia and support their knowledge and confidence to continue or begin exercising.

The team is made up of 29 people from 10 organizations, including researchers, persons with dementia, care partners and 10 community organizations from Nova Scotia to Northern British Columbia.

“Exercise has important benefits to physical, mental and social well-being for people living with dementia,” says Laura Middleton, a Kinesiology and Health Sciences professor who leads the group. “People living with dementia who take up exercise have improved functional abilities day to day. This may be the result of several direct benefits, including improved aerobic fitness, better balance and mobility, increased strength and, less conclusively, increased cognitive function.”

Middleton says there are also important social benefits to exercise, especially when it is done with others. “People living with dementia receive encouragement and social support from their instructor and peers. They feel a sense of community and inclusion. As a result of improvements during exercise, they can also feel more confident in all aspects of life. For those who have been active earlier in their life, exercise can help maintain their sense of identity despite dementia.”

Middleton assembled the DICE research team after collaborating with the Alzheimer Society’s Minds in Motion program. She realized that no one program is sufficient to meet the preferences and needs of a diversity of people living with dementia. “Our goal for the Dementia-Inclusive Choices for Exercise project is to make more community and clinical exercise programs accessible and inclusive. That way, people living with dementia can choose a program that is close to them and aligned with their needs, goals and preferences for exercise programming.”

DICE provides training modules that educate and train exercise providers to understand and meet the physical activity needs of people living with dementia. This includes education about the rights of people living with dementia to inclusion in exercise and physical activity programs, the benefits of physical activity, physical activity recommendations, approaches to communication, exercise program delivery and planning, as well as facility design and the diversity of dementia (such as age of onset, abilities and challenges).

“The most profound change for exercise providers is the realization that their actions affect the ability of people living with dementia to participate,” Middleton says. “People often think that participation is only based on the abilities of the person living with dementia. This isn’t true!”

She says small things – from altering the environment (by reducing noise, using clear signage and removing mats or carpets, for example), to tweaking exercise delivery through simple, clear communication or altering how providers demonstrate, give feedback or pay attention to their clients – can enable people living with dementia to participate in their communities.

“In the end, people living with dementia have a right to benefit from health care and rehabilitation through exercise and to participate in sports, recreational and other leisure activities in their communities. This is a right supported by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disability.”

To access the training modules and videos, please see Dementia-Inclusive Choices for Exercise.

Postdoc Awareness Week continues and other notes

A message from Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs in support of National Postdoc Appreciation Week.

Today, as part of National Postdoc Appreciation Week, we are proud to showcase Xia Han and Tariq Aziz. Follow these links to their profiles if you want to learn more about them and the work they do.

Xia HanXia Han is a postdoc with the Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science in the Faculty of Mathematics. She joined the University of Waterloo in September 2020, and has been working with David Landriault and Ruodu Wang as supervisors. Her current research focuses on issues within the field of quantitative risk management.

Tariq Aziz.Tariq Aziz has been a postdoc in the Faculty of Science since 2018. He works in the Ecohydrology Research Group, developing methods and tools to better inform policy-makers of the benefits of using natural resources sustainably. His work is motivated by a desire to improve water quality and enhance public support for important sustainability initiatives.

Are you also a postdoc doing important work here at the University of Waterloo? If so, please Share Your Story with us so that we can add you to our collection of People Profiles celebrating the contributions of other amazing postdocs in the UWaterloo community.

Postdoc fact of the day: Postdoc population growth

University of Waterloo is home to nearly 400 postdoctoral fellows and has seen a 33% increase in the number of postdocs since 2016. Over half (56 per cent) of all our postdocs are international. We are proud to welcome such an incredibly diverse group of exceptional scholars.

Speaking of awareness, here are some other bits of campus info:

The University of Waterloo Place (UWP) southeast parking lot (accessible off Seagram Drive) will be closed from Friday, September 24 until Monday, September 27, according to Plant Operations.

The members of the Full House Brass and their instruments.The latest in the Noon Hour Concert series, Pandemic Polka, is set for Wednesday, September 22 at 12:30 p.m. online and will feature the Full House Brass. Full House Brass consists of five versatile and creative brass players: two trumpets, one French horn, and two trombones. This concert will feature arrangements of dance music, including waltzes, tangos, polkas, a soft shoe, and more.  

Upcoming office closure

Campus Wellness will be closed on Thursday, September 23 from 8:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. for staff training.

Link of the day

World Alzheimer's 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 (CCA) will be expanding some in-person services for fall 2021. The Tatham Centre will be open with front-desk support beginning September 7, with limited in-person appointments and co-op consults beginning September 20. All services will continue to be offered virtually this term. Book an appointment online or visit our Live Chat to connect with our Client Support Team. The CCA is here to help.

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.

While the Library continues to focus on digital resources and consultations, our spaces are open for the fall term. Dana Porter Library is open Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Davis Centre Library is open Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 11 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. for drop-in individual study space, bookable individual study rooms, drop-in access to computers and printers, book pick-up services and IST Help Desk support. Special Collections & Archives and the Geospatial Centre will be accessible by appointment. Library staff are available for questions via Ask us. Full details on current services and hours are available on the Library’s COVID-19 Update webpage

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: svpro@uwaterloo.ca 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 https://wusa.ca/peersupport to book an appointment either in person or online for the Fall term!

Food Support Service food hampers are currently available from the Turnkey Desk 24/7 in the Student Life Centre. Drop off locations are also open again in SLC, DC, DP, SCH and all residences.

Co-op Connection all available online. Check https://wusa.ca for more details.

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 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)

Warrior Rec Registration. Starts September 7. A wide range of programs are being offered this term. Intramural deadline: September 13, 11:00 a.m. Instructional deadline: September 19, 11:59 p.m. Register online.

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 blood.ca account already. Questions? Contact WarriorsInfo@uwaterloo.ca.

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.

Anti-racism book clubWhite Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism by Robin DiAngelo and Michael Eric Dyson (2018), Tuesday, September 21, 12:00 noon to 1:00 p.m.

NEW - Virtual Tour of Mohawk Institute Residential School, Tuesday, September 21, 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

GEDI Exchange Webinar - A 30 Minute Exchange with HueX and Tim Hortons, Tuesday, September 21, 1:00 p.m. Join this discussion with HueX and Tim Hortons as they discuss improving the customer experience with technology by bringing voice-enabled conversational AI to the drive-through.

WaterTalk: What are the Priority Research Needs for Environmental Quality and Environmental Public Health Practice? presented by Bryan Brooks, Thursday, September 23, 10:00 a.m.

Maawanji-idiwag (They come together): Institutional Approaches to Decolonizing Curricula, Thursday, September 23, 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

NEW - Truth, Reconciliation and You, Thursday, September 23, 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Alumni Black and Gold Day at home, Friday, September 24 and Saturday, September 25. Various events including a virtual concert, panel event, trivia, and more.

NEW - Alumni Black and Gold Day Women’s Rugby vs. Trent. Saturday, September 25, 2:00 p.m. Reserve your free tickets in advance and come cheer on your Warriors at Warrior Field.

Humans and Interconnectivity, Friday, September 24, 12:00 noon to 1:30 p.m.

NEW - Information session for Waterloo faculty and staff: NSERC Alliance and Ontario Centre of Innovation (OCI) Voucher for Innovation and Productivity (VIP) Joint Program, Tuesday, September 28, 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Please register.

NEW - Understanding Islamophobia: Root causes, Impact and Action, 2-Part Workshop, Wednesday, September 29 and October 6, 10:00 a.m. 12 noon.

NEW - Noon Hour Concert: Fire and Rain, Wednesday, September 29 at 12:30 p.m. online.

Waterloo Womxn + Nonbinary Wednesdays (W3+) presents Invisible Stories, Sound(Mapping) Inequality, and Responsible NEW - Representation with panelists Lai-Tze Fan, Jessica Thompson, and Jin Sol Kim, Wednesday, September 29, 12 noon to 1:00 p.m. MS Teams.