Dean's update - January 2016

Dear Colleagues,

Happy New Year! While the holidays probably feel like a distant memory by now, I hope you were able to enjoy some well-deserved rest and relaxation over the break. I am certainly feeling a renewed sense of purpose, and am looking forward to an exciting and busy year in the Faculty.

A few news and information items I wanted to share:

  • The boardroom table in B.C. Matthews Hall (BMH) 3119 is moving to Needles Hall. As you may be aware, this table is the University’s original Board of Governors table. It spent many years in the Engineering II building where the Board and Senate met during the University’s early days. After serving its original function, it was decommissioned and sent to storage for a number of years— until former AHS dean Ron Marteniuk requested it to be brought out for use in the Faculty in the mid-1980s. It has been stewarded by Applied Health Sciences (AHS) for these past 30 years. Given the historical significance of the table, the University, through the Secretariat, has requested that the table be moved to the newly constructed University boardroom in the Needles Hall addition. Here it will take its place amongst other significant objects and symbols of the University’s founding and history that are being brought together. The Faculty has been fortunate to house this unique piece of history for over 30 years, and its time in AHS will be reflected in a new plaque affixed to the table. The Secretariat will provide the resources for AHS to replace the table with one of similar grandeur (minus the history) for our boardroom. Exact timelines on these activities to be determined.
  • The next AHS HeForShe Workgroup meeting will take place on February 4th from 2 to 3:30 p.m. in BMH 3119. Please consider attending to support this important initiative within our Faculty.  For further information, please see the January 22 email from Corey Johnson. 
  • A reminder on behalf of the AHS Joint Health and Safety Committee: All employees, both new and existing, need to complete the WHMIS 2015 training course. The course is available through LEARN, and takes approximately 45 to 60 minutes to complete. Please have all training finished by Feb 22, 2016 so that we can file our annual safety report including our safety training record for AHS. Once you have completed the training, please log in to HR and send a screenshot of your training summary to Julie Cassaubon.
  • A few personnel changes to note:
    • Pamela Hurvid, the Faculty’s Undergraduate Recruitment Co-ordinator, has returned from a secondment in Math. Ben Norris, who filled the role in her absence, will resume his position as the Undergraduate Program Assistant in Kinesiology.
    • Chris Vigna and Danny Pincivero both started positions as lecturers in Kinesiology on January 1.
  • Yesterday, in recognition of Alzheimer’s Awareness Month, MAREP held a public lecture and panel discussion on the power of music to improve dementia. Held at Federation Hall, the event was attended by 110 community members and included the presentation of the Kenneth Murray Partnership in Dementia Award to Maggie and Mark Weidmark, and Al and Penny Stager.
  • Earlier in the month, we welcomed 23 AHS alumni back to BMH to participate in our annual Speed Networking night. The event was a tremendous success, with over 120 students in attendance. I would like to thank all the staff who made this wonderful event possible.

Alumna speaking to students at Speed Networking.Jennifer Horndi, Facility Supervisor at Woolwich Memorial Centre/Woolwich Township Arena, speaks to students at the AHS Speed Networking event. Visit flickr to see all the pictures from the event.

  • Construction on the expansion building continues on schedule. All interior stairs have been installed, and plumbing, HVAC, sprinkler and electrical rough-ins continue on all floors. Interior stud walls are complete from the first to the third floor, with drywall now being installed on the third floor. This week, contractors will begin to pour the lecture hall ramps, bringing us one step closer to opening doors to students in September 2016.

Drywalled room in new expansion building.Drywall progress on the third floor

Mold of lecture hall ramp awaiting concrete.The lecture hall ramp to be poured this week.

In addition to all of the individual and collective activities associated with research and academic programming that we are all engaged in as our core functions, a number of important processes continue to unfold over the coming weeks and months. Among these, all three academic units are engaged in faculty searches, looking to bring new outstanding individuals into the AHS community.   

Jim Rush.Wishing you all a wonderful month ahead,


James W.E. Rush, PhD
Professor and Dean 
Faculty of Applied Health Sciences