Dean's Update - October 2020


Lili LiuDear colleagues,

A signature commitment of our Faculty’s strategic plan was to “explore a name change to the Faculty of Health to be more visible to external partners and other stakeholders, such as prospective students.” Our proposed Faculty name change was approved at Senate on September 21, and unanimously at the Board of Governors this week on October 27. I would like to thank each of you, as well as our alumni, campus colleagues, and our largest stakeholder – undergraduate students – for suggestions, feedback and guidance throughout the consultation process.
I appreciate that a name change is a rare opportunity – indeed, our Faculty has thrived and grown with the name “Applied Health Sciences” for the past 30 years. While we built a community around the AHS acronym and love it, we also saw that externally, there was confusion about what we represented as a Faculty. Rebranding as the Faculty of Health allows others to easily understand what we study and aim to achieve – which is a healthier world in all its dimensions.
The timing of our new name coincides with the University of Waterloo’s strategic plan, which has as a commitment to “lead globally nationally at the interface of society, health and technology.” In our consultation with other Faculties, we learned about untapped potential for the campus to collaborate on health initiatives in undergraduate and graduate education, in research, and in strategies to enhance the health and well-being of our community.
The Faculty of Applied Health Sciences (AHS) will become the Faculty of Health effective January 1, 2021, with a full transition to the new name in place in September 2021. Practically speaking, we will begin transitioning letterhead, email signatures and websites at the beginning of the new year, with social media and signage to follow. Current students will begin to see the new branding, but because we are already in the recruitment cycle, prospective students will still be applying to AHS ("soon to be Faculty of Health"). Calendars will be updated by fall 2021. We'll keep you abreast of these changes and release new logos in the new year.

All the best,
Lili Liu

AHS this monthEvents I Tips and reminders


Inaugural AMTD postdoc joins Faculty

Kemi AmoduOluwakemi (Kemi) Amodu is one of four University-wide inaugural recipients of a $75,000 AMTD Waterloo Global Talent Postdoctoral Fellowship, She will be joining the School of Public Health and Health Systems, with Craig Janes as her supervisor. Her research will test the effectiveness of education and treatment services for sexually transmitted infection prevention among women displaced by terrorism in Nigeria. These fellowships were made possible by a donation from the AMTD Foundation, led by Waterloo alumnus Calvin Choi (BA ’01).

Two Schlegel Research Chairs renewed

Heather KellerGeorge HeckmanHeather Keller (Kinesiology) and George Heckman (School of Public Health and Health Systems) have been renewed as Schlegel Research Chairs at the Research Institute for Aging (RIA). Keller is Chair of Nutrition and Aging, and Heckman is Chair of Geriatric Medicine. Keller began her appointment in 2012, and is renewed until 2026. Heckman began his in 2010 and is renewed until 2024.

Master's graduate awarded Alumni Gold Medal

Eric HedgeEric Hedge, a Kinesiology Master of Science student who graduated this fall, was this year's master's recipient of the Alumni Gold Medal for exceptional academic performance. Only one master's student receives this award each year. He is continuing with a PhD at Waterloo, with Richard Hughson as his supervisor.


Please note that all in-person events have been cancelled or postponed until further notice.

Take Our Kids to Work Day: November 4

Do you have a child in grade 9? Join us for this year’s virtual Take Our Kids to Work Day, featuring a look at a variety of workplaces and interactive panels from employees and students. Please register for Take Our Kids to Work by October 30 (today!).

Thrive with AHS Trivia: November 5

Question marks graphicAHS faculty, staff and students are invited to join in for AHS Trivia Night, taking place next week as part of Thrive Week. Sign up as an individual or with a team to flex your trivia muscles and reconnect with our community on Thursday, November 5, from 7-8:45 p.m. Please register for AHS Trivia Night before November 3 at noon.

Waterloo Virtual Open House: November 7

Waterloo Virtual Open House, which is aimed at prospective students who are interested in the University, is coming up on Saturday, November 7. Thank you to all the faculty, staff, and students volunteering for the event!

Shift: Neutral Energy Town Hall: November 10

 Neutral publicationRepresentatives from the Climate and Energy Working Group encourage the AHS community to join in a town hall to launch the Shift Neutral climate action plan. The event hopes to build awareness and support for the University's first institutional climate action plan, and it will take place on Microsoft Teams on November 10, from 1:30-3 p.m.

Writing for The Conversation: November 16

Scott White, editor-in-chief of The Conversation Canada, will discuss how academics can become authors for the publishing platform, and demonstrate the analytics dashboard that is built into an author's profile. Open to academics and researchers, including PhD students under an academic’s supervision. The session takes place from 10:30 a.m. to noon. Please register by emailing Pamela in media relations at

Humans and... Health: November 19

You’re invited to join the Humans and… Health online event, in which faculty and alumni from diverse perspectives on health care can help us understand where we are and where we should be. Panelists include AHS alumnus Nel Wieman, Acting Deputy Chief Medical Officer at First Nations Health Authority. Please register for Humans and.. Health here.

Kinesiology Lab Days: November 23-December 18

Two students using CP03 Max machineKinesiology Lab Days, a popular outreach event for high school students, is going virtual this year. Teachers can sign up to deliver up to three labs to their students, either in-class or online, and there are no limits to how many students can participate.


Relive Fall Convocation...

Live celebration graphic... Or if you'd like to see what the Fall Convocation live celebration was like, please visit the Applied Health Sciences Convocation page. You will also find an address by valedictorian Kanishk Goomer (Kinesiology), stories about some of our outstanding graduates and more.

Last chance to set up two-factor authorization

Duo logoRegister for two-factor authentication by November 17 so you can continue to seamlessly access UWaterloo systems such as Office 365, Workday, LEARN and Quest. Please ensure that you are set up in advance to avoid frustration on November 17 and later.

Do you have a news item to share? Please email it to Eugenia Xenos Anderson.