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About Mathematics

Dean's Message - April 2017

This past month has brought a disproportionate amount of sad news. We learned of the death of former Math Undergrad Office staff member Rachel Hull on March 11, Computer Science faculty member Alex López-Ortiz on March 12, then the loss of a student to suicide on March 20. This last tragedy has led to many important conversations about student well-being and mental health across the University. President Hamdullahpur described the next steps in his message “A community committed to action on mental health”, including upcoming opportunities to share ideas on helping students find the services and supports they need.

In more welcome news, I’m pleased to congratulate these colleagues: 

  • Chris Bauch and Marek Stastna in Applied Math, on their research funding from the John R. Evans Leaders Fund (JELF) by the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI)
  • Raouf Boutaba, in Computer Science, distinguished with an INRIA International Chair for the period 2017-2021
  • Lap Chi Lau in Computer Science, recognized with the Outstanding Young Computer Science Researcher Award by CS-Can/Info-Can
  • Xinzhi Liu in Applied Math, on the publication of his book on disease modelling
  • David McKinnon in Pure Math, winner of a 2017 University of Waterloo Distinguished Teacher Award

 and students

  • Bernoulli trials contest winners Daniel Spivak, Shouzhen Gu, Taras Kolomatski and Zhengyu Gu (and thanks to their coach, Stephen New)
  • Rotman International Trading Competition Waterloo team members Jimmy Fang, Jessie Guo, Boyang Li, Hanson Li, Alex Wang and Charles Zhao who placed fourth overall, first in the credit risk case and third in the algorithmic trading case.

As we enter the fourth month of this special 50th anniversary year for the Faculty of Mathematics, it’s wonderful to see more celebrations taking shape. I invite you to mark your calendars for the next Faculty-wide event, the William Tutte Way naming celebration on May 12. This occasion marks the 100th anniversary of Prof. Tutte’s birth, and will recognize the contributions of this founding faculty member andWorld War II hero.

Prof. Tutte’s home department, Combinatorics and Optimization, has organized a Distinguished Lecture Series to commemorate this anniversary year. Friday afternoons from May to August, visiting scholars from institutions in six countries will give talks in one of the Department’s core research areas.

The Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science will host a 50th anniversary conference in July. It features plenary talks by internationally recognized speakers with connections to the Department, along with a session on the history of statistics and actuarial science at Waterloo and across Canada. 

Finally, I am very pleased to welcome Martha Foulds to the Faculty of Mathematics as our new Director of Planning. Martha previously filled a similar role in the Faculty of Engineering.

Stephen M. Watt

Dean, Faculty of Mathematics

University of Waterloo

Stephen Watt