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Distinguished alumni among recipients of honorary doctorates at Waterloo's convocation

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

A Waterloo alumna considered one of the leading architects of her generation and an alumnus who is a major international figure in leading soft matter physics research will be among the distinguished recipients of honorary doctorates at the University of Waterloo's upcoming spring convocation ceremonies next week.

Alison Brooks is founder, principal and creative director of Alison Brooks Architects. She has designed some of the most original and important buildings in the United Kingdom, and is the only architect in Britain to have won all three of the country's most prestigious awards for architecture. In 2014, she was named to the Times of London/Debrett list of the 500 most influential people in the U.K. Brooks will receive an Honorary Doctor of Engineering degree and address convocation at the Faculty of Engineering ceremony taking place on Saturday, June 18 at 10 a.m.

David A. Weitz is Mallinckrodt Professor of Physics and Applied Physics and director of the Materials Research Science and Engineering Center at Harvard University. He is a major international figure in leading soft matter physics research, and his group studies both synthetic and biological materials, with interests ranging from fundamental physics to technological applications, and from basic materials questions to specific biological problems. He will receive an Honorary Doctor of Science degree and address convocation at the Faculty of Science ceremony on Thursday, June 16 at 10 a.m.

The University will award the other honorary doctorates at the following ceremonies:

ENVIRONMENT — Tuesday, June 14, 2016 at 2:30 p.m.

Ming-ko Woo, professor emeritus in the School of Geography and Environmental and Earth Sciences at McMaster University, has made outstanding contributions to the field of hydrology. He pioneered the field of cold-regions hydrology in Canada, and is a recipient of the Tuzo Wilson Medal, the highest honour conferred by the Canadian Geophysical Union. He will receive an Honorary Doctor of Environmental Studies degree and address convocation.

ARTS — Wednesday, June 15, 2016 at 10 a.m.

Patricia O’Malley is a prominent member of the Canadian accounting profession and has had a significant influence over its development and financial regulation in Canada. She is a leader in the development of international financial reporting standards. O’Malley is part of a small, select group of women in the profession who broke down barriers and achieved the highest levels of success. She is a strong advocate for permanently dismantling gender barriers in the accounting profession and has mentored many women who followed her path. She will receive an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree and address convocation.

ARTS — Wednesday, June 15, 2016 at 2:30 p.m.

Alex Neve serves as the secretary general of Amnesty International Canada and has had a long and distinguished career as an advocate of human rights. He spearheaded numerous initiatives aimed at advancing human rights in areas related to Canadian anti-terrorism and refugee policies, including pressuring the Canadian government into opening a public inquiry into its involvement in Maher Arar's rendition and treatment abroad. Neve has also worked to remedy the ongoing problem of widespread violence against indigenous women in Canada. He will receive an Honorary Doctor of Laws and address convocation.

SCIENCE — Thursday, June 16, 2016 at 2:30 p.m.

Alan Tomlinson is research professor and was professor and head of the School of Health and Life Sciences at Glasgow Caledonian University, as well as serving as director of the Centre for Vision in Health. His work has brought major improvements in contact lenses for patients with astigmatism, as well as in understanding the impacts of reduced oxygen on corneal health. Tomlinson is one of the longest-standing members of the International Society for Contact Lens Researchers, which consists of only the top 100 researchers in the field of contact lenses in the world. He will receive an Honorary Doctor of Science degree.

MATHEMATICS — Friday, June 17, 2016 at 10 a.m.

Barry Mazur is the Gerhard Gade University Professor in the Department of Mathematics at Harvard University. He is one of the most influential mathematicians, and is considered a world-leading expert in number theory. In addition to his significant accomplishments, he displays a unique ability to engage biologists, economists, physicists and others to trace the ways in which mathematics is integral to the structure of knowledge in their disciplines. In 2013, U.S. President Barack Obama awarded him the National Medal of Science, the United States' highest recognition for scientists and mathematicians. He will receive an Honorary Doctor of Mathematics degree and address convocation.

ENGINEERING — Saturday, June 18, 2016 at 2:30 p.m.

S. Shankar Sastry is dean and Roy W. Carlson Professor of Engineering at University of California, Berkeley where he holds appointments in the electrical engineering and computer science departments, as well as the department of mechanical engineering. Sastry has made contributions to a broad range of high-impact application areas spanning robotics, embedded and autonomous software, machine learning and vision, virtual surgery, hybrid systems control, and more. Widely considered a technology visionary, he has led development of large-scale projects that have directly shaped his nation's cybersecurity and network infrastructure research agenda. He will receive an Honorary Doctor of Engineering degree and address convocation.

All ceremonies take place in the Physical Activities Complex (PAC) on the Waterloo campus.  For more information, please visit the website for spring convocation 2016.

Members of the media are required to confirm their attendance with the media contact below.

About the University of Waterloo

University of Waterloo is Canada’s top innovation university. With more than 36,000 students we are home to the world's largest co-operative education system of its kind. Our unmatched entrepreneurial culture, combined with an intensive focus on research, powers one of the top innovation hubs in the world. Find out more at uwaterloo.ca.

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Media Contact:

Pamela Smyth
University of Waterloo
519-888-4777
www.uwaterloo.ca/news
@uWaterlooNews

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