News briefs: Sept. 16, 2009

WLUSU selects firm for market research

A joint proposal between two firms has been accepted by the Wilfrid Laurier University Student’s Union, furthering the stages of WLUSU’s market research initiative, which was approved at the summers operating budget meeting.

The two companies who submitted the proposal are Response Generator and Insights.

According to Joel Robinson, vice-president of public affairs for WLUSU, Response Generator will look after the marketing and research side, while Insights will take care of the data and developing the questions to be answered by students.

This proposal was one of nine submitted to WLUSU, and was chosen based on the collaborations of a steering committee that consisted of Robinson, marketing and communications manager Phil Champagne, chair of the board Saad Aslam and directors Jackie Dobson and Michael Onabolu.

The next step will include sitting down with the firms on Sept. 24th. WLUSU is now looking for input from students, faculty and staff as to what questions they would like to see answered in the research.

Staff association joins provincial association

On Sept. 3, the Wilfrid Laurier University Staff Association (WLUSA) voted 83 per cent in favour of joining the Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation (OSSTF), a trade union representing members in school boards and universities across the province.

“We’re now part of a larger union with 60,000 members,” said WLUSA president Keith Goulet.

Goulet noted that WLUSA will receive resources and information from OSSTF, which will be particularly beneficial for the union when their collective agreement with the university ends in June 2011.

“Bargaining is the biggest benefit,” said Goulet.

WLUFA will join OSSTF for a trial period of approximately two years and they will not pay dues for one year.

“It’s like a holiday from dues,” said Goulet.

Other staff associations that belong to OSSTF include the University of Ottawa and Brock University.

Laurier receives anonymous $2.5-million donation

An anonymous $2.5-million donation by an alumnus was made to Wilfrid Laurier University on September 11, 2009.

It is the largest donation ever to the school and will be used to create a research chair in the environmental geography department.

It will be known as the Dr. John McMurry Research Chair in Environmental Geography after the former Laurier professor and department head.

The first faculty member to hold the position will be professor Scott Slocombe, a Laurier faculty member since 1989.

See full story at thecord.ca

New appointment for WLU dean of arts

Mary-Louise Byrne, former chair of geography and environmental studies, will be stepping into the role of acting dean of arts until June 30, 2010.

Former dean of arts David Docherty will be leaving his post to pursue the position of senior advisor: multi-campus initiatives for a three-year term.

Byrne took over the position on Sept. 1. The search for a new dean of arts is a long process and will take place throughout the current academic year, with appointment scheduled for July 1, 2010.

Best Lecturer competiton

The competition, sponsored by TD Insurance, allows anyone to nominate their favourite professor in any Ontario post-secondary institution.

1o finalists will be selected, and the winner’s school will recieve a $10,000 scholarship.

Submissions should be made by Oct. 12th to bl@tvo.org.

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