Tag Archives: University of Waterloo

CKMS News -2024-05-26- Support grows for “Gaza House” solidarity encampment at UWaterloo

CKMSNews-2024-05-26-CKMS News -2024-05-26- Support grows for “Gaza House” solidarity encampment at UWaterloo

by: dan kellar

Waterloo – The Gaza House solidarity encampment at the University of Waterloo continues to gather support while negotiations with the school’s administration have stalled. 

First, a letter of support from faculty, staff, and librarians from UW and Wilfrid Laurier University. Secondly, a statement of solidarity from the chairman of PSAC 902 which represents graduate students and teaching assistants at WLU. Then on May 25th Gaza House hosted a rally which brought out over two hundred supporters.

This show features Sarah, a student member of the encampment’s negotiating team. Sarah has requested partial anonymity due to safety concerns. CKMS News also spoke with Law Professor Irina Ceric about students’ protest rights and reactions to encampments from administration at different universities. 

CKMS News requested comment from UW administration and was told no one was available but that they “will look to see what we can do later this week”. The University has not responded to further communication.

CKMS News -2024-05-14- Gaza solidarity encampment launched at the University of Waterloo

CKMS News -2024-05-14- Gaza Solidarity Encampment Launched At the University of Waterloo

by: dan kellar

Waterloo – Dozens of people converged at the University of Waterloo’s main campus on Monday morning to launch a Gaza solidarity encampment. The group’s “OccupyUWaterloo” Instagram page calls the encampment “Gaza House”

The group says the university is complicit in the current siege on Palestinians by the Israeli military, which has resulted in over 35,000 people dead, tens of thousands more injured or missing, and the majority destruction of Gazan infrastructure, including all universities and hospitals. The group is calling for divestment from weapons manufacturers and institutions which support the occupation of Palestine, and “an end to UW’s financial and academic ties to the genocidal and apartheid state of Israel.”

These demands share similarities from the demands from encampments set up at over a dozen other universities in Canada.

This show features an interview with Gaza House encampment spokesperson Nick Joseph. Also included is the statement UW provided, and Waterloo mayor Dorothy McCabe reacting to the encampment.


CKMS News – 2024-03-17- FIRST Robotics Competition Bringing Over 1000 Youth To UW For Provincial Qualifier

2024-03-17- FIRST Robotics Competition Brining Over 1000 Youth To UW For Provincial Qualifier

Waterloo- On March 22nd and 23rd, youth-led teams from South Western Ontario will descend on the University of Waterloo to compete in the Waterloo district FIRST Robotics Competition (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), a qualifying event for the provincial competition in April.

This year, 8 regional teams will join 32 other school and community teams entering their robots in competition with and against each other through a round-robin style tournament.  

This show features an interview with Professor Maud Gorbet, director of the Biomedical Engineering Program at the University of Waterloo, a long-term volunteer and member of the steering committee with Waterloo-Wellington FIRST, and a mentor on the KW based robotics team: the 2702 Rebels.  She discusses the competition, the importance of applied STEM education, and efforts to address the underrepresentation of women and non-binary folks, as well as Indigenous, Black and other racialized populations in STEM disciplines.

CKMS News – 2024-01-05 – Council approves University of Waterloo plan to partially transform a parking lot into a 12 story student residence.

CKMS News – 2024-01-05 – Waterloo Council approves University of Waterloo plan to partially transform a parking lot into a 12 story student residence

by: dan kellar

In Waterloo’s final open city council session of 2023, site-specific by-law and zoning changes were approved to allow a new residence at the University of Waterloo. The 510 bed, twelve-story building will be constructed on the northern section of the parking lot that sits between University Ave, Seagram Drive, and the Spur Line Trail.  

First announced by the university in September of 2023, the new residence is now a collaboration with architect Diamond and Schmitt and will mainly house first year students. The University of Waterloo guarantees housing for all first year students, however, most upper-year students must compete for housing off-campus.

This show features audio from the December 11th meeting where staff presented the project, the architect spoke alongside representatives from the University of Waterloo and consultant GSP group,  and delegates proposed even more car parking lots being transformed into human living spaces.  Councilors voted unanimously for the motion.

Cambridge MP leads the right-to-repair revolution

On October 18 of this year, the House of Commons unanimously passed the right to repair amendment under the Copyright Act (Bill C-244). The bill, originally tabled by Cambridge MP Bryan May, will allow the circumvention of a technological protection measure (TMP) so long as it is for diagnosis, maintenance, or repair purposes.

TPMs are meant to protect proprietary information or software, but they also inhibit an individual’s right and ability to repair any device that they own, and so often devices end up in landfills. Waste diversion concerns are among the key reasons for this amendment, as is the expense that repair places on people.

Murray Zink is the founder of 4RepairKW and the UW Repair Hub and has been promoting repair for many years. CKMS News talked to both Bryan May and Murray Zink.



CKMS News – CAFKA’s 22nd biennale festival invites people to reflect and come together after challenges of COVID

Listen: CKMS News – 2023-07-20 – CAFKA

By: MP Holmes

The theme of this year’s CAFKA (Contemporary Art Forum Kitchener and Area) festival is ‘Stay with Me’.  Tara Cooper, CAFKA’s Chair of Programming and Board Director, explained,

“In a way, it came out of our last biennale, which was during the pandemic two years ago. And the idea was literally just to stay with me, the idea of being together but also the idea of giving room for the things that are uncomfortable or hard to talk about.”

Tara also talks about the history, some of this year’s unique artworks within the exhibition, and what it takes to produce the exhibition. 

CKMS news also talked to the Director of Cultural Services at the Region of Waterloo Helen Chimirri-Russell about how the Region approaches funding arts organizations, such as CAFKA.

CAFKA runs until Saturday July 22, 2023, and you can find information on exhibits and shows at CAFKA.org.

On Friday, July 21, 6:00–7:30 pm, join CAFKA for a walking tour of Stay with Me installations in the Kitchener exhibition zone. Admission is free. Meet in front of Kitchener City Hall (200 King Street West, Kitchener) at 6pm. 


The music on today’s show is called “Maple Music” by Godmode courtesy of by Expectantly Maple Music on YouTube. This music is copyright free and used with gratitude. 

Check out the archived versions of  this program on radiowaterloo.ca/news

If you want to get in touch with comments, or ideas about stories to cover, email us at news@radiowaterloo.ca

CKMS News – 2023-07-02 – Community Grieves after Three People Stabbed at the University of Waterloo

Listen: 2023-07-02 – Campus grieves for stabbing victims

By: M.P. Holmes

Twenty four hours after three people were stabbed in a classroom, the University of Waterloo and the wider community came together in two separate rallies to show solidarity and support . University President Vivek Goel and the Dean of Arts Sheila Ager offered support and encouraged those impacted by the event to seek counseling and focus on healing by taking a step back from work or studies if they felt the need to do so.

After the University’s gathering, another rally, organised at by students and community members, began at Hagey Hall. This gathering gave people an additional opportunity to speak on what happened, show support, and consider where to go from here.

Around 4pm on June 28th, Geovanny Villalba-Aleman, A 24-year-old former international student has been charged in the stabbings . Villalba-Aleman is charged with three counts of aggravated assault, four accounts of assault with a weapon, possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose, and mischief under $5,000.

Community members have been vocal and quick to point out the lack of any notification from the WatSafe app, an app developed by the UW and intended to, among other things, inform community members about major campus emergencies.

This show features a variety of voices from those attending the events.

A crowd of folks with signs at the gathering in response the stabbings at UW. The signs read "All genders deserve safety", "Protect Trans Kids", "CIS is Not a Slur", "No More Shit", "We Deserve to feel safe", "misogyny is an Epidemic", "UC and UW Against Hate", and "This is why we need PRIDE".
After the University’s gathering, another rally began at Hagey Hall, which gave people an additional opportunity to speak on what happened, show support and consider where to go from here.
Photo: M.P. Holmes

The music on this show is called “Documentary Intro” by MUSIC4VIDEO courtesy of the Music for Video Library on YouTube.

This program is a part of the “Local Journalism Initiative” and is funded by the Community Radio Fund of Canada, Heritage Canada, and the CKMS Newsroom.

Check out the archived versions of this program on radiowaterloo.ca/news, and listen to all the LJI content at canada-info.ca.

If you want to get in touch with comments, or ideas about stories to cover, email us at news@radiowaterloo.ca

CKMS News – 2021-01-28 – On the road to unionization for academic workers at the University of Waterloo

Host: Shalaka Jadhav

One of many ongoing and underlying issues that the pandemic has brought attention to includes workers rights, safety, and wages. Across various workplaces, the importance of unions in giving workers a collective voice in the workplace has amplified, and this extends to the students at an institution we may not often think of: the University of Waterloo, and its student workers.

In this segment, I’ll be in conversation with Lynne Sargent and Nicolay Videnov, students who are part of the Committee to Organize uWaterloo, a grassroots campaign to unionize the academic workers at the University of Waterloo.  Their interviews are complimented by Graham Cox, a researcher and organizer at the Canadian Union of Public Employees, referred to as CUPE during this show.  With over 700,000 members, CUPE is Canada’s largest union. CUPE represents 70,400 workers spanning 233 collective agreements in the post-secondary education sector.

To learn more about Organize uWaterloo, check out organizeuw.org.

This program is a part of the “Local Journalism Initiative” grant program and is funded by the Community Radio Fund of Canada, the Government of Canada, and the CKMS Newsroom.

Check out the archived versions of  this program and other episodes on radiowaterloo.ca/news., and other stories commissioned under the Local Journalism Initiative at canada-info.ca.

You can  follow us on twitter @RadioWaterloo. If you want to get in touch with comments, or ideas about stories to cover, email us at news@radiowaterloo.ca.

Music for this episode was courtesy of Dylan Prowse.

Anna Kuepfer, Jen Wilson & Jolene Knott

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Started in 2018 by Anna Kuepfer, Abigail Loewen and Leah Wouda , SheCycle aims to end the cycle of poverty for women in Uganda with a focus on menstrual hygiene. SheCycle is creating an antimicrobial and reusable menstrual pad that is environmentally friendly, creates employment and has a sustainable business model. In 2019 the trio from University of Waterloo SheCycle project took the top prize of $30,000 in the World’s Challenge Challenge beating 17 other universities from 9 countries at an international competition where students pitch their ideas to address a global issue.

Lipoffkw is KW’s only lip-sync battle fundraiser. The team is entirely volunteer and made up of 4 local women Tiffany Iden, Jen Wilson, Jolene Knott, and Rebecca Petricevic who organize the most fun fundraiser. They have raised almost $10,000 for local charities and each year, they choose a different benefiting cause. In the past funds were raised for St. Mary’s General Hospital Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence Treatment Centre, St Mary’s General Hospital , YWCA KW, Homelessness Housing Umbrella Group and this year they are supporting ALL IN 2020. They strongly believe, together as a community we can end homelessness in Waterloo Region.

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Maria Almhana & Mac-Anne – In Conversation with Rashmi

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Maria Almhana, arrived in Canada in November 2017 from Syria. She was confused, depressed, was not sure what to do. In January 2018 she applied to get “the 100 Syrian Women, 10,000 Syrian Lives Scholarship” from Jusoor organisation which had partnership with student-funded humanitarian initiative, International Student Overcoming War(ISOW), at Wilfrid Laurier University.
As the Syrian conflict escalated, she maintained hope and began to apply her education and skills toward those who were increasingly vulnerable. Currently, she is among 13 students coming from conflict zones at WLU who get the support from ISO. She is currently pursuing her Master’s in International Public Policy at Balsillie School of International Affairs.
She shared her story is of losses and some wins as a young Syrian in a time of war. Her experiences before arriving in Canada from Syria is something that her new friends in Canada may never understand. Even as she settles in this place of peace, with its quiet nights, its houses and streets intact, in her mind, she is building a bridge back to her home.

Mac-Anne loves her country and is so proud of her culture and the religious freedom, my next guest comes all the way from Ghana. Mac-Anne , her friends call her Mac, is an International student from Ghana, who completed her undergraduate studies in Civil Engineering at Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Ghana. Mac is in her final semester of her Masters Program in Civil Engineering at University of Waterloo, she is focused on structures and construction and is also a climate change activist. I sit down with Mac-Anne as we talked about her experiences here in Canada. What it is like as an International student to adjust to life here. What life is like back in Ghana, food, culture and so much more.

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