Talk:University of Waterloo/Archive 1

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Hey guys, for those who are from the university and damn proud of it, use the following UserBox. Thanks!

Waterloo crest.png This user has an affiliation with the University of Waterloo.

--AlphaTwo 21:29, 23 January 2006 (UTC)

Please, when leaving messages, always sign it properly by typing four tildes (~~~~) after your message. Thanks. -- Rediahs 01:32, 13 January 2006 (UTC)

The pages lists a couple of associated institutions but only mentions planning the Institute for Quantum Computing. Is that just old? Seems like it needs to be updated.

Mike Lazaridis - founder of Research in Motion

This should not be placed under Alumni and Faculty. Mike Lazaridis is neither alumni (he dropped out), or faculty (he was recently elected Chancellor).

  • Very technically he is; he received an honourary Doctor of Engineering degree from Waterloo in October 2000.
    • Part of the definition to an honorary degree is that the recipient has never attended the institution so it does not count.

I removed the following line from the facts section:

  • The Dana Porter Library is rumored to be slowly sinking due to errors made by the designers, who forgot to take into account the weight of the books

I heard this too while I was a student there and believed it, but found out later on that it is an urban legend common to many universities and colleges. There is even a article on it: TimothyPilgrim 16:02, Jul 14, 2004 (UTC)

there is a better page for stories about UW here: . I'll maybe add it to the references links later. RobSchmidt 21:10, 6 Mar 2005 (UTC)

I dewikified James Downey's name under Presidents because it links to the wrong guy. Kraigus 15:16, 7 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Same thing with David Johnston. Revived 21:28, 18 Dec 2004 (EST)

I have some issues with: "Students actually had to write in why they wanted to see Bill Gates, and the best responses were awarded tickets to see Gates live in person". If I'm not mistaken, the engineering faculity got so many responses that they had to choose who could attend by lottery. There should be a reference to this in the Imprint, the student run newspaper.

That was the Math faculty, not Engineering. Engineering had to explain why they deserved to attend, Math was asked to provide what they would ask Bill Gates if they were selected. Math received so many applications that they randomized the selection process. [[User::Recurrence|Recurrence]]

New content for history

I started writing a bit more detail about the history of our school... I didn't finish yet though so I am posting it here.

During a time of change for Ontario education, universities shifting from religious affiliations to government support, Gerry Hagey believed that Waterloo College had to extend its work into the sciences (later to be redefined as an engineering school). He was able to gather teachers of engineering and basic sciences, and also obtained an initial grant of $625,000 from the government.

In January 1958, Hagey and colleagues were able to purchase 237 acres of farmland in the area. Not soon after, construction began for the first academic building on the new site; which would be soon known as Engineering 1.

Through a series of delicate negotiations which turned into bitter hostilities, the "faculty of science and engineering" broke free from Waterloo College. In early 1959, the government established three universities: Waterloo Lutheran University, University of St. Jerome's College, and the University of Waterloo. Initially, St. Jerome's and Waterloo Lutheran were both expected to federate with the new UW, but in the end Waterloo Lutheran chose to remain independent. UW then quickly created a faculty of arts in order to gain respect as a university. In the same year, arts students joined the science and engineering students in the new campus.

The original plan was to put up one building a year. However, in 1966, seven buildings were opened. One of them, the Dana Porter Library--named after the politician and jurist who became UW's first chancellor--was initially a three floor building, then seven, then ten.

Three more church colleges ended up joining the university: Renison, Conrad Grebel, and St. Paul's. The first mathematics faculty in the world was created. And the first co-op programs outside of engineering was introduced. The co-op system then was revised in involving four-month terms rather than the initial three-month terms. In 1967, the College of Optometry of Ontario, at the moment an independent institution in Toronto, moved to Waterloo and became affiliated with the university. Then, a physical education program was created, which later became the faculty of applied health sciences. The faculty of environmental studies was created not soon after.

Strong programs in ... Science?

It seems someone or many are trying to add science to the list of strong programs. Is this just repeated POV vandalism or is someone trying to make an argument for science's inclusion? If you want science to be added and think you have a good reason, please state it here:

  • its not. the end.
  • From what I understand the biochemistry program is the foremost program of its type in Canada and we have the only Anglophone optometry school in Canada, making it the ideal choice for English-speaking future opticians.
  • not to mention the Institute for Quantum Computing (in which the Physics department is heavily involved), a field in which Waterloo truly is a world leader. IQC has made Waterloo well-known as much as any other initiative. Or the new Nanotechnology Engineering program, the only one of its kind in Canada, a joint initiative between ECE, ChemEng, and Chemistry. I can't speak to the quality of the undergraduate program but there is certainily top-notch research.
  • All POV
  • By suggesting that that is POV, then isn't the argument that UW is strong in CS/Eng all POV too? Besides the press/media/Companies suggesting that UW is strong in those area (which is POV), how can anything be "stated" as facts? --AlphaTwo
  • How about some concrete proof from statistics; i.e the amount of research and development from current faculty or alumni. The media/press is ALWAYS a POV. Just because UW has the largest COOP in the world, its engineering and computer science program became attractive. Either than that, it has NO history and is over-rated by UW die-hard ppl like you.
  • I'm not arguing for science as a strong point for UW , but I'm just offering a counterpoint. What statistical proof does anyone have to suggest that any program is strong? As an example:[1]. The psychology department ranks 2nd in Clinical Psychology in North America, but did anyone count it? Nope. Just because it's unknown, it doesn't make it less of a fact. --AlphaTwo 19:02, 13 January 2006 (UTC)
I find that it's hard to take the edits seriously, because oftentimes, math, computer science, or engineering is removed along with the addition - I've seen more than a few edits where computer science is replaced with science. If these people were really serious about adding science to the list, they would have started a discussion in talk. I feel they are more interested in vandalizing and trying to promote their favourite faculty. -- Rediahs 19:01, 14 January 2006 (UTC)
  • For the record, the issue has its way onto, where some valid points are raised. Personally, I'd suggest to remove the section altogether, engineering, CS, math, science, et al. Maybe that will stop the controversy, and as someone pointed out above, it's inherently POV anyway. --Qviri (talk) 19:32, 14 January 2006 (UTC)
    • It actually showed up a month ago, and the general consensus was that Wikipedians are inherently come from a tech background, either from Math/Enginnering, hence, creating a misrepresentation of what the school offers. Deleting the sections won't help either, because, similar to the reasoning above, also creates a misrepresentation of how the school differs from other universities in Canada. I'd suggest creating subsections, but I'm sure there are plenty of other people who rejects that idea as our page would be far longer than other universities, hence creating something similar to fancruft. --AlphaTwo 14:14, 16 January 2006 (UTC)

CS is overrated at UW. Science all the way. - unsigned anonymous user

  • Wow. What a good point. We might just have to listen to you [/sarcasm]. Did you not read the discussion at all? Prove your point with facts, then it becomes something that we can all debate. Bringing in your biased objective serves no good. Here's my question, if CS is overrated at UW, where is the best CS School in Canada then?
      • User:Qviri, good find! If the unsigned person had argued that U of T offers a competitive program that is on par, I might agree, but better? I'm pretty sure our graduates and their work/contribution in the industry (such as Jim Mitchell, WATFOR Compiler (involved with Java dev) or Rasmus Lerdorf - original author of PHP) far exceeds UofT's offering. --AlphaTwo
        • To be fair, while I couldn't find a certain reference to Jim Mitchell (although I strongly suspect he was in CS, as the Computer Systems Group that made WATFOR is part of School of CS), Rasmus Lerdorf is a Systems Design Engineering graduate. --Qviri (talk) 15:32, 19 January 2006 (UTC)
  • I think it makes sense to leave out the entire sentence for NPOV. An example of a strong program (POV I know) in science would be Biotechnology/Chartered Accountacy (90 admission average). Rather, statistically, saying the faculty admission average is higher for Math/Eng is more appropiate. Its hard to define "strong program". Higher admission average/quality of students does not necessarily mean "high quality education". In fact, personally I think its the co-op that makes math/ENG attractive. But when it comes down to education quality, I am sure that at least for engineering, its about the same as any other accredited engineering programs in Ontario since they're all regulated by PEO. So saying strong program naturally is POV, because I (and most of us) can't evaluate the quality of each and every single program across Ontario, since I won't go through them myself.

--Shion Uzuki 07:46, 26 January 2006 (UTC)

I am sick and tired of this revert war. I am going to give this article a major rewrite this evening in the near future, taking into account all that's been said here and more. Please refrain from edits and reverts until that time, as we can all see that the actions right now aren't taking us anywhere. --Qviri (talk) 15:57, 19 January 2006 (UTC)

          • The development of WATFOR was documented here at the Math Faculty homepage. As for Rasmus, I wasn't sure, but author of PHP? I naively thought of CS right away. As for rewriting the sections, go right ahead. Why can't we branch out into faculty pages, therefore removing this revertwar on this page? Other universities do it, why can't we?--AlphaTwo 18:30, 19 January 2006 (UTC)
    • You mean University of Waterloo Engineering or Faculty of Arts at the University of Waterloo and the like? Interesting, although I'm not sure we have enough material for this. To address the possible "omg long page fancruft" argument brought up above — as long as the material is NPOV and encyclopedic (ie, including floor plans of RCH would probably not be encyclopedic, regardless of the fact I would enjoy their inclusion) I will insist that the material remains. So what if other universities' pages are shorter? If someone has a problem with that, they should work the other pages up, not this page down... --Qviri (talk) 18:42, 19 January 2006 (UTC)
      • As an example, take a look at the faculty pages at Queen's University, Canada. It's a one liner. We can fill more stuff than that, right?--AlphaTwo 14:17, 20 January 2006 (UTC)

NPOV in future plans section

It seems to me that some of the writing in the future plans section is not NPOV. For example, "enthusiastic support" from "loyal" alumni. I've not edited for POV before, so I'm posting this note here to see if others agree with me before I make changes. Jesse Helmer 17:01, 25 Jan 2005 (UTC)

I touched it up a bit. You are right, it had some POV issues. Hopefully there are none now.. plus I removed some redundancy (all donations are generous). When in doubt in the future, be bold! Cheers. CryptoDerk 18:25, Jan 25, 2005 (UTC)


The paragraph describing Walksafe is unclear to me. Has the Walksafe program been ranked #1 in Canada for 11 straight years? Or has the Walksafe program contributed to Waterloo's high Maclean's Magazine rankings? (If the author of that section is trying to imply that's the case, I rather suspect that there are other larger reasons why Waterloo has done so well, although I'm sure Walksafe doesn't hurt either.) This should probably be revised by somebody who knows more about Walksafe than I do, or maybe I'll do some research myself at some point. Kraigus 18:28, 30 Jan 2005 (UTC)

I think that the implication is that the Walksafe program somehow boosts Waterloo's Maclean's ranking. I'm fairly positive that's not the case. (In fact, some question the usefulness of the Walksafe program!) There are things that would be more appropriate to highlight, for sure. Revived 01:17, 24 Feb 2005 (UTC)

Uh, what is walksafe? Something to do with walking safely I guess, but that doesn't really pin it down for me. Description, please! Lupin 06:11, 6 Mar 2005 (UTC)

The Walksafe homepage Arcuras 06:54, Mar 6, 2005 (UTC)

Are there any objections to me just removing the Walksafe item entirely? In an article of this depth, I don't really think it even deserves mention. It is just one of many services the university provides. What's there right now is a rather pointless summary. Revived 00:28, 11 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I think it would be okay to remove it, it's nothing that other universities don't also offer. --Spinboy 00:36, 11 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Famous People

Can anybody verify that Beckie Scott actually graduated? I found this reference: "She is also working towards an english degree from the University of Waterloo by correspondence." --
Ditto for Keith Beavers, he is still listed in uwdir as a student.

--Jdeboer 15:11, 25 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Do they have to have graduated? Can they not be listed if they are just a current student? --Spinboy 21:10, 25 Apr 2005 (UTC)
I checked out this site and it makes no reference to Waterloo. --Spinboy 21:15, 25 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Try this site instead "She is also working towards an english degree from the University of Waterloo by correspondence.". I would say for them to be called alumni, they have to graduate. Maybe the section title should be changed.. --Jdeboer 04:42, 27 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Where does it say you had to have graduated to be an alumni? --Spinboy 05:07, 27 Apr 2005 (UTC) defines alumni as "A male graduate or former student of a school, college, or university." [2] --Spinboy 05:11, 27 Apr 2005 (UTC)
The university itself seems to define an alumnus as somebody who actually completed a degree program there; I'm fairly sure you won't get very much out of Alumni Affairs without a UW degree. Kraigus 23:25, 28 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Kinda missing the point here. The heading is 'Famous Students', if we have to scour obscure corners of the Internet to even find a reference as to whether they exist, let alone Waterloo graduates then why are they here? At the very least, following the UofT example of 'Noted graduates and faculty' might be a better idea. I mean seriously, Miss Universe? Famous? -- Mucus 01:44, 11 May 2005 (UTC)
Why don't we just side step the issue by changing the section to 'Famous Alumni, Faculty and Students'? --Jdeboer 22:43, 4 May 2005 (UTC)
What would you say about Mike Lazaridis then? Lazaridis is a UW dropout who was recently given an honorary degree; so not an alumni, faculty, or student. --ShadowlessClick 20:30, 26 September 2005 (UTC)
I added a section, in keeping with the Wilfrid Laurier University page that illustrates the chancellors past and present. This is a more reasonable place for Mike Lazaridis. Missing one though and was unable to find it today. Will attempt to find it this weekend when in Waterloo. -- Razynder 18:09:00, 13 October 2005, (UTC)

I cleaned up the presentation somewhat, added a few cryptographers, and removed I. J. Young who I does not seem to be notable. --ShadowlessClick 20:30, 26 September 2005 (UTC)

Future plans/innovations by SyDE

The article states "In the past, innovations introduced by Systems Design are known to be eventually adopted by other engineering design departments, such as the integral first year design project component that was implemented decades ago."

I don't dispute that the engineering design projects were started by SyDE, but when I did my CompE degree, we did a fourth year design project, not a first year one. Maybe other departments within the faculty of engineering were doing something different, but it seems to me that wasn't the case; the purpose of the fourth-year design project was to demonstrate that you actually learned something in the previous three years and could apply your knowledge to the solution of some real-world problem. -- Superflex 14:35, 7 August 2005 (UTC)

In Mech Eng we have a design project in our ME100 course for 1A. There's a larger design project in the 4A and 4B terms for MechEng as well. I don't know about the other disciplines but Mechs do have a design project in their first year. -- 18:26, 25 August 2005 (UTC)

MIT of Canada?

No such thing..there is one MIT thats it. Please stop the bs...avoid self-aggrandizing statements. McGill would be Harvard of Canada then?

I don't mind you removing sentences, but please make sure the text makes grammatical sense after your change. It doesn't and I have to go fix it now. --qviri 21:00, 20 September 2005 (UTC)

Whether you agree, people refer to UW as the MIT of Canada. e.g. Six figures? Free pop? No thanks VIRGINIA GALT explores why promising tech graduates are choosing to stay in Canada VIRGINIA GALT 12 February 2001 The Globe and Mail "The three -- who did co-op placements for Gregory Brill, founder of New York-based software developer and consultancy Infusion Development Corp., -- are incredibly talented, says Mr. Brill, who describes the University of Waterloo as "the MIT of Canada."" -- Rmachenw 21 Sept 2005

What people are you exactly referring to? Not everyone agrees. A newspaper calls it the "MIT of Canada" does not give you the right to put it as a description of the University. If I put UofT > * would you agree? probably not. So drop it.

Actually, the phrase MIT of Canada and MIT of the North have been used frequently on campus, and even by some publications. Nearly 2000 google hits attests to this. Whether you like it or not is irrelevant, the fact remains that this nickname has been applied to UW, and is part of its culture, especially within its engineering and math departments. This isn't an issue of what any individual believes, but rather of doing simple research, which you have clearly not done. Mindmatrix 17:42, 22 September 2005 (UTC)
And by the way, nobody is claiming that UW is affiliated in any way with MIT, only that UW has this nickname. Neither are we saying that UW executives endorse this nickname. Mindmatrix 17:45, 22 September 2005 (UTC)
I've heard David Johnston and others use it (at internal speeches and within an office context). It may not be officially official, but it's there, for whatever that's worth. Kraigus 04:07, 15 October 2005 (UTC)

Clicking on the links you posted I get University of Carleton as MIT of the North?! Nicknames should not be put here. There is confusion between your so called "culture" and fact. Research is not needed for "nicknames"

By the way, my apologies for the rather strong statement earlier. Anyway, nicknames are part of the heritage of the school, just as they are for people or cities. Why should we apply a different standard to this article? Mindmatrix 20:55, 22 September 2005 (UTC)

The examples you listed are widely accepted through out the world and therefore is appropriate. MIT of Canada is a nickname only familiar to people at waterloo and listing it here is considered a form of advertising/promotion and a POV. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia where it should only contain facts NOT myths which only a small proportion of people recognise. There has been many discussions regarding so called nicknames for universities and most of them have been removed. end of discussion.

Research In Motion

How is RIM a spinoff or rooted in UW? I have seen no evidence to support this claim at all.

Two words: Mike Lazaridis.
In 1980, he enrolled at the University of Waterloo. He dropped out in 1985 shortly before graduation, having been offered a lucrative contract from General Motors for the nascent RIM.
So a university that Lazaridis dropped out of is suddenly the root of RIM? That seems to be a very weak association at best.--ShadowlessClick 07:09, 2 October 2005 (UTC)
It's no accident RIM buildings are right across Waterloo's campus. --qviri 20:49, 26 September 2005 (UTC)
Certainly RIM employs a number of UW coops as well as some graduates, however claiming RIM is a spinoff of UW is more than a bit misleading. The Maple symbolic computation suite was actually created at UW with UW resources and later spunoff as a commercial product and company. OpenText shares a similar history beginning as a UW research project to create an electronic OED. The same is true with Watcom. RIM does not share this same close association with UW.--ShadowlessClick 07:31, 2 October 2005 (UTC)
Devil's advocate: for instance, Lazaridis certainly associates himself with UW. Kraigus 13:58, 2 October 2005 (UTC)
How does a personal association equate to RIM being a spinoff of UW? If a CEO of a corporation was Christian, would you call the corporation a Christian company or a spinoff of Christianity? Bill Gates happens to be a philanthropist, do you believe Microsoft is a philanthropic organization? A corporate spinoff is by definition "a divestiture by a corporation of a division or subsidiary by issuing to stockholders shares in a new company set up to continue the operations of the division or subsidiary" or "the new company formed by such a divestiture"; clearly RIM does not fit this definition. If you were to take spinoff to mean "something derived from an earlier work, such as a television show starring a character who had a popular minor role in another show", stating RIM is a spinoff of UW would still be incorrect as RIM was never based off of any project or work from UW. Finally, it would be quite difficult to argue that RIM is a direct byproduct of UW. UW only official claims that RIM is "started by Waterloo graduates". Even this statement is erroneous since Lazaridis never graduated from UW and Doug Fregin, cofounder and current VPO, is from the University of Windsor.--ShadowlessClick 20:19, 2 October 2005 (UTC)

Obviously RIM is rooted in UW. It might not be a "spin off" in some strict definition of the word, but the description of the section says "Several companies have roots in, or have been spun off from the university". RIM was started by a UW student, and most of the employees at the beginning and now are UW grads. It has always hired lots of UW coops from the beginning. You might argue that they are not a spin off, but it's impossible to argue that RIM doesn't have it's "roots in" UW. You should add it back, and all the other companies started by UW grads and students too.

This is from the university website:

"Many high-tech companies trace their roots to UW, including Waterloo Maple, iAnywhere Solutions, Virtek Vision International, OpenText, Dalsa, Certicom, Intelligent Mechatronic Systems, Sirfic Wireless, Senesco Technologies, and Research in Motion."

Traditions and peculiarities

The "Students in the Faculty of Engineering receive the iron ring in their last term" is not a UW tradition or peculiarity. This practice is a tradition of the Engineering Institute of Canada and practiced by all Canadian engineers upon graduation. The tradtion has actually been copyrighted in Canada and the USA.--ShadowlessClick 07:39, 2 October 2005 (UTC)

If there are no objections, I will remove it from the UW article. --ShadowlessClick 20:33, 2 October 2005 (UTC)

There isn't really a "Faculty of Mathematics" building. The Math Faculty occupies at least two buildings (Davis Centre and Math & Computer). The rest of that peculiarity (that it - presumably MC - was designed to resemble a slide rule) strikes me as probably an urban legend, not unlike the sinking library or microchip DC. At any rate, I don't think it really belongs without a cite. Kraigus 04:10, 15 October 2005 (UTC)

It's true that in current times the 'Faculty' of Mathematics staff are scattered between the MC - Math and Computer Building - and the DC - Davis Centre. I will update the article to speak to the 'Math and Computer building' instead of 'the Faculty of Mathematics building. While I can not readily provide a reference online to confirm that the DC and MC achieved their shape through design, I can verify that both buildings do live up to the stated items when viewed from the intended angle. This is not uncommon for the campus. A good example being the sculpture entitled DAVID OF SASSOUN, made of Blue painted steel, by Armand Buzbuzian in 1977, found at the Math & Computer Building, SW corner. This sculpture, when viewed from the right angle is designed to resemmble a large 'C' 'S' (short for Computer Science). The effect is intentional. If I should happen across a referrence to the building's design, I will post it up here... in the meantime, I would argue they should stay. Unlike the 'sinking library' story which can be found on dozens of campuses, these 'peculiarities' are unique to Waterloo's campus and as such, a part of what make its culture unique. Razynder 00:29, 17 October 2005 (UTC)

Regarding the DC design reference, DC Virtual Tour Excerpt mentions that the building was "intended to look like the motherboard of a computer". Recurrence

History - originally conceived

The entry says: "The University of Waterloo was originally conceived in 1955 as the Waterloo College Associate Faculties (WCAF)," this Ontario Heritage Foundation plaque says: "In 1956 community leaders led by Dr. J. Gerald Hagey formed Waterloo College Associated Faculties, "

I suggest the concept probably originated in 1955 or earlier, but that the actual entity of WCAF formed in 1956. -- Rmachenw

traditions > pink ties

In traditions, for the entry under pink ties, someone wrote "These giant ties, "Pinky" and "Fuschia," were most recently stolen in November 2005 by a group of Engineers." That seems to imply that the pink tie on the MC wall during frosh week was stolen. Those ties aren't the same tie. I SUGGEST REMOVE!!!! ...?!

Actually, there are a few Pink Ties, so you're right... they aren't the same tie. The large one on the side of the building is kept safe by the faculty. Pinky and Fuschia are smaller ties (though still about 20 feet or more) which are used at smaller MathSOC events and are traditionally kept by the executive of the society. These smaller ties have been stolen repeatedly over the years... and recovered. The large tie on the side of the building has itself been stolen or damaged a few times and needed to be replaced, however, the one which is there currently has been there for well over a decade now. Personally, if we are tracking traditions, the reference to Pinky and Fuschia should stay as part of the 'tradition'... but perhaps it could be worded better such that there is no confusion with the tie on the building. Razynder 16:55, 11 December 2005 (UTC)

Adding a co-op section?

UW was a pioneer in coop, and it remains one of our defining features. Maybe we should have a section about coop? Talk about the types of coop jobs? Would this go under "Ties with industry"?

Spin offs

The current section's one line description of the companys not needed; they are best described on their own pages. Instead, I am going to replace the descriptions with how they are relevant to Waterloo.

I also took RIM off the list; neither co-founder (Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie) were affliated with the university at the time they started the company.

More companies:

These links provide a list of UW related companies, they should be searched for spin-offs.

--Jdeboer 10:52, 13 December 2005 (UTC)

If we attempt to list all the companies started by Waterloo students or grads, we will be here all night, so instead I propose we only list the companies started by professors (e.g. SlipStream) or started using technology developed at the university (e.g. OpenText). A grey area would be QNX, which was rumoured to be developed in the RTOS undergrad course, but since the university didn't actually sponser it, I would leave it out. Another grey area is RIM, there are claims that the technology was actually developed at the university, although they are not widely acknowledged; if they can be validated, then RIM belongs in the list.

A modified list:

--Jdeboer 15:28, 27 December 2005 (UTC)

Why can't we "spinoff" a seperate page elsewhere that contains all companies that have connections to UW? It's no different than having a seperate page listing Famous alumni and faculty that most school pages have.--AlphaTwo 14:23, 20 January 2006 (UTC)


Does anyone feel the page organization is getting out of hand? Some of the photos are quite unrelated to the section. Maybe we should group them into a gallery. And also, should we remove the school of architecture relocation from "future plans"? That was done ages ago!

Wikipedia is not a mere collection of links, nor is wikipedia a course calender. Some of these may be worth mentioning, what ever the case, the section should be fleshed out. --Jdeboer 02:21, 18 December 2005 (UTC)

Why shouldn't this information be there? It serves to introduce what the university consists of. Instead of having paragraphs of dense material, this presentation is much better visually.


see WP:WIN -- 05:17, 18 December 2005 (UTC)

i guess i should stop wasting time trying to improve this then.

MIT has a similar Organization construction at their entry. It's been around a while, perhaps it has merit. Recurrence 03:20, 19 December 2005 (UTC)

The links posted here are different than the MIT page. And stop using MIT as a backup and all this Canadian MIT BS.

just by having a different wikipedia page from MIT doesn't prove the point we are different than MIT... and I don't think Recurrence is trying to use MIT as a BACKUP for anything.

Stop the BS. the only reason why MIT is brought into this discussion is because you guys follow what is written on the MIT page and now you're pissed because you can't keep the pathetic cumbersome links and repeated information.

When have 'I' mentioned MIT before in the history of Wikipedia? I was reading something else and it happened to link to the MIT page at Wikipedia and that's where I recalled the organization flip-flap. Harvard and CalTech also have Organization sections. As do UWO and Toronto. In fact, every single University page I've opened in the last five minutes has an Organization section, except Waterloo :). 23:28, 19 December 2005 (UTC)

Who exactly are "you"? MIT was mentioned by member "recurrence" in this discussion only. "You" said a lot of other universities have organization sections however, you cannot gasp the difference between their pages and the one here. UWO and Toronto for example have ONLY listed the faculties and NOT every single subject and schools; something I believe you cannot comprehend :)

Sorry, I wasn't logged in at the time. I assumed my comment would imply it was me :). I noted that I thought the idea had Merit, I didn't expect to be flamed by somebody informing me I was spreading 'Canadian MIT BS'. That doesn't mean it has to be in the form that it was in. Just that the concept of an organization section has merit ;). That it may be something that the Waterloo page lacks. The gist of my reply is that arguing about 'MIT' was irrelevant because many university pages have organizational sections. Recurrence 04:28, 20 December 2005 (UTC)

btw, I did not originally create this section. But I still think an organization section is a good idea. Perhaps a bit of info. on the labs or functional groups. IQC and ICR are notable. Recurrence 04:33, 20 December 2005 (UTC)

I created this section upon noticing that a lot of other schools had such an organization section... I believe at least the faculty and affiliated colleges should be mentioned in the article. And perhaps we might need to work on the Laboratories and groups section on which labs and groups are worth mentioning. Perhaps if we include a brief introductory sentence or two about the laboratories... it would be a good addition to the article.

The affiliated colleges are already on the page. No need to repost information.


  • Faculty of Applied Heath Sciences[3]: Health Studies and Gerontology, Kinesiology, Recreation and Leaisure Studies
  • Faculty of Arts[4]: Accountancy, Anthropology, Classical Studies, Drama, Economics, English Language and Literature, Fine Arts, French Studies, Geography (Arts), German, History, Italian Studies, Legal Studies, Medieval Studies, Music, Peace and Conflict Studies, Philosophy, Political Science, Psychology, Religious Studies, Russian and Slavic Studies, Social Development Studies, Sociology, Spanish and Latin American Studies, Speech Communication, Studies in Sexuality, Marriage and the Family, Women's Studies
  • Faculty of Engineering[5]: Architecture, Chemical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Computer Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Geological Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Mechatronics Engineering, Nanotechnology Engineering, Software Engineering, Systems Design Engineering
  • Faculty of Environmental Studies[6]: Environment and Business, Environmental and Resource Studies, Geography, Planning, Local Economic Development, Tourism Policy and Planning
  • Faculty of Mathematics[7]: Actuarial Science, Applied Mathematics, Bioinformatics, Business Administration (BBA/BMath double degree), Chartered Accountancy, Combinatorics and Optimization, Computational Mathematics, Computer Science, Mathematical Sciences, Mathematical Physics, Operations Research, Pure Mathematics, Software Engineering, Statistics, Mathematics (Teaching Option), Mathematics (3 year general degree)
  • Faculty of Science[8]: Biochemistry, Biology, Chemistry, Earth Sciences, Physics, Science and Business
  • Other degree programs: Graduate Studies, Independent Studies, Centre for Business, Entrepreneurship and Technology
File:Centre for Environmental and Information Tech.jpg
Centre for Environmental and Information Technology


  • School of Accountancy
  • School of Architecture
  • David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science
  • School of Optometry
  • School of Pharmacy
  • School of Planning
  • School of Social Work

Affiliated Colleges

The UW campus is known for its greenery. With three lakes and a conservation area on campus, it is home to a wide variety of vegetation and wildlife.

The UW campus is known for its greenery. With three lakes and a conservation area on campus, it is home to a wide variety of vegetation and wildlife.
  • Bell Canada Software Reliability Laboratory[9]
  • UW Compter Graphics Laboratory[10]
  • Computational Epistemology Laboratory[11]
  • Coding and Signal Transmission Laboratory[12]
  • Environmental Isotope Laboratory[13]
  • Microelectronics Heat Transfer Laboratory[14]
  • Waterloo Laboratory for Earth Observations[15]
  • Advanced Interface Design Laboratory[16]
  • Laboratory for Studies in Environmental Fluid Flow[17]
  • Cardiorespiratory & Vascular Dynamics Lab[18]
  • Institute for Quantum Computing[19]
  • Institute for Computer Research[20]
  • Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies[21]
  • Business and Industrial Statistics Research Group[22]
  • Nortel Networks Institute[23]
  • Waterloo Institute for Health Informatics[24]
  • Institute for Innovation Research[25]

--Jdeboer 09:39, 15 December 2005 (UTC)

Arts Faculty

The article claims that the Arts faculty is the largest on campus. I don't think that is true.

  • It is true that the Arts faculty has the most undergraduate students enrolled.
  • Arts has more faculty than Engineering (2004: Arts 213, Eng 197). However, their faculty complement (current + open positions) are nearly identical (2004: Arts 206.5, Eng 204). At the Engineering complement's rate of growth it will easily overtake Arts in 2005.
  • However, both Math and Engineering have issued more honours degrees in recent years; in 2004 Arts issued 631 Honours BAs, Math issed 775 Honours BMaths.
  • Engineering has more BUI teaching units than Arts. (2004: Eng: 8316, Arts: 8228)
  • Engineering and Math have larger budgets than Arts (2004: Eng $29.3mil, Arts: $26.0mil, Math $29.7mil)
  • Both Engineering and Math have larger support staffs than Arts


With these mixed numbers, the statement that Arts is the largest faculty is dubious at best. -- 18:22, 11 January 2006 (UTC)

I'm not sure what honours degrees conferred has to do with the size of the faculty. What about non-honours degrees? -- Kraigus 21:31, 11 January 2006 (UTC)

who gives a crap about whether the engineering and math have larger budgets and issue more honours degrees... the statement 'the largest faculty' STILL HOLDS... PERIOD

not sure what innovations is about

but it looks like a science student trying to show only science stuff...i think it should be removed...JamieJones talk 12:42, 27 January 2006 (UTC)

It does seem somewhat biased considering only sciences are mentioned. I can't think of any off the top of my head, but other examples from other faculties can make that section somewhat NPOV.--AlphaTwo 13:51, 27 January 2006 (UTC)
I like the split off idea JamieJones talk 19:57, 27 January 2006 (UTC)
It was bound to happen. With the recent stream of POV statements and repeated RVs done on the page, we really need to break off the few pages. Hopefully that will remove some of the POV department promotion, or at least move it away from the main page.

Federation of Students and it's clubs

I made a post in the talks page over here a while back, but no response. Should Fedclubs get a seperate page that links to Feds, which would then link to here?--AlphaTwo 17:22, 29 January 2006 (UTC)

The co-op system then was revised in involving four-month terms rather than the initial three-month terms.

The above sentence has an typo in it. Its in the history section, Sorry if I said this in the wrong place or the wrong way.

Hey guys, for those who are from the university and damn proud of it, use the following UserBox. Thanks! {{User Waterloo}}

Waterloo crest.png This user has an affiliation with the University of Waterloo.

--AlphaTwo 21:29, 23 January 2006 (UTC)

Please, when leaving messages, always sign it properly by typing four tildes (~~~~) after your message. Thanks. -- Rediahs 01:32, 13 January 2006 (UTC)

Federation of Students and its clubs

I made a post in the talks page over here a while back, but no response. Should Fedclubs get a seperate page that links to Feds, which would then link to here?--AlphaTwo 17:22, 29 January 2006 (UTC)

my rewrite

... or at least what it pretends to be.

I very intentionally left out the faculty ratings. This page now has rankings and reputation of university as a whole. Feel free to add more, positive or negative, as long as you quote a reliable source (ie, not someone's blog). Do not add faculty rankings/reputations/other crap here. There are redlinks at the bottom of the page waiting for that.

I regretfully inform that questionable edits without an edit summary or follow-up (better yet, pre-edit) discussion on this talk page may be reverted without prior warning. If you're an anonymous user and feel this page exhibits excessive amounts of bias/POV, please register yourself an account - it's psychologically much easier to discuss issues with a user than with a number. I have archived the previous discussions since the page was getting far too messy.

Now, a bit about more specific of my edits:

  • The History section utilises a lot of stuff written by - thanks a lot, made my life a lot easier. Also moved some stuff from Future Plans to History as time flow warrantied.
    - no problem, I really thought a history section for UW was necessary. - (pajaro)
  • The Reputation section is currently a bit Maclean's heavy - if someone wanted to add some more stuff to balance it out, that'd be appreciated. I think we should keep it at approximately 1.5*current length, though, after that that'll just get excessive.
  • I removed the MPs from famous alumni -- IMVHO being one of 300 people elected across the country isn't enough of a notability claim, and that list looks a bit long anyway. Feel free to argue me wrong. I'd love to cut out some other marginally notable people from that list, but I don't know enough about them, so I'll refrain
  • Cut out some stuff from the Traditions and Pecularities. The Pink Tie stuff is included in the Tie Guard. I'd keep the "Sydney, Australia; California; Florence; Munich, Germany and in Butchart Gardens, Victoria, B.C.", but without a precise location in California it'd look silly.

That'll be all. Thanks for your co-operation; I look forward to watching this article grow. In a good way. --Qviri (talk) 04:13, 31 January 2006 (UTC)

Math and CS Department Page

Info that can be added in the section:

  • The Tie used to be a frequent victim of abuse from other faculties' students, which led to the formation of the Tie Guard 1994.
  • The Log was showcased on the 3rd floor of the Math and Computer building (MC) until it was stolen in late 2005 by the engineers. It has been returned since.

OR, we could talk about stuff people actually care about, like the programs, departments, reputation, famous grads.

Yes, of course that's what will go in. My list was just a list of items that was removed from the main page that can go into the Math /CS page. This is just a mere backup of what's was removed.--AlphaTwo 14:32, 8 February 2006 (UTC)

University of Waterloo Template

Here's a template I've made to quickly link all the UW pages together. {{University of Waterloo}}

Some of you may noticed that the University Colleges are not listed, nor any of the Center of .... As I've explained in the discussion, I can't think of a good place to put it without making it awkward. If you have a better suggestion, please feel free to make the changes.--AlphaTwo 02:20, 14 February 2006 (UTC)


Since using stock photos from the University violates most Copyrights, is there anyone on campus who's willing to go out and get some photos for our use?--AlphaTwo 16:56, 14 February 2006 (UTC)

Sure, if you don't mind it taking a while for them to appear. I have a serviceable digital camera and I work on campus, so I don't mind taking a few minutes to get some pix. Any preferences? Should we avoid the classic "DC at night" and "DPL from the ground" shots? Kraigus 16:16, 16 February 2006 (UTC)

  • Nothing much came from that, huh. Either way. I'm on campus now to do some photo work if need be. Any suggestions on what I should snap for?--AlphaTwo 21:10, 16 May 2006 (UTC)
    • Every time I have time, I left my damn camera at home. Every time I remember to bring it, I'm either busy all day or forget I have it by the time I get in. Mind like a steel sieve. I was going to go for some pictures unlike those you usually see on the university website (DC or DPL at night gets boring). It's still goose season - maybe geese down by the stream, near the bridge behind NH? Construction on the new building by DC? PAS doesn't seem to get much photographic love either, I think it's an interesting looking building, and even if it's not the most attractive, it's representative. I've been doing the "remember camera in morning, forget I have it til it's time to go home" trick the last few days, but with Monday off my wife and I are considering taking a walking tour of campus to get some shots. Kraigus 04:03, 1 July 2006 (UTC)

famous people

seems like the list is growing a bit long...the article is now 1/4 famous people...seems like a lot, like everyone is putting there favourite person. Maybe this could be a separate page, or shortened? JamieJones talk 12:54, 28 February 2006 (UTC)

Agreed. Let's wait for a few more replies first before moving it though.--AlphaTwo 14:37, 28 February 2006 (UTC)
Thirded. I was getting annoyed by that list a while ago, but I already have a reputation as a Science hater so I didn't want to piss anyone off by deleting their favourite alumni. I think that pruning everyone with a redlink would be a good start; if they're famous, they likely have a Wikipedia page.
Done. New page created. University of Waterloo, Famous alumni and faculty JamieJones talk 23:34, 7 March 2006 (UTC)

Separate dicussion

Incidentally, while reading around Java programming language I found no proof of this: Jim Mitchell - Java software language inventor. --Qviri (talk) 21:14, 1 March 2006 (UTC)
"Dr. Mitchell has been working with computers since 1962 at the University of Waterloo where he and three other undergraduates developed the first WATFOR compiler." - From numerous websites, both UWaterloo based and Sun based. However, that's the only reference in regards to Waterloo. He did move on to be heavily involved with Java, but I guess that's often confused with his "creation" of Java.-AlphaTwo Sometime on March 1 (forgot to tage it.)
I wasn't questioning his Waterloo connection - his involvement with WATFOR is unquestionable. I was just wondering about the Java thing. Thanks, Qviri (talk) 16:10, 2 March 2006 (UTC)
Then I guess the stright answer would be no, unless his involvement was uncredited somehow. He was never mentioned in Sun's article on the history of Java, which is what Java programming language used as a reference for their history.--AlphaTwo 16:19, 2 March 2006 (UTC)

Removed attrition for CS

*The Computer Science program is currently experiencing attrition problems and has established a group to investigate the reasons for students switching out of the CS program. This group is headed by a former UW grad.

This was the case as long as five years ago; it doesn't seem like much like a relevant fact or figure, and hence it was removed. JamieJones talk 12:32, 24 March 2006 (UTC)

I think it's relevent because of the huge feedback that the department got when it asked it's current and pass students regarding the attrition rate. It's a problem that the department has yet to resolve, and it's bringing the quality of the degree down. Consider that the average admission rate has dropped from high 80s-low 90s to it's current range of low 80s (anything above 78 will do), and consider the fact that the amount of material that is being covered in each course is getting a significant reduction (partly because of the Double Cohort). The fact that the department has recently increased the amount of possible fails while maintaining the honours degree is a demonstration of the scope of the problem.--AlphaTwo 13:36, 24 March 2006 (UTC)
Considering that every student in Computer Science at the university was asked to complete a very extensive survey about the problem and significant funds from the mathematics endowment fund were directed toward the survey I feel that this is also a very relevant fact.
To current UW students, I'm sure it seems relevant. However, in the past the same sort of discussions were had. In 1996, I knew someone who got into the program with a 78% average. That was ten years ago. In 2000/2001, their were surveys about attrition. There were all kinds of proposals an initiatives. I'm not saying that what you're claiming is untrue, i'm saying it's an ongoing problem, and that while it might very pertinent to current students, I don't think it has a place among a wikipedia article. I don't think it's NPOV, just as I wouldn't want to get into the scandals revolving around where money disappeared to from several well-known scandals at UW - sure they are "facts", but they are hard to present neutrally and really irrelevant for what most people probably want from a wikipedia "encyclopedic" point of view.JamieJones talk 17:06, 25 March 2006 (UTC) (please sign your comments)"
As another example, check out these budget cuts. Again, relevant to UW but not important for a wikipedia article. JamieJones talk 17:18, 25 March 2006 (UTC)
So, becuase it's an issue that's been around, and not deemed "important", then we should leave it off? The fact that it's an ongoing problem, and it's hard to stay POV does not mean that it should be removed. --AlphaTwo 18:13, 26 March 2006 (UTC)
AlphaTwo.. I'm questioning what your sources are for "anything about 78% will do". I'm on the CS recruitment commitee, and from what I remember, this year, applications have gone up significantly. Also, I don't see the connection between a high attrition rate and lowering the "quality" of the degree, for example, the high attrition rate might be due to high academic standards, resulting in less but higher quality students. I guess none of this matters. However, you seem to put as many negative comments about CS as possible, as justification that that the sentence should be in the article, when most of the stuff you are saying is not relavent.
You are right, I don't have a source. It's purely anecdotal evidence, which is the reason I'm leaving a message here instead of putting stuff right on the main page. Since you mentioned that you are on the CS recruitment commitee, that must mean there are some hard facts that can back your point. Would it be a problem if you can point out your source of information?
You seemed to be confused as to my point of starting a topic here, because if I was justifying that sentence to be placed on the page, I would have done so already. I'm just raising a point in questioning what's the general concensus on whether it's a noteworthy information or not, and if so, did the sentence need rewording to fit what is happening. --AlphaTwo 15:31, 28 March 2006 (UTC)

ES paragraph in reputation section

Why is this here? Why mention environmental studies specifically, rather than other faculties or research areas?

  • Yea, maybe it should be in the ES section?--Shion Uzuki 04:43, 29 March 2006 (UTC)
I'm unfarmiliar with ES, but we do have a Red Linked page for it on the UW Template if you feel like moving the stuff there.: University of Waterloo Faculty of Environmental Studies.--AlphaTwo 05:00, 29 March 2006 (UTC)

I was about to say that ES kids are probably too lazy to create their own article from the redlink provided. Then I realised that thanks to a verifiability paranoia, IP users can no longer create articles, just expand them. Perhaps we should create stubs for all the faculties and let IPs expand it, cleaning it up periodically if necessary? --Qviri (talk) 15:15, 29 March 2006 (UTC)

Oh. Is that so? When did this all happen? Either way. Stubs ahoy! --AlphaTwo 18:14, 29 March 2006 (UTC)
I couldn't find a link to the precise announcement, but it was sometime around December 5th, 2005. (See WP:AFC.) Apparently we were getting too much new-page vandalism from anons. Personally I do not agree with the decision, but what are you going to do. --Qviri (talk) 18:47, 29 March 2006 (UTC)
It was after highly reported incidents of Congress staff changing Wiki entries for other Senators and their bosses to change NPV. Also, there was a joke edit saying John Seigenthaler Sr. was a suspect in te JFK assassination. So Wales said IP users can't make new pages. --[Chris.]
Which doesn't make sense, since none of these incidents involved creating new pages, but nevermind... --Qviri (talk) 13:27, 11 April 2006 (UTC)
Well, the Seigenthaler incident did actually involve the creation of a new page. That alone doesn't necessarily justify the change in policy, but there are plenty of other good reasons. Of course, this isn't really the right place to discuss this, but whatever. :) —smably 18:20, 11 April 2006 (UTC)

Should this be moved to the ES page now?

Yes, I believe so. If you want to talk about how much good UW is contributing to the environmeny, then discuss their acievements in UWAFT and such. But again.. that probably belongs in a different section as well ChaoticLlama 19:20, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

Proposed merged back into Main Page

I've created new pages for each red link. Hopefully someone can add in the details.--Shion Uzuki 03:37, 6 April 2006 (UTC)

Mmm, details didn't get through so well. (Science was proposed to be merged back...) I've sent an email to Chris of, asking him to post a follow-up of sorts to [26] with a request for data about AHS, Arts, ES and Science. We'll see if and how that goes. --Qviri (talk) 15:32, 6 April 2006 (UTC)
And we're in: [27]. Some of the results can be already seen, for example here. --Qviri (talk) 17:05, 8 April 2006 (UTC)
I think that the poster who suggested merging the page jumped the gun and was too bold in suggesting the merge without backing up their reasoning. Either way, I've slapped a quick one-liner onto the page, hopefully that's a start.--AlphaTwo 05:27, 9 April 2006 (UTC)

Weasel words

"The University of Waterloo is famous for being the groundbreaking proponent of co-operative education in Canada and currently maintains the largest such program in the world." plus the entire Reputation section. Ardenn 04:36, 10 April 2006 (UTC)

I guess I didn't get the memo. That particular sentence seems pretty factual (and accurate) to me. All it needs is a cite. Parudox 05:03, 10 April 2006 (UTC)
It's much more productive to bring up particular issues here. Most of what you deemed to be non-neutral or "weasel words" seems to be verifiable fact. Parudox 05:11, 10 April 2006 (UTC)
It was suggested to me I should fix it rather than slapping tags on. I've put the tag back. There's no cited source for that quote. Ardenn 05:36, 10 April 2006 (UTC)
Good job, you've reminded me why I stopped editing this page. Back to the sweet oblivion it is. (Are you sure there aren't any Ottawa pages that need to be updated or something?) --Qviri (talk) 12:30, 10 April 2006 (UTC)
As long as they can cite a secondary source for the having the "largest and most successful co-op program in the world", then keep it.ChaoticLlama 19:26, 27 March 2007 (UTC)

RIM as a spin-off

(moved from above by User:Qviri)

  • Shouldn't the list of spinoff companies include RIM? --colchar 10April 2006 12:36 (18:36 GMT)
    • It should be included as a company that "has roots in" UW, since that's not disputed as far as I can tell. Parudox 17:55, 10 April 2006 (UTC)
      • I think that "has roots" part was chopped off as we hit the "degrees of seperation" problem. Too many small to mid size companies have their roots in UW, does including RIM justify having all?--AlphaTwo 01:16, 12 April 2006 (UTC)
        • I'm not finding any other companies (not RIM and not in the list) that are notable enough to have their own Wikipedia article, with that article mentioning UW. Parudox 12:28, 12 April 2006 (UTC)
        • The arguments against including RIM are specious at best. He was a student at UW. He was attending the school when he invented the technology. Others who worked with/for him at the time were UW students. He situated his company at the northeast corner of campus. Seriously...any arguments that RIM is not a spinoff are specious and should be disregarded. We can argue semantics all we want here but RIM should go into the article. colchar 11:49, 12 April 2006 (UTC)
          • The university looks at spin-offs as including companies in any of three categories (Transfer of Technology, Transfer of Knowledge through people, Transfer of Knowledge through research) [28]. These categories referred to in the 2001 PwC study are similar to those in the 1994 Spin-off profiles. I think RIM is listed in that document. Anyway if you consider transfer of knowledge through people as fitting in with spin-offs, then RIM would fit. If you require that the company be started with university technology, university research, or university employees, then it probably would not. rmachenw 12 April 2006
            • The only thing is that I'd be wary of using the term spin-off for something other than a research group project that becomes a separate company. Parudox 05:05, 13 April 2006 (UTC)

Bill Gates photo

Currently, we have this photo in the article, claimed as Wikipedia:Fair use:


While browsing around on flickr, I have discovered this photo, which even includes a kick-ass full-size version. Now if we can convince the owner to allow us to upload this to Wikipedia, or better yet the Commons, with something like {{No rights reserved}} or {{PD-self}}, that would be very nice ^_^ --Qviri (talk) 03:03, 18 April 2006 (UTC)

Just replaced with Image:Gates Bill talking05 14338.jpg. Arniep 20:45, 17
That picture isn't from his talk at Waterloo, there wasn't even a chalkboard, unless I've gone mad...
You are right. The photo of Gates had an image tag of October 12, 2005. A simple google search landed this: Bill Gates surprises students as "stand in" professor, which was Gates at a "UW" - "University of Wisconsin", where suprisingly enough, that exact image showed up. --AlphaTwo 06:46, 29 June 2006 (UTC)
If I recall in the past there was a photo with Gates in front of a screen that says UW on it in the past in this article. Here it is [29]. I'm not sure how to check copyrights and get approval, but it is their media website, so possibly someone could replace it? Jeff 11:21, 29 June 2006 (UTC)
I fixed description Image:Gates Bill talking05 14338.jpg to say "University of Wisconsin" rather than "University of Waterloo" -- Canwolf 17:37, 29 June 2006 (UTC)

Proportion of Asian Students (POV-Dispute)

POV dispute is this: Does a majority of one culture still constitute as multiculturism? Several comments in the page are spun in such a way as to disguise the fact that the majority of foreign students are Chinese. Someone reading this page could get the wrong impression that UW is multicultural. Let's stick to the facts. 03:22, 4 July 2006 (UTC)

Yes, it is still multicultural. Ardenn 03:26, 4 July 2006 (UTC)
Good to see you explained yourself. I ask you again to stop vandalizing this page, namely removing the image above. 03:29, 4 July 2006 (UTC)
Same could be said for you. Ardenn 03:31, 4 July 2006 (UTC)
"The large number of students of Asian descent contributes to the university's unique and multicultural atmosphere." This is quite biased, namely towards multiculturism being defined as uniculturism. Most Universities have strict policies to encourage an equal distribution of foreign students, where as the University of Waterloo goes out of it's way to recruit as many Chinese nationals as possible, as is evident by all of the recent exchange contracts signed by the University and the People's Republic of China. 03:34, 4 July 2006 (UTC)
By law, the University has to take so many domestic students. Thus, it is still multicultural. Ardenn 03:35, 4 July 2006 (UTC)
My comment was totally unrelated to the number of domestic students, but rather to the number of foreign students. I'm also not familiar with the statement you have just made, do you have a reference? 03:41, 4 July 2006 (UTC)
You have to take into account the domenstic students, which come from a variety of backgrounds. Waterloo is a publically funded university, and as such, is required to admit (I believe it's 3/4) from Ontario. Ardenn 05:28, 4 July 2006 (UTC)

Re: The University of Waterloo has the largest proportion of students of Asian descent out of all of the universities in Canada. This was reported in the May 2005 issue of Feng Hua Yuan magazine Feng Hua. The large number of students of Asian descent contributes to the university's unique and multicultural atmosphere.

This should be removed. Is it just me, or is there obvious bias in that? Last time I checked UW was a Canadian university, not a Chinese one. I don't think the large number of foreign students who don't bother to learn English contribute to a unique multicultural atmosphere. If you want multiculture, look at Stanford, Berkeley or Oxford -- a little bit of everything. When a University is 50% Chinese, that is not multiculturism-- that's called uniculturism. 11:02, 3 July 2006 (UTC)


Asian descent != Chinese

Asian descent != foreign

Foreign students != students who don't bother to learn English

50% Chinese: Really? Do you have a reference?

--Mucus 22:46, 3 July 2006 (UTC)

Why does it matter that the school has a large proportion of Asian students. This should not be in the facts and figures. University of Western Ontario's page does not state that they have a large proportion of good looking white students.

...because a proportion is commonly represented as a number, also known as a Figure? If you could find a citation for your assertion about Western, feel free to add it there. --Mucus 00:49, 4 July 2006 (UTC)


The website address of the magainze in question, Feng Hua Yuan, is It is quite clear it is a Cantonese Chinese magazine, and was quite clearly referring to the number of Chinese students from China at the University of Waterloo. In regards to your first two inequalities, they are incorrect. They are Chinese. They are foreign. And, they do not speak English (as is evident by any attempt made to communicate with them). More evidence of their inability to speak English is evident from the ELPE charts, where over 95% of them fail. In particular, Feng Hua Yuan made a point of how convenient it was for Chinese students to go to UW because they're not required to speak fluent English. So, I disagree with every single point you have made.

50%? Not quite. But close. If you would take the time to go to this page, these are statistics kindly provided by the University: As you can see, the # of Chinese students is increasing at an alarming rate. In the year 2002 there were 1821 students from China. In the year 2003 there were 2627. In 2004 there were 3048. In the year 2005 there were 3413. In reality, this number is much greater, if you factor in UK, Hong Kong, Taiwan, etc. This is excluding students from Taiwan, Hong Kong, Korea, Malaysia, etc. Please note that a majority of UK citizens at the University of Waterloo are actually Chinese residents who resided there prior to UK seceding control of Hong Kong to China. In summary,

Year | # of Chinese students

2002 1821 2003 2627 2004 3048 2005 3413

Cumulative growth rate: 17%/year.

Considering the fulltime undergraduate population is roughly 20,000, this comprises 20% if you factor in all of the other citizenships of the foreign Chinese students. Note that the statistics per faculty aren't available, but most of the foreign Chinese are in mathematics, with a few in engineering. Almost none are in arts. So when you consider the Math faculty's meager size, it is very likely that foreign non-English speaking Chinese comprise over 50% of the student population. This is very easily evident by a quick stroll through the MC.

If you consider the fact that the enrollment at UW overall only grows at approximately 500 students a year, this is approximately 2% a year. Using this rough approximation, by 2015 UW will be in excess of 50% foreign Chinese. By the year 2025, UW will be 100% Chinese.

Last time I checked, this is Canada, not China. 02:37, 4 July 2006 (UTC)

I cannot verify your numbers. For 2005/2006, the link you provided gives 1403 international and permanent residents of Chinese descent across the whole university. Assuming that your figure of 20,000 is correct. That means 7% of the university is comprised of Chinese foreign students. This is a far cry from 50%.
As for your rant about their English skills, I do not see how it is relevant to whether Waterloo is multicultural or not. Also, while it would be amusing to see Waterloo completely taken over by Chinese students by 2025, this is also not relevant to Waterloo in the present day. A reference for the ELPE statistics that you speak of would be interesting, if you could provide them. Thanks for your input. --Mucus 04:31, 5 July 2006 (UTC)
So? Who cares? What's your point? --Ardenn 03:17, 4 July 2006 (UTC)
What was your point again? Please refrain from modifying this page if you have nothing to contribute to the discussion, especially if you do not attend the University of Waterloo. Thanks. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs)
I looked for that paragraph, and I don't see it in the article. Ardenn 03:25, 4 July 2006 (UTC)
One. If you are going to project growth population, please use logarithmic rates. The way you prove things means anything is possible; we are talking about facts, but guestimates. Second. I've seen your continous edits trying to prove your point that UW is Chinese-population heavy, and have gone on repeately to revert other edits to prove your point, where is the going exactly? The fact that we can all sit here debating whether it is true or not means that we don't have enough facts to say one way or another, hence, it's not exactly something you put on the top of the page.--AlphaTwo 14:30, 4 July 2006 (UTC)

This is absurd, yes there are alot of students of asian descent on campus, and a fair amount of them are Chineese, but even if there was the (obviously incredible claim) of 50% chineese foreign students, the fact of the matter is that would not make the Campus any less multicultural. There would still be another 50% of the students from a smattering of cultures, and china itself, home of a billion people has various cultures of it's own. If you start to include areas like taiwan and hong kong in your estimates of chineese student population, this increases the cultural diversity within this supposedly homogonous group. But all of this is besides the point, ethnic make up does not multiculturalism make. Multiculturalism is about policies and practices that are accepting of diversity, not about population make up. A culture that has an overwhelming majority of students from one culture can still be a 'multicultural' institution, so long as it respects/protects the cultures which are in the minority. The discussion you would want to be having is not 'how many chineese students attend UW', or (as the main pay say's currently) 'The University of Waterloo has the lowest proportion of students of European descent out of all of the universities in Canada. The low number of students of European descent takes away from the university's multicultural atmosphere.' but you would want to talk about UW's Policy 33, and how well it is enacted (via the Student Life Office's Diversity Program). There has been historic argument that Policy 33 (most relevent to UW multiculturalism) was lip service, but the diversity campaign is slowly dispatching those arguments (yes, they do more than just give out black wristbands). I won't go into great detail involving the diversity campaign, but I will say that arguments can be made about how effective it is, and how large a problem it is addressing. However, these arguments havn't been made here, so i'm 'being bold' and removing the 'european ancenstry', which I beleive is uncited because it is blatently 'original resarch'. --Bigmacd24 00:42, 6 July 2006 (UTC)

I have attempted to read through your post several times, however I am at a loss when it comes to discerning your thesis. It was a clever attempt to remove the European Ancenstry comment, which is on the same level as the Asian Ancenstry comment; why should one remain while the other is removed? Being bold, which in your case is a not-so-transparent attempt at imposing your view onto others, is no substitute for being objective. 16:05, 6 July 2006 (UTC)
"The low number of students of European descent takes away from the university's multicultural atmosphere." Clever. Adding an opinion to a fact so that it sneaks in as a fact. Seriously, how can you back that up as a fact? Cite your source, not a "I walked by the MC, hence it must be true"...--AlphaTwo 17:36, 6 July 2006 (UTC)
Again, you have failed to comprehend that "The large number of students of Asian descent contributes to the university's unique and multicultural atmosphere." and "The low number of students of European descent takes away from the university's multicultural atmosphere." are saying essentially the same things; the latter being a corollary of the first, or the other way around if you prefer. If you remove one, remove the other. My whole point is the first one is introducing bias into the article. I'm sure even a simple person like yourself can comprehend that bias can either sway towards the positive or negative. If you need sources regarding the European post, ask the original poster, I did not post this. However, note that Feng Shua Yan Ding Dong magazine or whatever it's called was not specifically quoted either. As a matter of fact, citations are needed. 18:11, 6 July 2006 (UTC)
I removed the comment from the main page because it was unverifiable according to Wikipedia's verifiablility rules. Furthermore, I was dismayed that many sites have mirrored the U of W page, complete with the comments about multiculturalism. This is not encyclopedic. The author has overlooked a problem with veriability - the University of Waterloo does not gather statistics on the ethnicity (etc) of its students. So, if the sentence is rewritten to refer to international students from Asian countries, that would probable be verifiable. But as no data is gathered by the university of student ethnicity, this comment seems more of a "flame" and at best an impossibly unverifiable comment. JamieJones talk 19:38, 6 July 2006 (UTC)

Look, there needs to be a statement about the percentage of the population that is foreign as it does dictate the University's policies to a great degree. They base most of there services around the majority of the population beinging of foreign decent namely oriental and it is one downside of the univeristy. Thus it must be included so that there are tow sides of the arguement. We need to get exact statistics though but in math it seems like the first-years are 85 to 90% oriental. This is also a item that separates UW from allot of other schools and separates it so vastly from Wilfrid Laurier University. - Dr Killby

Are they actually foreign, or Canadians of Asian ancestry? The proportion of foreign students in the overall student body is likely to be low (though I haven't found the stats yet). Moreover, you haven't stated which services are based on the student body being predominantly "foreign". If you want to include this, please source the facts, and provide reliable citations to support them. Statements like "it seems like the first-years are 85 to 90% oriental" are not sufficiently rigorous to include in Wikipedia. Mindmatrix 15:11, 16 March 2007 (UTC)

Professional Development for Engineering Students

Seeing as how this wonderful program was recently initiated by Waterloo, perhaps we should make a mention of this on the page. Homepage. I see this program as something that will make the university stand out, and I think it deserves mention. It is true that no university in Canada has adopted such a program, and that Waterloo has been on the forefront of innovation in co-operative education. I, for one, hope students will welcome this program into their reasons for joining Waterloo. -- 23:26, 10 July 2006 (UTC)

If anything it should be mentioned under University of Waterloo Faculty of Engineering. I'm in the first class of PDEng and I wouldn't say it's that significant. If you want to add something to the UW page, wait a few months until all the plans for PDMAth, PDSci, etc. are unveiled and then it can be mentioned under co-op as a Professional Development course.

RIM as a company started by an alumnus

Technically RIM founder Mike Lazaridis is an alumnus by definition [30], since he spent over 4 years at UW (and though he didn't get his B.A.Sc. then, they did give him n honourary degree). Mike Lazaridis therefore is not a graduate of UW.

Tie Guard

Is this not a disporportionatly large blurb about the Tie Guard for the UW page? It's a once a year event which could be summarized. Would it not be more appropriate to include it in full with University of Waterloo Faculty of Mathematics? Jeff 13:38, 16 August 2006 (UTC)

I agree. It seems that there's too much slant for the Math Dept now that Tie Guard is on the main page. Either we relocate it somewhere else, or we give approximatly the same amount of space for something like the Tool.--AlphaTwo 16:02, 16 August 2006 (UTC)
This should receive no more than a one-sentence mention on this page; same goes for the Tool. Also, I think that each deserves some explanation in their respective faculty pages, but not to the extent that "Tie Guard" is mentioned in the current version of this article. These are of relatively minor importance to the respective faculties as well. Perhaps a separate article about Traditions at the University of Waterloo could be created instead. Mindmatrix 16:28, 16 August 2006 (UTC)
I moved it to the Math Faculty page because the Tie is their mascot. The Pink Tie already is mentioned twice on this page so I see no need to add a mention of Tie Guard. I think I'd prefer putting traditions with their respective faculty instead of creating a separate article as this seems to be more relevant. Kratoz 17:27, 16 August 2006 (UTC)

Fraternity and Sorority Awareness

I reverted the change that added the FSA link because the FSA is not part of UW. It is a club under the Federation of Students. Another reason is if we allow a club to be added, then the other 200 clubs will be added, which should not be allowed. Also since the University does not recognize the Fraternaties and Sororities, it's inclusion could lead to the impression it does. If people want to open the door to all 200 clubs being added, they can do so on the University of Waterloo Federation of Students Page, though I would oppose this because 200 external links will be cluttering and there is a link to the Feds webpage which has all of them and their websites listed. Kratoz 18:35, 24 August 2006 (UTC)

Waterloo Science FTW!

The rest of you are all faculty fanboys!

No. You stop trolling and reverting that page about science. We're not here to debate whether Science is good or not, because that is a quote from a published article and we are quoting it word for word.--AlphaTwo 12:37, 30 January 2007 (UTC)
Omit the sentence.
No. You have yet to give a legit reason on why it should be done. We're citing a reputable source in a direct quote.--AlphaTwo 08:09, 8 March 2007 (UTC)
You are a math student. Realize that you are biased. Besides, go ahead and ban me if you want. There are at least 20 of us science students that know about this. We will continue to change the quote whether YOU like it or not.
Apart from blocking your IP (we don't ban IPs), we can also protect the article from editing by anonymous IP users, or block an entire range of IP addresses if the need arises. Mindmatrix 16:02, 9 March 2007 (UTC)
Hmm. I find it interesting that you purposely and repeatedly attempt to remove "computer", hence leaving science. As you've stated, you're in Science, won't that make you biased? Again. The quote is from Macleans, a source even the University continously cite as a reference. --AlphaTwo 16:27, 9 March 2007 (UTC)
Whether it's a quote or not, it's clearly offending a large group of students. There was a re-write of the entire article because of a quote like that - why introduce it again? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 07:03, 10 March 2007 (UTC).
Large group of students? The only one making this change on the front page, and making comments here, is your IP. As far as you suggesting that the page has been rewritten because of it, as mentioned above in "my rewrite", you may want to just read the next sentence:
  • If you're an anonymous user and feel this page exhibits excessive amounts of bias/POV, please register yourself an account - it's psychologically much easier to discuss issues with a user than with a number. I have archived the previous discussions since the page was getting far too messy.--AlphaTwo 17:45, 10 March 2007 (UTC) Yes, a fairly large group of students. Obviously they've forgotten about it now. Look up the issue on - a re-write was made which removed such statements. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 23:03, 11 March 2007 (UTC).


The university recently introduced an "interesting" program called PDENG to engineering students as an additional course. This was Waterloo's solution to its declining popularity and reputation. The program is described as to help students gain experience in the professional world. Majority of students are complaining about the program about it's dryness, uselessness and its unprofessional appeal. Spelling mistakes and other errors can often be found in its text and PDENG features long and boring essays that students are required to read, and then forces students to write to explain their understanding. The questions asked are often silly and rhetorical, such as "Why do you think reading this module helped you at work." The marking of the assignments are also questionable, unlike how the university had promised, assignments are currently being marked by young students of the university (as young as second years). -- User:

I pulled it over here because a) It should not be at the top, and b) questionable bias. Anyone feel like taking a stab at this?--AlphaTwo 05:47, 31 January 2007 (UTC)

You were right to pull it since it is biased, full of factual errors, and poorly written. I am a student at UW Engineering as well as a member of the first class to go through PDEng. It does not belong on this page as PDEng is a specific engineering course. There are other courses for other departments in the university, such as PD1 for math. There is no justification to the comment "This was Waterloo's solution to its declining popularity and reputation" as the faculty has said it is inresponse to alumni and industry feedback, and to improve the co-op program. The tone of this addition is unencyclopedic, and subjective.Kratoz 19:12, 31 January 2007 (UTC)
As a total aside: There's been a lot of random useless edits from the 129.97.* domains. Do these people not know that we know that they are posting right from the University? I'm wondering if this has been an ongoing problem. --AlphaTwo 04:22, 8 February 2007 (UTC)