On Campus

Rick Mercer visits the U of S

Rick Mercer

Comedy star Rick Mercer visited the U of S at the end of October for a feature on his CBC show, the Rick Mercer Report. While meeting the students of the Formula SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) team, Mercer agreed to provide sponsorship in the form of new racing suits, and then participated in a race with the students (pictured). A man of his word, the new team racing suits arrived in January.

A full video of Mercer's visit can be found at www.cbc.ca/mercerreport under season 5, episode 6.

University reviews land holdings; paves way for new development

Driven in part by a proposal to develop agricultural land for student residences, the University has begun a review of urban land usage and the opportunities that these properties may hold for the future. A task force, struck by Vice-President of Finance and Resources Richard Florizone, will look at the approximately 1500 acres of non-core urban land owned by the University.

At the same time, the University's Board of Governors have agreed to finalize lease arrangements that will allow for a third phase of Preston Crossing, a retail centre in Saskatoon. The development would contain an additional "big box" store and possibly one small tenant on the 10.42 acres located east of the existing Walmart store.

The land leased to the Preston Crossing development currently generates just over $1 million a year in revenue that is directed to student scholarships.

Sci-Fi Camps in Engineering win award for outreach from national agency Actua

The College of Engineering's Sci-Fi Science Camps were recognized recently for their leadership and innovation by Actua, Canada's leading science, engineering and youth outreach network. Actua says that Sci-Fi was chosen for the award for its commitment in reaching minority and isolated populations throughout the province. More information about the camps can be found at http://www.scifi.usask.ca/.


Joan Greyeyes was appointed as the Special Advisor on Aboriginal Initiatives on November 1, 2007. Greyeyes earned her Bachelor of Education from the University of Saskatchewan in 1979. She returned as a part-time instructor for the Indian Teacher Education Program in the 1980's and was on campus again in the early 1990's as the Director of the Aboriginal Students' Centre. As Special Advisor on Aboriginal Initiatives, Greyeyes will identify and execute initiatives that support Aboriginal inclusion across the University.

Brett Fairbairn

Brett Fairbairn, head of the History Department has been named to the position of Provost and Vice-President Academic at the University of Saskatchewan. Fairbairn's appointment was announced on November 29th, 2007 by President Peter MacKinnon, who headed the search for a replacement. The new Provost and VP will assume his duties on July 1, 2008.

U of S President Peter MacKinnon has been appointed to a new Science, Technology and Innovation Council set up by the federal government to provide advice on science and technology issues as well as monitor Canada's progress relative to international standards. The 17-member council will report to the federal minister of industry.

Grains Innovation Lab and Feed Technology Research Facility to break ground this spring

The College of Agriculture and Bioresources is eager to break ground on two new facilities in spring of 2008. The Feed Technology Research Facility is a unique $12.6 million dollar pilot plant focusing on feed processing technology and animal nutrition. The Grains Innovation Laboratory, which has outgrown its current space in the AgBio building, will have a centralized location for the quality screening of grains and be able to expand its programming. Both buildings will be located in the Farmstead North Precinct at Preston Avenue and 108th Street.

Biomedical Research Wing D goes to tender

Biomedical Research Wing D goes to tender

The University's Board of Governors has approved a call for tenders on the first of two major Academic Health Sciences building projects. The Biomedical Research Wing (pictured) will wrap around the west and north sides of the existing Health Sciences building and will house biocontainment research labs, office space, and a research animal facility. The estimated cost of the project is $111.7 million.

These news items are drawn from recent issues of On Campus News, the official newspaper of the University of Saskatchewan. For more past and current U of S news, visit OCN at www.usask.ca/ocn