Advancing Nuclear Studies at the U of S
The U of S will move ahead to establish a nuclear research centre thanks to a seven year, $30 million funding commitment from the Government of Saskatchewan.
The university has a strong history of nuclear research—a history that includes pioneering the use of Cobalt 60 in cancer treatment in the early 1960s, a SLOWPOKE research reactor run by the Saskatchewan Research Council, a tokamak fusion reactor housed in the Physics Building and the Canadian Light Source synchrotron.
The proposed centre—unofficially named the Institute for Nuclear Studies (INS)—will cover a broad range of study with particular focus on nuclear medicine, nuclear science and engineering, and materials science.
Hiring an interim director and forming a business plan and governance structure are immediate priorities for the INS. Activities at the centre will begin this year with a small staff coordinating research programs across campus and is expected to create 12 new faculty positions, six new staff positions, and support 30 graduate students and post-doctoral fellows by 2016.
Two days after the INS funding announcement, a joint federal and provincial announcement was made committing $17 million for an advanced research cyclotron, a particle accelerator to be used for research into isotope use and detection technologies for medical diagnosis and treatment. It will also produce isotopes for the province’s first PET-CT scan, which will be funded jointly by the province and the Royal University Hospital Foundation.
The existing Animal Resources Centre located between the Canadian Light Source and the Western College of Veterinary Medicine is being explored as a possible location for the cyclotron facility.
Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall (BA’87) (left), the Hon. Sylvia Fedoruk (BA’49, MA’51, LLD’06), co-inventor of the Cobalt 60 unit, Rob Norris, Saskatchewan Minister of Advanced Education, Employment and Immigration, and President Peter MacKinnon (LLM’76) pose with a piece of a betatron used for cancer treatment in the past.
photo by Mark Ferguson
Phytotron Gets Funding for Upgrades
The College of Agriculture and Bioresources will be able to complete upgrades to its phytotron facility—a facility that enables year-long plant growth for testing in a variety of conditions by controlling variables such as light, humidity and temperature—thanks to $6.5 million in funding. The federal government, through Western Economic Diversification, is contributing $4.5 million, the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture is providing $2 million and $3 million is coming from the university. Saskatchewan Pulse Growers and Western Grains Research Foundation previously committed $1 million each.
“Milkotron” Gets Funding
Referencing other large investments at the university—the phytotron and cyclotron—Federal Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz announced support for the “milkotron”, the long-awaited dairy research facility.
Approved by the Board of Governors in 2009, the project will proceed thanks to funding from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Western Economic Diversification, the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture, the university, private donors and industry groups.
Original plans were to locate the new facility on the site of the current dairy barn, which was built in 1972. Housing a larger herd necessitates its relocation to an area on campus south of East Road next to Preston Avenue.
Medical Isotope Project at CLS
The Canadian Light Source (CLS) synchrotron will lead a project to begin proving the feasibility of producing medical isotopes using an electron linear accelerator. The proof of the concept has already been done by the National Research Council; whether that can be scaled up to produce isotopes of commercial interest or not is the question they hope to answer.
Natural Resources Canada committed $10 million for the project in January, and the Saskatchewan government will contribute another $2 million.
Mark de Jong, CLS deputy director and director of accelerators, says that as one of only two Canadian science facilities with expertise in the use of linear accelerators, the CLS has somewhat of an obligation to contribute to the project.
Mark de Jong
U of S Water Week
The U of S celebrated Water Week March 21–25 by hosting a series of lectures and events. Among those that presented were Allan Casey (BA’86), author of the 2010 Governor General’s Award winning book Lakeland: Journeys into the Soul of Canada, Howard Wheater, Canada Excellence Research Chair (CERC) in Water Security, and John Pomeroy (BSc’83, PhD’88), Canada Research Chair in Water Resources and Climate Change.
On World Water Day, March 22, the new Global Institute for Water Security at the University of Saskatchewan was officially launched. Located in Environment Canada’s National Hydrology Research Centre at Innovation Place, the institute brings people together from across the university to work closely with partners— in particular Environment Canada, Ag Canada and the Saskatchewan Research Council—to capitalize on the strengths on campus and focus on some of the water challenges we face.
Lectures can be viewed online at www.usask.ca/water/water-week.
President MacKinnon to Step Down in 2012
On March 4, President Peter MacKinnon informed the Board of Governors of his decision to step down from his role as president of the U of S on June 30, 2012.
A combination of circumstances—such as an able and experienced Board of Governors, a collegial, integrated and very able group of senior executives, a stable budget and planning cycle, and an experienced chancellor—led MacKinnon to determine, “This is as good a time as any for that transition [to a new president].”
MacKinnon plans to stay in Saskatoon and hopes to write about his experiences as president or his understanding of the evolution of the University of Saskatchewan and its connection to the province.
MacKinnon will be the third longest serving president at the U of S, behind Walter Murray (1908–37) and John W.T. Spinks (1959–74).The Board of Governors has begun the search for the next U of S president.
Law Students Win International Award
Mediation Advocacy Moot Team (l-r) John Sanche, Luciella Longo, Gillian Gough, coach Kathryn Ford, QC, Markel Chernenkoff, Kelly Canham, assistant coach Glen Gardner and Sabina Arulampalam
The U of S Mediation Advocacy Moot Team, a group of students who compete in simulated legal trials, won three awards in London, England at the International Academy of Dispute Resolution’s 10th Annual International Law School Mediation Tournament, March 25–26.
Six College of Law students and their two coaches won an award for Outstanding New International Mediation Program, given to those selected as the best new programs at the competition.
These results cap off a successful year for college’s moot teams. The Jessup Moot Team won the much-coveted Spirit of the Jessup Award in Calgary in early March, distinguishing them as the team that best represents the true spirit of the competition. The Western Canada Moot Team won the national Sopinka Cup in Ottawa after winning the MacIntyre Cup at the Western Canada regional level in Edmonton in February.
Source: U of S News Release
Joan Greyeyes (BEd’79, PGD’79, MEd’05), special advisor on Aboriginal issues, was among the speakers at the Jan. 25 event to celebrate iPortal.
photo by Liam Richards
Over 25,000 full-text records are now available through the Indigenous Studies Portal (iPortal), providing learning and research opportunities by connecting people from around the world with specialized indigenous studies resources.
The University of Saskatchewan Library project links full-text indigenous-related electronic resources—such as e-books, articles, theses, websites, video, photographs, diaries and anthropological field material—not available through the library catalogue or internet search.
Huskies to Celebrate 100 Years
Huskie Athletics will celebrate its 100th anniversary during the 2011–12 season.
The Hon. Sylvia Fedoruk (BA’49, MA’51, LLD’06)—a member of 12 intervarsity championship teams—is the honourary chair of the centennial celebrations planning committee. University of Saskatchewan Chancellor Vera Pezer (BA’62, MA’64, PhD’77)—a four-time Canadian ladies’ curling champion, a Canadian softball champion and a two-time member of the Saskatchewan senior women’s golf team—is chairperson of the committee.
Celebrations will encompass four themes: heritage, alumni, education and legacy. The goals of the year-long celebration are to promote and enhance the student-athlete experience, provide a legacy for Huskie Athletics and to pay tribute to past and present Huskie Athletics stakeholders.
Centennial celebrations will kick-off September 10, 2011, at the University of Saskatchewan Athletics Wall of Fame event. Nomination information can be found at www.huskies.usask.ca/walloffame.
Source: Huskie Athletics
Kloppenburgs Donate Sculptures
Mother and Child with Bear Spirit, a stone and antler carving by Christine Aaluk Sivanertak of Naujaat (Repulse Bay), is one of the 55 pieces in the new Henry and Cheryl Kloppenburg Collection of Inuit Sculpture.
photo by Mark Ferguson
Henry (BA’65, LLB’68) and Cheryl (BA’70, Arts’71, LLB’75, MA’75) Kloppenburg donated a 55-piece collection of Inuit sculpture to the University of Saskatchewan in January. The collection, which includes art from dozens of artists from 14 different communities in the Canadian Arctic, is now on permanent display in the College of Agriculture and Bioresources.
Both Henry and Cheryl are among the University of Saskatchewan 100 Alumni of Influence.
Unless otherwise noted, news items are drawn from recent editions of On Campus News, the official newspaper of the University of Saskatchewan. For more past and current U of S news, see On Campus News at www.usask.ca/ocn/