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silhouettes of performersThe International Students Got Talent competition will showcase cultures from around the world, Tuesday at noon in the CAW Student Centre.

International students to show off talents

More than a dozen acts will take to the student centre stage at noon Tuesday, Nov. 12, to compete in the International Students Got Talent contest.

Judges will rate performances in dance, music, and more as students vie for cash prizes and glory.

The event grew out of an effort by the International Student Centre to address issues of isolation and belonging identified by UWindsor faculty and staff as among the top challenges facing international students.

“This is a great way for the campus community to learn more about international students and to see the variety of talents from across the world,” says the centre’s director, Beth Oakley.

Finalists were selected based on videos submitted by contestants. In addition to receiving $250 cash, the top act will be named on a plaque displayed in the International Student Centre.

Richard MoonUWindsor law professor Richard Moon will discuss the increasingly partisan employment of the term “free speech” Tuesday in a Humanities Week lecture.

Conversations to open Humanities Week

Free public events Monday and Tuesday, Nov. 11 and 12, will kick off Humanities Week.

First up, recent graduates of programs in humanities will offer “Advice from the Real World” at 1 p.m. Monday in the Leddy Library’s first floor Collaboratory. Speakers will describe their challenging and engaging careers, and talk with the current students about what to expect after finishing their degrees.

On Tuesday, law professor Richard Moon will explore the growing incidence and severity of campus disputes over expression in his lecture “The invented crisis: Universities and the demise of free speech.” His presentation will begin at 6 p.m. in the Performance Hall, SoCA Armouries, 37 University Ave. East.

For more on these events and others during Humanities Week visit the website of the Humanities Research Group.

—Dana Roe

Kiirsti OwenKiirsti Owen birdwatching at the Cape May Bird Observatory after she won the best student presentation award at the joint meeting of the Association of Field Ornithologists and the Wilson Ornithological Society.

Good news for avian conservation earns student best presentation award at international conference

A presentation on bird biodiversity in tropical forests won accolades for UWindsor graduate student Kiirsti Owen last week at the joint annual meeting of the Association of Field Ornithologists and the Wilson Ornithological Society.

Ornithologists gathered from across North America in Cape May, New Jersey, to discuss the latest advances in avian research. Owen’s research won the prize for the best student presentation at the conference.

“My presentation was about our research on how bird communities are recovering in regenerating tropical dry forests,” said Owen, a master’s student in the Department of Integrative Biology. “I think people enjoyed my talk because it’s a good-news story for conservation.”

Working in the dry forests of northwestern Costa Rica, Owen showed that when tropical forests mature, avian biodiversity increases.

“We’ve shown that birds are benefitting from the impressive restoration efforts in Guanacaste, Costa Rica,” she said.

Owen said she was pleased by the recognition.

“It was such an honour just to present my research at this international conference,” she said. “Then to stand up in front of hundreds of ornithologists, including some of North America’s leading researchers in this field, and be given the top student award… That is something I will never forget.”

Karan Odom, a University of Windsor alum who is now a postdoctoral researcher at Cornell University, was in the audience.

“As a University of Windsor alumnus, I was really proud of Kiirsti for winning the best presentation award at this meeting,” Dr. Odom said. “It was a big meeting, with more than 300 ornithologists from across North America. It was so exciting to see Kiirsti win this award for delivering such a great presentation.”

Professor Dan Mennill, Owen’s faculty supervisor, noted that the Association of Field Ornithologists and the Wilson Ornithological Society are two of the oldest scientific societies in the field, sharing a rich tradition of outstanding science and conservation practices.

“Kiirsti’s exciting findings on tropical biodiversity, and her excellent presentation skills, contributed to this best presentation award,” Dr. Mennill said. “At an international meeting of scientists from across North America, her award is a truly great moment for University of Windsor!”

poppy pinThe UWindsor community is invited to observe Remembrance Day outside Memorial Hall today at 10:45 a.m.

Reminder: campus Remembrance Day service today

UWindsor students, faculty, and staff are invited to a Remembrance Day ceremony outside the east entrance to Memorial Hall today — Monday, Nov. 11 — at 10:45 a.m.

The Office of Human Resources has made a provision for non-essential university employees to attend the ceremony, which will last until approximately 11:15 a.m. In particular, anyone on campus who has served in the military is especially welcome to attend.

Those on campus who cannot attend are invited to observe two minutes of silence at 11 a.m. The University’s flags will be lowered in commemoration.

medical devices: syringe, stethoscopeFree flu vaccines are available at a Nov. 18 clinic in the student centre.

Influenza vaccination clinic set for Nov. 18

Vaccinating against the influenza virus is the best way to protect yourself and your loved ones from getting sick this flu season, advises Student Health Services. The flu vaccine is safe and most reactions only consist of mild irritation at the injection site.

The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit is hosting a free flu vaccine clinic in the CAW Student Centre Commons from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Nov. 18.

This clinic is particularly valuable to international and out-of-province students as it does not require an Ontario Health Card. Those unable to attend the flu clinic are encouraged to receive their vaccinations at any participating pharmacies including the CAW Student Centre Pharmacy, located on the student centre’s lower level.

Susan Oliver, Ivan Hutchins, Anthony Forster, Alan St. Clair Gibson, Robert Gordon, Chris Busch, Dominic Micklewright, Michael Siu, John Preston.A delegation from the University of Essex visited the UWindsor campus Friday to discuss strategic partnerships between the two institutions. From left: Susan Oliver, Ivan Hutchins, Anthony Forster, Alan St. Clair Gibson, Robert Gordon, Chris Busch, Dominic Micklewright, Michael Siu, John Preston.

U.K. delegation seeks closer ties between Windsor and Essex

A delegation from the United Kingdom’s University of Essex touring several Ontario universities seeking strategic partnerships saved the best for last — meeting Friday with University of Windsor faculty and administrators.

The two schools already share an exchange agreement which sends undergraduate students overseas in both directions, making Windsor an “obvious choice” as a Canadian partner, said Essex vice-chancellor Anthony Forster.

“Over a number of years, we have developed ties with the University of Windsor in several areas,” he said. “Our students on exchange report that your school is really strong in terms of extracurricular activities as well as in the classroom.”

UWindsor president Robert Gordon noted that Essex is a good fit for the school’s ongoing efforts at internationalization.

“There are so many similarities between our two institutions,” said Dr. Gordon. “I am excited to build on some of the connections we have already enjoyed.”

Besides Dr. Forster, the Essex delegation included its dean for partnerships, head of international business, and deputy deans for research from the faculties of humanities, social science, and science and health. They toured campus research and teaching facilities and met with representatives from the UWindsor Faculty of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences; School of Social Work; Faculty of Human Kinetics; and International Student Centre.

hands working on actuarial tablesJoe Nunes and Jason Vary of Actuarial Solutions Inc. will discuss careers in the field with interested students Tuesday.

Presentation to discuss actuarial careers

A free presentation Tuesday, Nov. 12, will introduce university and secondary students to careers as an actuary.

Two officials from the Windsor-based firm Actuarial Solutions — president Jason Vary and executive chair Joe Nunes — will discuss “The Actuarial Profession in Canada” from 4:30 to 6 p.m. in room 1121, Education Building.

Among the topics they will cover are employment prospects, the nature of the work, areas of practice, and available education and internship options.

New Kids on the Blockchain logoA symposium on campus Nov. 22 will discuss the future of blockchain.

Blockchain subject of symposium and workshops

The New Kids on the Blockchain symposium, Nov. 22 in the Odette Building, will feature speakers from diverse industries to share their views on this year’s topic, “Transformation to Decentralized System: The Future of Blockchain at Your Workplace.”

Now in its third year, the event is presented by the Entrepreneurship Practice and Innovation Centre (EPICentre) in partnership with the School of Computer Science, Office of Research and Innovations Services, and Cross-Border Institute.

Speakers with include Windsor law professor Muharem Kianieff and professor Brent Furneaux of the Odette School of Business. The symposium is set for room 104, Odette Building, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Admission is free but space is limited. Register on http://www.epicentreuwindsor.ca/event-single/?event_id=309.

Computer science professor Sherif Saad and his graduate students will lead two hands-on workshops — beginner and advanced — for those interested in learning how to build an application with blockchain technology. They are set for 10 a.m. and noon on Saturday, Nov. 23.

Attendees will receive certificates of completion; registration costs $15 for students and $25 for non-students. Details and registration on http://www.epicentreuwindsor.ca/event-single/?event_id=310.