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UBC Reports Dec 4, 2003

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VOLUME  49   I  NUMBER  12   I  DECEMBER  4,2003
2 UBC in the News
3 Pinkjustice
4 New Marshal
5 Pregnant Pause
7 Finding Diamonds
8 Kudos
>M For decades, university
■ students had a simple
Bf way to rate their profes-
' sors — word of mouth.
These days, they're more
likely to visit a website called
ratemyprofessors.com where students
can anonymously post comments on
the teaching abilities of their instructors. They can even use chili peppers
to identify who's "hot" on campus.
And if you think UBC students
aren't using it — think again. The
U.S.-based site contains reviews of
nearly 250,000 post-secondary teachers across North America — including
1,810 instructors from UBC.
If Laura Best has her way, UBC
students won't need to rely on chili
pepper rankings to get information
about their professors.
Earlier this year, Best, the VP
Academic for the AMS, began
working with university officials to
create the Teaching Excellence
Initiative (TEI), an online database
containing comprehensive evaluation
data on UBC instructors.
"Students are frustrated so they're
creating their own evaluation
systems," Best says. "They want this
information, and it should be presented in a professional manner, not with
chili pepper rankings beside
professors' names.
"UBC has wonderful faculty, brilliant researchers and engaging teachers. They're diverse and accomplished
and [with TEI], I want to showcase
that to incoming and current students
so that when they have to make
choices about courses, or about
coming here to UBC, they can make
educated decisions."
Currently, UBC has no centralized
database of information on its faculty
members and instructors, and access
to evaluation data is inconsistent
among the university's 12 faculties. In
the past, another AMS initiative called
the Yardstick attempted to provide
online teaching evaluations, but the
project failed due to lack of faculty
participation, limited scope of information, and concerns that the system
was being used to compare and judge
Grading the Professors
New database makes it official, by michelle cook
Arts student Taura Best (I) and economics lecturer Robert Gateman put the bite on rating professors with chili peppers.
faculty members.
The TEI database would be a maintained by the university and searchable by instructor or course. It would
contain information on an instructor's
various areas of expertise — teaching,
research and published works — as
well as strengths and interests. Best
would also like the database to eventually include each professor's teaching philosophy.
Best hopes the TEFs scope will help
it to succeed where the Yardstick did
"I think that it's comprehensive and
that has been a real selling point with
people who aren't comfortable with
the idea of a professor with a number
rating beside their name," she says.
As a third-year arts student, Best
says she finds it frustrating to fill out
evaluation forms for her courses at
the end of each term and never see
the end result of the evaluation
process. Judging from feedback
received by the AMS, other students
feel the same way.
"Students e-mail me asking about
teaching evaluations for certain
departments and during the AMS
elections, students were asking what
we would do about evaluations,"
Best says.
"Now, if you want an evaluation
on a teacher, you have go to the
department in person and request it.
If you want to know what a professor's research interests are, you have
to go to the department homepage.
Then, if you want to find a course
that the professor teaches, you have
to go to the student services centre.
The information is out there, but at
different levels of accessibility and
most students don't know to ask for
evaluations and most departments
don't publicize them," Best says.
In comparison, the University of
Western Ontario has a comprehensive
online database of undergraduate
course and instructor evaluations that
is maintained by the university. The
University of Toronto works with the
Arts and Science Student Union to
publish the "anti-calendar" a comprehensive online listing of professor
evaluations that is publicly accessible
and supported by the dean of Arts and
Science. Based on the recommendations of a task force created to look at
teaching evaluations, the University of
Calgary has created a Universal
Student Rating of Instruction (USRI)
website that includes a ratings database accessible to students and faculty.
McGill is beginning to make its
teaching evaluations available
through an Internet database.
Although the TEI is still in its early
stages, Best has been encouraged by
the support it has received from the
university administration, senate, the
AMS and The Centre for Teaching
and Academic Growth (TAG).
"Our belief is that students should
have as much good information as
possible to choices about what
courses they want to take and that
information needs to be in-depth and
multidimensional," says TAG director
Gary Poole.
The Faculty of Arts was already
building a database of teaching
evaluations and professor profiles
when it was approached by Best to
participate in the AMS initiative. The
faculty sees the benefits of the TEI for
both students and professors says
Margery Fee, associate dean for Arts.
"I think this is great step forward.
My feeling is that we have some
excellent teachers here at UBC and
some average, and some even below
average, and this will help professors
get their competitive urges going."
Best admits that some faculties, like
Arts, are more interested in TEI than
others. She hopes that when the Arts
site launches in spring 2004, it will
spur all faculties to participate.
"Students have been asking for
evaluations for a long time and it's a
question of finding a way that's
accessible to students and representative of faculty members and beneficial
to the university and I think this
model addresses all those needs." □
Unspoken Epidemic
This model shows a night view concept of the new Irving K. Barber
Learning Centre which, when completed in 2005, will transform UBC's
main library into a state of the art resource centre accessible to all
British Columbians. It is currently under construction around the core
of the Main Library, which opened in 1925. It will add more than
200,000 new square feet of inside floor spaced fully equipped to support wireless technology both inside and out. □
What is the effect of continued
exposure to the suffering of others?
That's the question UBC
researchers and international trauma
specialists will explore in an interdisciplinary workshop to be held in 2004
at UBC's Peter Wall Institute for
Advanced Studies (PWIAS).
Cumulative exposure to suffering
may result in vicarious trauma, also
known as secondary trauma or
compassion fatigue. Affecting people
working with traumatized survivors,
the condition is characterized by a
transformation within the helper
because of their empathy with the survivor. The transformation often means
the helper develops similar traumatic
stress reactions as the survivor.
Dr. David Kuhl, of the department
of family practice, along with Assoc.
Prof. Maria Arvay and Prof. Marv
Westwood of the department of educational and counselling psychology
and special education, are organizing
a workshop to examine the scope and
severity of vicarious trauma and also
look at prevention and treatment
strategies. Vicarious trauma affects
both professional and nonprofessional  helpers,  however,  the
workshop will focus  solely on the
effect on professionals ranging from
nurses, doctors and humanitarian aid
workers to lawyers and journalists.
"Vicarious    trauma    has    been
recognized for about 15 years but
there is little research in the area and
no prevention or treatment programs
exist," says Kuhl, an expert in palliative care and doctor-patient communication. "Left untreated, caregivers can
become cynical, disillusioned, even
intolerant and hostile toward everyone in their life — including the person they are supposed to be helping."
Listening to graphic descriptions of
horrific events or witnessing or
hearing of people's cruelty to one
another are just some of the
experiences that can lead to vicarious
trauma — an occupational hazard for
many professional helpers.
Symptoms of vicarious trauma can
emerge without warning. They include
fatigue, heart palpitations, difficulty
concentrating and decision-making
and feelings of anxiety, irritability
and a cynical, dehumanizing attitude.
Other signs are intrusive imagery
and thoughts, depression or
Often there is a significant
disruption in identity, worldview, or
religious beliefs. Those with a prior
history of significant trauma or
instability may suffer to a greater
As symptoms progress, the helper
can become less sensitive to the
victim's concerns.
Dying patients have told Kuhl that
the way the health-care provider
communicated with them caused more
suffering than the illness itself. The
interactions start a downward spiral of
pain, unmet needs and additional
trauma, for both victim and helper. A
Canadian Medical Association study
recently reported that 45 per cent
of doctors show features of burnout
— a possible component of vicarious
continued on page 6 2       |      UBC      REPORTS       |       DECEMBER     4,     2 O O 3
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UBC Researcher
Discovers 'Control
Room' that Regulates
Immune Response
The approximately 50 million people in the U.S. who
suffer from autoimmune diseases like HIV/AIDS, multiple
sclerosis, and arthritis, may
soon be able to control their
immune responses, thanks to
a breakthrough discovery by
UBC microbiology and
immunology professor
Wilfred Jefferies.
Jefferies has discovered and
characterized the mechanics
of a cellular pathway that
triggers immune responses,
reported the Associated Press.
He and his team have also
uncovered a specialized cell
substructure, or organelle,
that dictates exactly how the
immune system will be activated.
Jefferies believes that it will take
about five years for scientists to use
this information to create new therapies such as medication or vaccines
to regulate immune responses in
A New Kind of Genome
Some scientists are now sequencing
"metagenomes," the DNA of entire
ecosystems. The new efforts seek to
read all the DNA in the bacterial
communities found in a patch of
soil or seawater or even the lining of
the human gut.
Extracting DNA fragments from
the environment can be difficult,
particularly from soil, which contains acids that break down the
genetic material.
"It sounds just like a high-
pitched raspberry," UBC
fisheries professor Ben
Wilson told the New
Wilson and his colleagues
cannot be sure why herring
make this sound, but initial
research suggests that it
might explain the puzzle of
how shoals keep together
after dark.
Despite Availability of
Free Care
Patients continue to die from
untreated HIV despite the
availability of free health
care and drugs in some areas,
Microbiology and Immunology Prof. Wilfred Jefferies has according to research con-
found the cellular pathway that triggers immune response,   ducted   by   UBC   professor
Evan Wood.
"When somebody says they are
going to sequence all the bacteria in
a soil sample, well, that's rubbish,"
UBC microbiology and immunology professor emeritus Julian Davies
told The New York Times.
There is still debate about how
valuable it will be to reconstruct the
genomes of all members of a community. "What you get is a catalogue," Davies said. "You get
unnamed organisms. The question
is how can you tell what they do."
Fish Fart Not Just Hot Air
Biologists have linked a mysterious,
underwater farting sound to bubbles coming out of a herring's anus.
No fish had been known to emit
sound from its anus nor to be
capable of producing such a high-
pitched noise.
Wood and colleagues used
statistical tests to compare patients
who had received anti-HIV drugs
before death with those who had
died without ever receiving treatment. HIV care and antiretroviral
drugs are available free of charge in
Of the 1,094 patients who died
from an HIV-related cause, nearly a
third had never received treatment,
the authors report in The journal of
Infectious Diseases.
Even among those who received
treatment, only 28 percent of aboriginal people and 36 percent of
women received anti-HIV drugs at
least 75 percent of the time, the
report indicates.
Cultural barriers "will need a culturally driven and relevant
response," Wood told Reuters.  □
Dear Editor:
Ed. Note: The following letter concerning an article entitled
"University Town Continues to Grow" from UBC Reports
Oct. 2,2003 has been edited for length.
I don't think that any of us living in the faculty/staff corner of
Hawthorn Place (near the intersection of Thunderbird and
West Mall) are opposed to "including people from other parts
of the community." If Dr. Pavlich really believes this, then he
is very mistaken. If, however, he is engaged in his own form
of political rhetoric he is doing a disservice to faculty who
have made a commitment to live on campus and reduce the
environmental impact of this university.
I would suspect that there are few who would really challenge the difficulties of accessing the local housing market for
incoming faculty. For example, the least expensive family-size-
housing unit being provided in Hawthorn Lane that is targeted at faculty and staff would require a household income of at
least $110,000 per year That is far above the starting salary
for most faculty in arts and reasonably higher than starting
salaries in most other faculties. Of course, whether or not an
employer should be concerned about the housing needs of its
employees is a separate question altogether
One of the stated reasons (both publicly and in published
documents) of creating a 'university town,' is to reduce the
impact of commuter traffic. The GVRD has been insistent
that UBC take responsibility for the massive volume of single
occupant cars commuting out to UBC every morning and
returning home every evening. However, with housing priced
out of the reach of most faculty and staff the people who are
able to purchase housing here are far more likely to be single
car commuting off campus, not just to work but also for
shopping etc. One might also add that under the current
conditions the near campus commuting will likely increase as
children are ferried to and from school, short trips out for
shopping or entertainment in the evening are organized by
the growing on-campus community.
And finally, De Pavlich says, with what one might imagine
as some exasperation "we're not creating a monastery here."
How true. De Pavlich and his compatriots are creating
another modernist suburb designed in a way that will make it
hard to tell whether one is standing in a development on
Point Grey, Steveston, Maple Ridge, North Vancouver or
anywhere else that developers are in charge. What might
actually contribute to a richer learning, academic, and
research environment - in terms of innovative and environmentally friendly building design and grounds maintenance -
has been ignored in the race to fit things into the bottom line.
Charles Menzies
Hawthorn Lane resident
Director, Public Affairs
Scott Macrae  scott.macrae@ubc.ca
Paul Patterson  paul.patterson@ubc.ca
Design Director
Chris Dahl  chris.dahl@ubc.ca
Sharmini Thiagarajah  sharmini@exchange.ubc.ca
Cristina Calboreanu  mccalbor@exchange.ubc.ca
Michelle Cook michelle.cook@ubc.ca
Brian Lin  brian.lin@ubc.ca
Erica Smishek erica.smishek@ubc.ca
Hilary Thomson  hilary.thomson@ubc.ca
Cristina Calboreanu  mccalbor@exchange.ubc.ca
UBC Reports is published monthly by the UBC Public Affairs Office
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Lessons from The Pink Book
Law student prepares girls' guide to justice system . by erica smishek
UBC Law student Patricia Cochran
sees red when she thinks how poorly adolescent girls living in poverty
are treated in the criminal justice
She'd prefer to see pink.
Cochran    is    heading    up    the
UBC Taw student Patricia Cochran.
research and writing for The Fink
Book, a handbook designed to provide defence lawyers with the information they need to bring the best
defence for girls aged 12 to 18 under
the Youth Criminal justice Act and
protect the rights of girls in prison.
Another version, The Little Fink
Book, is also being prepared for
girls themselves.
"Young women's rights are often
overlooked and are not responded
to fairly by police, by the courts, not
by the correctional system,"
Cochran says. "I hope the books
will help change that."
The books are an initiative of
Justice for Girls, a
social justice organization that promotes
support, justice and
equality for adolescent girls who have
experienced violence
and live in poverty.
Cochran, now in
third-year law, began
doing pro bono work
for the group two
years ago, completing
legal research projects
and making presentations at workshops
and conferences on
behalf of the organization.
She and fellow law
student Kat Kinch are
collaborating   on  the
handbooks,       which
will  be readable collections   of  explanations  and  tips  about
legal issues, including human rights,
through every step of the criminal
justice process.
"Essentially, we're saying 'here's
the law, here's what we think about
the law, here's some background
and here's some advice,'" Cochran
explains. "We'll also be incorporating stories that are made up but are
related to real lives. This will per
sonalize issues and procedures in a
way so people can understand how
some obscure law can affect these
young women."
Justice for Girls, which is partly
funded by the Law Foundation of
B.C. and Status of Women Canada,
takes the feminist position that
young women in poverty are the
experts of their own experience. It
works to provide the support and
resources that girls need to act on
their own behalf in creating change
in their lives.
Cochran, who has a BA from
McGill University and an MA in
political science from the University
of Toronto, says the books adhere
to the same principle.
"We want lawyers to better
understand how to effectively communicate with these young women.
It's the responsibility of a lawyer
that their client actually understands what's going on and that
their client has to be the one to give
the lawyer instructions.
"Many girls don't realize what
their rights are in this regard.
Lawyers must explain the roles
clearly and put the decisions into
the hands of young women in terms
of whether to respond and how to
proceed through the system. We
need to put the power into these
young women's hands."
Justice For Girls has also been
working on a rights card, a basic
outline with tips on what to do if
approached by the authorities,
arrested, interrogated, asked to be
stripped searched, etc. that girls can
carry in their pockets. □
UBC Researchers Help Save Millions
for Health-Care Employers
A team of University of British
Columbia researchers has helped
B.C. health-care employers save
approximately $51 million in the
past two years, according to a
report recently released by the
Occupational Health and Safety
Agency for Healthcare (OHSAH).
"Our remarkable success is due
to a strong collaboration of union
and management and a unique
association with the research community," says Annalee Yassi,
OHSAH  director and  director of
interventions that include a guide
to reducing workplace violence,
programs to improve health and
safety in kitchens and bagless laundry systems.
"This group provides an important bridge between academic
research and real-life situations,"
says Chris Allnutt, Hospital
Employees' Union secretary-business manager. "OHSAH analyses
what works and what doesn't and
then   takes   those   theories   into
"We hope that further investment
will allow us to continue this
work," says Yassi, Canada Research
Chair in Transdisciplinary Health
Promotion. "Taking care of healthcare workers is absolutely necessary
if we want to provide quality patient
Jointly governed by health-care
employers and union representatives, OHSAH includes UBC
researchers in faculties ranging from
arts to applied science. The group
studies, designs and evaluates inter-
the       workplace       to       create
B.C.'s health-care sector accounts for more time lost from work than
any other provincial industry sector, according to the WCB's Statistics 2002.
interventions that have been shown ventions   and   recommends   health
to be effective." improvement strategies.
The report marks the end of a The    report    is    available    at
five-year mandate for the group. www.ohsah.bc.ca. □
UBC's      Institute      for
Promotion Research.
The report cites a drop of 28 per
cent in health-care industry injury
rates since 1998, the year OHSAH
was conceived, and a 38 per cent
drop in time lost due to injury since
1999. Without the decreases,
health-care employers would have
paid about $51 million more in
Workers' Compensation Board
(WCB) assessment rates over the
last two years, says Yassi.
B.C.'s health-care sector accounts
for more time lost from work than
any other provincial industry sector,
according to the WCB's Statistics
A key intervention has been the
use of ceiling lifts to move patients.
Following OHSAH research, the
provincial health ministry and
WCB invested $21 million in 2001
toward new bed and lifting devices.
Pilot studies at four sites showed
reduction in lifting injuries of up to
80 per cent. Health-care employers
and unions are implementing use of
the lifts province-wide.
OHSAH has also collaborated in
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Calling all
UBC Authors!
Are you the author/editor of a book, or the creator
of a video, cd, cd-rom, or electronic book published
between January 2003 and December 2003?
If so, we would like to hear from you so that you can
be included in the 14th Annual Reception.
The Reception, hosted by President Martha Piper
and University Librarian Catherine Quinlan,
will be held March 17,2004.
Ifyou are a UBC author, please contact
Margaret Friesen by January 7,2004.
Koerner Library, Room 218D
1958 Main Mall
The Library 4     I
.  C      REPORTS
How Many Species can We
Afford to Lose?
Researchers use new approach, by Michelle cook
Will we really be worse ofF when the
last giant panda disappears from the
earth? Does our own survival depend
on the fate of the mountain gorilla?
one species can have on an entire
ecosystem. Fifty years ago, disease had
reduced the population of wildebeests
on the plain to 100,000. Today, they
number 1.5 million. With their come-
< The whooping crane? The common
* house sparrow?
< The popular answer to all these
- questions would be 'yes.' The fact is
| we just don't know, says UBC zoology
< professor Anthony Sinclair who has
^ launched a project to study what real-
2 ly happens when a species gets
5 "knocked out" of one of the planet's
5 ecosystems.
- "One of the dogmas that our society has is that biodiversity plays an
important role in the stability of our
systems, but we haven't actually got
the evidence yet to support this," says
Sinclair. "It sounds nice. It sounds logical, but my own experience of seeing
so many species is that they can't all
have equally important roles. There
must be a huge number which don't
"We need to ask, 'does it matter?'
and it's important to recognize that we
don't know the answer."
With a worldwide environmental
movement fighting to protect thousands of plants, animals, insects and
birds on endangered species lists,
Sinclair knows it's a loaded question
but one he will keep asking with the
Biodiversity Knockout Experiment
Launched two years ago with a
back, Sinclair and others have been
able to track the effect on thousands
of other species of plants, insects and
animals and also on the climate in the
wildebeest's habitat. But nobody has
ever tried a controlled knock-out
For the BIOKO experiment,
researchers will first remove a key
species group from a controlled study
plot. They will then subject the plot to
a man-made disturbance. In the
Yukon pilot being undertaken by UBC
botany professor Roy Turkington and
student Jennie McLaren, groups of
native plants, legumes and fungi have
been removed from the study area and
fertilizer has been applied. The effects
of the species loss on the plot will be
monitored over three years.
It's an approach that's never been
tried before. In the past, researchers
have studied biodiversity by putting a
few species together in a controlled
environment, and extrapolating the
results to determine the effects on larger habitats. The knock-out experiment
starts at the opposite end of the scale
with thousands of species and systematically removes key groups.
If the Yukon pilot is successful,
plans are underway to conduct the
same experiment in many different
It's inevitable that, as we develop, we're taking up
more resources in the world which will cause more
species to go extinct.
pilot project in the Yukon, the
BIOKO's goal is to find out how the
loss of a certain species from an
ecosystem affects the system's ability
to cope.
"We want to find out whether losing a species prevents the system from
coping with the abuses humans subject the system to — abuses such as
introducing fertilizers, burning, trampling, and polluting it," Sinclair
"It's a fundamental problem of
human society. It's inevitable that, as
we develop, we're taking up more
resources in the world which will
cause more species to go extinct. The
question is how many species can we
afford to lose before we impair the
habitat that we live in and depend
After spending almost 40 years
studying large mammals, mostly on
the Serengeti Plain in his native
Tanzania, Sinclair has seen the effect
geographical environments such as
grasslands, savannah and tundra.
Sinclair says that Canada, with its
extreme environments ranging from
the Far North with no species to the
Prairies with a diversity of species, is
particularly suited to the BIOKO
The massive, worldwide initiative
will be run from UBC's Integrated
Biodiversity Laboratory, a new facility
for multidisciplinary research that will
be built with $33 million in funding
from the Canada Foundation for
Innovation and the B.C. Knowledge
Development Fund, in addition to
funding from UBC.
Once the lab is completed, in about
five years, Sinclair expects BIOKO to
swing into high geai; with a new generation of ecosystem specialists from
around the world involved in knockout research.
"This is a big idea, and a big experiment; it will take a lot of people, and
we can't do it all at once," Sinclair
explains. "So this is going to be done
bit by bit and when we get different
people trying different things, we'll
learn from that to build a more comprehensive experiment."
And if animal lovers were getting
nervous, rest assured there are no plans
to knock out any of the big predators
or beloved furry poster animals
— elephants, otters, orangutans
— that we've come to associate
with habitat loss or extinction.
Researchers   will   be   focusing
instead on insects, plants, fungi
and species like the nematode — a
hard working little organism that
ives in the soil decomposing dead
plant material and recycling nutrients
from it — because that's where they
suspect most of the real biodiversity
action is.
"If you knock  out mammals,  at  a  certain  scale,  it
doesn't mattei;" Sinclair says.
"In terms  of the way the
world functions, it probably
doesn't    matter    whether
we've got pandas or not.
They're  nice  and  furry,
appeal to us emotionally and esthetically
and  could  act  as
flagships   to   promote conservation, but
in terms  of how the
system works, it's probably not a big
"Whereas, if you knock out certain
bacteria from the soil, it's a big deal.
We don't know that — yet, but there's
an old adage that the answer lies in the
soil and it probably does."
For this reason, the project may not
capture the public's imagination and
attention the way the studies of specific species done by scientists like Diane
Fossey and Jane Goodall did 40 years
ago, but Sinclair says the issues that
BIOKO will be addressing are very
much on the 21st century agenda. □
United Way
As the 2003 UBC
United Way campaign wraps up this
month, volunteers
and donors continue
to support this growing campaign.
"With more than $350,000 raised we
have achieved 70 per cent of our
fundraising goal to support social programs and services in the Lower
Mainland," Eilis Courtney, one of this
year's chairs, notes. "With one month
left we are confident that we will reach
our goal."
About $15,000 of the money raised
has come from the special events that
have been going on around campus.
"Departments have really shone in
this area this year — from 50/50
draws to pancake breakfasts to traditional bake sales, students, faculty and
staff have really worked together,"
says Deborah Austin, Courtney's co-
chair . "These events have raised
money, but as important is the awareness they've raised about the need to
contribute to this community cause."
Both Austin and Courtney agree
that the campaign would not be as
successful as it is without the tremendous hard work and support of the
volunteers on campus. "They deserve
a huge thank you," Courtney says.
Donations will be accepted until the
end of the tax yeai; Dec. 31. For more
information on the campaign, photos
and mentions about volunteers
or how to donate, please visit
www.unitedway.ubc.ca or phone
604-822-8929. □
Certificate of Merit for the UBC
Master Teacher Award. He won
the Killam Teaching Prize for UBC
Medicine in 1996. He also
received the JCB Grant Award
from the Canadian Association
for Anatomy, Neurobiology and
Cell Biology. In 2001, he received
the President's Service Award.
He is involved with the YMCA
Youth Basketball Association
Program and was a board
membei; Community Unit, from
1975-1991. Slonecker also served
for two years as the acting vice
president of External Relations at
Slonecker has produced 19
publications, five book reviews,
16 special publications, one text
book and 25 abstracts.
It will not be easy to replace
Chuck Slonecker. In fact, the
university has decided that it will
take two people to take his place
in the ceremonies office.
Eilis Courtney will take over as
Director of Ceremonies and will
retain the administrative duties of
the role. As the former Associate
Director of Ceremonies she
oversaw functions that ranged
from the royal visit to pancake
breakfasts. Known for her
competence, humour and
unflappable nature, she has served
as UBC's resident expert on
ceremony and protocol for more
than 10 years.
The ceremonial role of the
function will now be split off into
a new position called University
Marshal. This prestigious position
is modeled on a similar title and
role at Harvard University.
UBC's first university marshal is
Nancy Hermiston who is also a
professor in the School of Music.
(see sidebar below)
Chuck Slonecker's legacy of
public service and years of loyal
devotion to UBC will undoubtedly be missed but unlikely to be
ever forgotten. □
UBC will never be the same. Part
of its charm, part of its grace, and
part of its history will be lost when
Chuck Sloneckei; former head of
the Anatomy Department and
Director of Ceremonies soon
retires. Throughout his 35 years at
UBC, Prof. Sloneckei; or Chuck as
he is fondly known by alumni,
colleagues and members of the
university community, has served
on an endless list of committees
along the way developing a
well-deserved reputation as the
epitome of the selfless public
As director of Ceremonies and
University Relations since 1990,
he has presided over countless
functions on the university's
behalf and is a familiar figure to
thousands of students at
Congregation. Last year he was
awarded the Individual
Exceptional Service Award for
being a long-time United Way
organizer and supporter. He was a
member of the UBC Alumni
Association Board of Directors
from 1993-1999.
Slonecker joined UBC as an
assistant professor in Dentistry in
1968 and became a full professor
in 1976. That year he received a
New Marshal
There's a new Marshal in town, a
new University Marshal to be
Music professor Nancy
Hermiston has been appointed
UBC's first university marshal.
Starting Jan. 1, she will take over
the ceremonial duties performed
for the last 13 years by the retiring
Director of Ceremonies, Chuck
"It's a great job. I love it," said
Prof. Hermiston. "I'm really going
to enjoy it."
Hermiston was appointed to
the U.B.C. faculty in 1995 as coordinator of the voice and opera
division. Her operatic career has
taken her throughout Canada, the
United States and Europe. Her
New York debut took place in
Carnegie Hall with Marilyn
Home and Mario Bernardi. Her
European debut led to a permanent engagement with the prestigious Niirnberg Opera. She has
held numerous appointments as
voice teachei; and as stage director
at the Meistersinger
Konservatorium, Niirnberg, and
the University of Toronto opera
and performance divisions.
Her Opera Ensemble, created
in 1995, has performed in Europe
five times and has begun an association with the Opera House in
Usti nad Labem, Czech Republic,
for regular summer performances
Music professor Nancy Hermiston
has been appointed UBC's first
university marshal.
there. They have also toured
British Columbia, Saskatchewan
and Ontario and collaborated
with Vancouver Opera, the
Vancouver Symphony and
various community groups.
This new role she will fill is
modeled after a similar position
at Harvard University. The
University Marshal that takes the
lead role at graduation ceremonies — selecting and directing
marshals and mace-bearers and
directing the Chancellors procession. The Marshal also acts as
MC at major university events
such as building openings, recognition events and the UBC annual general meeting. The Marshal
will always be a full-time UBC
faculty member appointed for a
five-year term. □ IC      REPORTS
2 0 0 3      I      5
What to Expect —
or Make That Forget —
When You Ye Expecting
Psychology research explores link between hormones
and memory, by erica smishek
Trek 2010 Gets a Face-Lift
A new vision for the future, by brian lin
Expectant mothers not-so-affec-
tionately call it "baby brain" — that
memory loss that strikes during preg-
in the male brain.
Galea's  research  with  rats  and
meadow voles, funded through the
Liisa Galea, associate professor of psychology at UBC.
nancy, especially in the third
trimestei; and leaves them wondering
where they've put their keys or
parked their car.
It's no laughing matter and it's not
their imagination. But it could be
their hormones.
Liisa Galea, an associate professor
of psychology at UBC, is studying
how estrogen levels affect learning
and memory. She says while people
blame fluctuating hormone levels for
all kinds of strange behaviours and
emotions, few women make the connection between their menstrual
cycle and their ability to think.
"Evidence shows that the ability
to orient position in the environment
is related to hormones," Galea
explains. "These spatial abilities
decline during the third trimester of
pregnancy and bounce back later
She knows of what she speaks.
Pointing out her office window to
the parking lot across UBC's West
Mall, Galea recounts her own inability to find her car on numerous occasions during her last weeks of pregnancy.
"I was supposed to pick up my
son at 5 p.m. and had 15 minutes to
get there," she says. "I was in tears in
the parking garage because I couldn't
remember where I left my car."
People need two kinds of memory
to find their cars at day's end.
Reference memory — long-term stable memory that does not change
from day-to-day — reminds us that
we always park in Lot One. Working
memory — which assimilates new
information that changes frequently
— allows us to recall the specific spot
in the lot.
Galea explains that medium levels
of estrogen, particularly estradiol,
assist with spatial working memory.
Estradiol levels are optimum during
menstruation, for example, so a
woman would find it easier to locate
her car during that particular time of
the month.
Levels are absent or extremely low
during menopause, however, and are
very high during ovulation or the last
trimester of pregnancy. These times
are associated with poorer spatial
ability, hence spatial working memory declines and finding that car gets
more difficult.
Women aren't alone in the battle.
Men have just as many estrogen
receptors in the brain as women and
testosterone is converted to estradiol
Natural Sciences and Engineering
Research Council of Canada,
explores how estradiol affects learning and memory and the brain. Does
it affect the architecture of the brain
and change of the shape of brain
cells? Does it regulate the birth of
new neurons in adulthood? And why
do estrogens (women produce three
different forms — estrone, estradiol
and estriol) seem to protect against
the detrimental effects of stress
caused by the release of the corticosteroid hormones?
"Having kids is a life-changing
experience," she says. "It's not until
you experience it that you see some of
the questions that arise. When I got
pregnant, I realized that there wasn't
a lot of work being done in this area."
While there have been anecdotal
reports of memory problems from
women in pregnancy and menopause,
studies from the scientific community
have been limited. Some have attributed weakened memory to iron-deficiency during pregnancy, others to
high levels of oxytocin, a natural hormone produced in women during
pregnancy and while nursing.
In the late 1990s, British
researchers scanned the brains of 10
moms-to-be during their last
trimesters and again a few months
after their babies were born, and
announced that brain cell volume
decreases during pregnancy, only to
plump up again sometime after delivery.
"It was a big splash in the media at
the time," Galea says. "But the problem was that researchers never did
baseline measurements. Their results
just lead to more questions. Could it
really mean that maybe the brain
grew? Does it mean that childbirth
makes the brain more efficient? Or is
it just that we have more to do once
we're mothers and have to become
better managers?" □
Trek 2000, UBC's strategic plan, is
undergoing a face-lift as the university re-examines its current vision and
looks forward to a landmark year for
British Columbia.
Tentatively titled Trek 2010, the
new strategic planning document is
gathering input from a wide range of
internal and external communities on
what UBC's long-term goals should
be for the rest of the decade. Ten
thousand copies of a discussion paper
and survey have been distributed on
and off campus. The survey is also
available online at
"2010 will be a significant year for
UBC and the province with the
Winter Olympics showcasing the best
we have to offer," says Herbert
Rosengarten, executive director of
the President's Office. "It's also a reasonable target for us to achieve a new
set of goals."
Published in 1998, Trek 2000 identified steps to advance the university
in five areas: people, learning,
research, community and internationalization. Supplemental pamphlets
and annual "report cards" were
added to assist members of the campus community implement the strategies from both the macro and micro
"Our grand vision in Trek 2000
was to become the best university in
Canada," explains Rosengarten,
widely regarded as the official keeper
of the Trek vision. "For Trek 2010,
we want to examine whether that
goal was too ambitious, or whether
we should extend our horizon and
compare ourselves to the best universities in the world.
"Meanwhile, we must remember
that first and foremost we are here to
serve our students," says
Rosengarten. "We need to be tuned
into the world around us while recognizing that our primary commitment
is to the citizens of British Columbia."
Since the publication of Trek 2000,
research funding has almost tripled
and student bursaries and scholarship
have increased significantly. The
aggressive recruitment and retention
of outstanding faculty has made UBC
an attractive place for top students in
both the undergraduate and graduate
levels. Much stronger links have been
forged with external and international communities through the Learning
Exchange, the downtown Robson
Square campus, and the International
Student Initiative; and the expansion
of the medical school will double the
number of medical students by 2010.
"We've made great progress and
achieved many of our original goals,"
says Rosengarten. "But in the area of
First Nations student recruitment, in
particular, we recognize the need to
devise new approaches and set realistic targets."
The "one thousand by 2000"
motion passed by the Senate in 1996
stipulated that UBC was to recruit
1,000 First Nations students by the
year 2000. The goal was incorporated
into Trek 2000 but remains one of the
difficult to
achieve — currently there
are approximately 500  self-identified aboriginal students at UBC.
As a result, Trek 2010 will seek
input specifically from aboriginal
students and communities through
the First Nations House of Learning
and through band counsellors.
"Right now, a reasonable goal looks
something like increasing First
Nations student enrolment by 10
per cent every year," says
Rosengarten, who adds that such a
strategy can better ensure continuous growth in aboriginal student
"Trek 2010 will be our guide
through dramatic changes in store
for UBC, including the creation of a
vibrant University Town, and the
development of the new Ike Barber
Learning Centre, which will provide
our students with cutting-edge learning technology," says Rosengarten.
"One of the biggest challenges
ahead is to improve the learning
environment despite constraints in
space and funding, and a good
strategic plan will definitely make
things easier.
"That's why we encourage everybody to participate in the survey and
tell us what they think is important
to UBC's future." □
Enough Tribbles for One Day
Mapping the Psychological Effects of Space and Polar Missions, by erica smishek
In the world of fiction, astronauts
and Polar explorers often go mad,
are overtaken by small, irresistibly
cute furry creatures, or get killed by
alien life forms or mysterious disease. The ending is rarely a happy
In this world, however, these
modern-day adventurers usually
face slightly more banal challenges
— post-mission career pursuits and
goals, relationship and family
issues, spiritual crisis.
organizational support personnel.
His wife, UBC Social Work and
Family Studies associate professor
Phyllis Johnson, will study the reactions of their families.
"It's clear if you look at the autobiographies of astronauts that having flown in space puts them on a
different track in life," says
Suedfeld. "Some stay in the space
program, some go into business,
some go into academia.
"But   a   lot   take   some   totally
these missions," he says. "And
much of the research has also
ignored the positive impact."
Suedfeld says the favourable
long-term psychological effects of
working in such secluded environments outweigh the occasional
undesirable short-term changes
(sleep disturbances, anxiety
attacks, concentration problems,
"There can be a real sense of
achievement for most of the partic-
There has been a drastic change in how astronauts have been viewed by the public just
as there was with Antarctica. At first, they were pioneers; they became very famous
and went on triumphal tours. But who is in the Antarctic now? Whom can you name?
Yet no one can deny that the lives
of these men and women are a little
less ordinary than many and that
weeks or months isolated in space
or at polar research stations has an
impact on them, their colleagues
and their families.
Peter Suedfeld, professor emeritus of psychology at UBC, has
embarked on a four-year study to
determine exactly what that impact
is. In the first behavioural science
contract awarded by the Canadian
Space Agency, Suedfeld will
research the values, motivations,
problem-solving approaches, emotional reactions and spiritual experiences of participants before, during and after polar and space missions as well as the reactions of their
unpredictable paths. Some become
artists [Alan Bean] or writers
["Buzz" Aldrin]; one, James Irwin,
spent the rest of his life looking for
Noah's Ark."
Suedfeld has investigated the psychological effects of physical isolation and sensory deprivation in
polar regions since the mid-1980s.
He made six trips to the High
Arctic, studying staff at weather stations and directing two summer
research stations, and conducted
three research sessions in the
Antarctic — two at the U.S.
McMurdo research station and one
aboard an Argentine ship.
"There isn't that much knowledge about what has to be done to
minimize  the  negative   impact   of
ipants on these missions. And there
is a real sense of awe at the
grandeur of the environment
they're in," he says.
"It often makes people reorganize their priorities. And it can give
them a profound feeling of hope,
optimism and love."
Suedfeld will compare the 40-
year span of manned space flight
with early Antarctic explorations.
Specifically, he and Johnson will do
a thematic content analysis of the
materials — diaries, letters, journals, interviews, autobiographies,
etc. — that have been written or
recorded by participants, support
personnel and family members on
missions sponsored from various
continued on page 6 6       |       UBC      REPORTS      |       DECEMBER     4,      2 O O 3
North Campus
North Campus Draft Neighbourhood Plan
UBC has prepared a Draft Neighbourhood Plan for the North Campus area.
North Campus is located north of Northwest Marine Drive and is surrounded by Pacific
Spirit Regional Park. The area includes lands from Green College to Norman MacKenzie
Attend the following Public Meeting and give us your feedback.
Monday, January 12, 2004 @ 7:00 pm in the Asian Centre Auditorium, 1871 West Mall.
Parking is available in the adjacent Fraser River Parkade.
Your group can request a special meeting before December 31 by contacting the
University Town inquiry line at 604.822.6400 or by emailing info.universitytown@ubc.ca
For a map showing the location of the Asian Centre go to:
www.planning.ubc.ca/wayfinding/Finding/dbase.html and enter "Asian Centre" or cai
(604) 822-6400 for more information.
Background and information: www.universitytown.ubc.ca
Linda Moore, Associate Director
External Affairs, University Town
Tel: 604.822.6400
Fax:        604.822.8102
email:    info.universitytown@ubc.ca
UBC Public Affairs has opened both a radio and TV studio on campus
where you can do live interviews with local, national and internationa
media outlets.
To learn more about being a UBC expert, call us at 604.822.2064 and
visit our web site at www.publicaffairs.ubc.ca/experts/signup
Unspoken Epidemic
continued from page 1
"These people are paying the price for a
job that needs to get done," says Kuhl.
As a physician, Kuhl is well aware of
how health-care professionals are often
regarded as heroic or superhuman and
unaffected by the trauma they witness.
"Denying or trivializing feelings and
leaving your personal life at home
becomes a matter of pride — but
psychologically it's not possible."
The phenomenon is also seen in
military personnel who witness atrocities,
torture and death. Marv Westwood has
worked extensively with veterans and
Canadian peacekeepers suffering from
stress reactions to trauma. Some of the
counselling interventions he has used,
such as guided autobiography and
therapeutic re-enactment, may also
be useful for those suffering vicarious
Maria Arvay, a specialist in the effects
of trauma, has conducted a national survey on vicarious trauma in Canada as
well as a narrative study on trauma
counsellors' experience of the condition.
Funding for the workshop is provided
by the PWIAS and UBC's Office of the
Vice-president, Research. □
Enough Tribbles
continued from page 5
"There has been a drastic change in how
astronauts have been viewed by the public
just as there was with Antarctica. At first,
they were pioneers; they became very
famous and went on triumphal tours. But
who is in the Antarctic now? Whom can
you name? The public doesn't know
what's going on down there.
"It's the same thing with astronauts.
We knew those on the first Apollo missions. But who were the last 10 or 20 people to go into space? People will know the
names if there was a disaster but we don't
know the average working astronaut.
"I'm curious how this change in adulation and fame affects the explorers and
astronauts themselves."
Suedfeld's previous research has included studies in political, environmental,
social, health and cognitive psychology as
well as personality. With a general focus
on how people cope with and adapt to
demanding, challenging and stressful
experiences, he has completed archival
studies of decision-making during international and personal crises, participant
observation and field studies in polar stations, and interviews with Holocaust survivors, prisoners in solitary confinement,
astronauts and polar explorers.
He says the new study won't help with
the selection process for future space missions but instead will better prepare participants, their families and the organizational support staff for the missions and
provide support after the fact.
"So few psychologists are involved in
this field — yet the issues are applicable to
the rest ofthe world," Suedfeld says. "It is
a great research opportunity and I hope
this will lead to more behavioural science
research in a space context by
Canadians." □
A great selecb'on of Christmas
gifts 81 gardening books.
Fresh foliage wreaths and
,'£j& ubcbotanicalgarden
H    & centre for plant research
baskets made by the
Friends ofthe Garden
(available from Nov. 26th).
6804 SW Marine Dr.,
Vancouver, BC
Open 10am - 4:30pm daily.
Phone: 604-822-4529
Ample parking.
You probably wouldn't call it a balcony. Similarly, if you'd like
the space of a second bedroom, but don't need the bedroom,
it'd be up to you to call it what you like. Study. Entertainment
Room. Guest Room. It's your home. Use it, and name it, however you choose. So, what's labeled as a study could become a
wine cellar, or a tech room. But whatever you call it, there are
two names that you won't want to change -Chancellor House
and West Point Grey.
And with over 70% of the homes sold, you'll want to act
soon or you'll just have to call it gone. Remaining homes are
priced from $439,900.
Stop by our Discovery Centre at 1715 Theology Mall
(at Chancellor Blvd)
Open noon til 5pm daily (except Fridays)
or call 604.228.8100
IIMMPr I* ■ ■■    I   MHWh
2 0 0 3      I      7
A New Way to Search for Diamonds in the Rough
Retiring Within 5 Years?
Breaking new ground
Thanks to an invitation to study an
unusual deposit of kimberlite in Canada's
Northwest Territories, UBC researchers
have discovered a new, cost-effective way
to help diamond mining companies search
for the valuable minerals and develop
mine operations.
Kimberlite is a rare type of rock
that sometimes, but not always, contains
While their findings may be new,
researchers Ron Clowes and Phil
Hammer used an existing method of
underground exploration — seismic
reflection — that is commonly used by the
petroleum industry to produce subsurface
images but until now, has not been considered effective for finding diamonds.
"There were a lot of unknowns from a
research point of view and we wanted to
answer two questions," says Hammei; a
research associate in the Dept. of Earth
and Ocean Sciences. "Is seismic reflection
a cost-effective way to explore for shallow
UBC researchers used vibroseis trucks to help them 'map' kimberlite fields
in Canada's Northwest Territories.
The problem was that the kimberlite at
Snap Lake is unlike most of the world's
other kimberlite deposits.
Kimberlite formations are created
when kimberlite magma travels rapidly to
the earth's surface in massive explosive
eruptions. The eruptions typically form
depths we wanted to look at — depths
ranging from near the surface down to
1,500 metres, and you would not normally be able to see it without extremely high
frequencies which are quickly absorbed
with depth."
With funding from the two companies
In a business where it can cost up to $300,000 to drill one sample hole to reach
certain types of kimberlite deposits, mining companies want to know as much as
possible about a mineral deposit before breaking the earth's surface.
kimberlite dykes and sills in a hard rock
environment like the Northwest
Territories, and can seismic reflection produce images of the kimberlite that would
be useful for mine planning?"
In a business where it can cost up to
$300,000 to drill one sample hole to reach
certain types of kimberlite deposits, mining companies want to know as much as
possible about a mineral deposit before
breaking the earth's surface. Hammer
says the work done at UBC proved seismic
reflection could be a very good exploration tool for some kimberlite structures.
"The results suggest that we can use it
to find the thin, kimberlite sheets at depths
of more than 1,000 metres. In addition,
the technique can show where kimberlite
sheets are really complex. That is of interest to mining companies because it's the
complex areas that are going to cost them
extra money to mine."
Hammer and Clowes became involved
in Canada's diamond hunting race in
1999 when Clowes was approached by
Vancouver-based company, Diamondex
Resources Ltd. A professor of earth and
ocean sciences and director of Lithoprobe,
a 20-year national earth sciences research
project, Clowes has been working with
hundreds of geosciences researchers to
explore Canada's geological history,
including the development of seismic
reflection technologies needed to see what
lies beneath the country's surface.
Diamondex Resources was interested
in whether seismic reflection could be used
to explore a field of kimberlite at Snap
Lake. Seismic reflection, like sonai; uses
sound waves to "map" subsurface terrain.
From previous geology work, the company already knew that the Snap Lake kimberlite, located 100 km south of the rich
kimberlite deposits of Lac de Gras where
the Ekati and Diavik diamond mines now
operate, contained high-quality diamonds.
carrot-shaped pipes with surface diameters hundreds of metres wide that taper
down into the earth for thousands of
metres. Diamonds lie buried in these long,
vertical pipes.
Unlike the more common vertical
pipes, the Snap Lake kimberlite deposit is
a thin, flat-lying sheet, two to three metres
thick, spread out over 25 square kilometres. It gently dips from the surface to
depths of 1,300 metres or more. It also
feathers, in places, into multiple strands.
The kimberlite's unusual structure
made it difficult to detect with traditional
exploration methods such as magnetic
and electromagnetic surveys done from
the air Without more specific information
about the type of deposit, drilling over
such a vast area would be prohibitively
expensive, and mapping the sheet for
mine development purposes would be
difficult. Diamondex Resources, along
with international diamond giant
DeBeers, which owns 70 per cent of the
Snap Lake property through its Canadian
subsidiary, needed to find a different way
to gather detailed data. The companies
asked Clowes for help.
"Knowing what we've been able to
achieve with helping base metal companies in applying seismic reflection technologies to exploration, they wondered
whether this method would be feasible at
Snap Lake," Clowes says, adding that, at
first, even he was sceptical.
"Seismic reflection techniques are well
suited for mapping sub-horizontal structures so kimberlite dykes and sills have the
potential to be good seismic targets,"
Clowes explains. "But I didn't know
whether the technique would work at
Snap Lake. If you took a straight rule-of-
thumb analysis, it shouldn't work because
the kimberlite is so thin relative to the
and a collaborative research grant from the
Natural Sciences and Engineering
Research Council of Canada, Clowes and
Hammer first ran a computer-based feasibility study using data taken from drill hole
samples from the site. Based on these
results, they headed into the field in April
2001 to see if they could use seismic
reflection to map the underground kimberlite field beneath the tundra and the icy
surface of Snap Lake.
With more than 800 tiny geophones
planted along a straight line in the frozen
ground to pick up subsurface sound
waves, the researchers ran seismic surveys
using two methods to produce vibrations
— explosive charges and vibroseis, a way
of pounding the earth with a device
mounted on a pickup-truck-sized vehicle.
The results surprised them. Emerging from
the data was a striking image of the kimberlite curving deep down into the earth.
"We thought we'd probably have success at shallower depths, but we imaged
the kimberlite to well over 1,500 metres
and that was very exciting and rewarding," Hammer says.
The companies that sponsored the
research are also pleased with the results.
Diamondex has since carried out a second
successful survey using vibroseis. DeBeers
has plans to begin mining the property,
and has consulted with Clowes and
Hammer about running marine seismic
surveys on Snap Lake with the goal of further identifying the kimberlite's characteristics. The company has indicated that it
wants to continue seismic exploration
"If a 2D marine survey is successful,
they can also apply this technique in
3D fashion, and that's what they're
really interested in — mapping in 3D,"
Clowes says. □
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www.mediagroup.ubc.ca .  C      REPORTS      |       DECEMBER     4,      2 O O 3
9CICM1TITIC      Fiihir Scientific Fund
Materialising Dreams: Invitation for Proposals
The UBC Campus Sustai natality Office recognizes that when
it comes to finding innovative ideas, our university
community is the best place to look. We want to help nuke
new sustainability initiatives a reality. We are inviting
everyone with innovative and creative ideas to strengthen
campus suslainability to submit his or her proposal.
Thr FjjrKT Scientific Fund supports initiatives thai enhance
suitdirwbility al UBC, The furtd is generously ^upporicd by
fhher Scientific Canada, arte of the largest suppliers of
sclenriric supplies and equipmenT to UBC. Appioxinutply
SJS.tMD dollars ar** available fen winning proposals this year.
In order to be considered proposals should:
1.Strengthen sustainability at UBC.
2. Benefit the UBC scientific community who are the main
users of Fisher Scientific products.
3. Be within the range oF SS.OOO to S25.OO0
Few mote information and application
forms please visit
The Faculty of Medicine, University of British Columbia invites
applications and nominations forthe position of Head of the
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.
The Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology enjoys a
distinguished record ofachievement. We seek an academic leader
to be responsible for further directing anddeveloping the research
and teaching programs of the Department. The Department has
17full-time faculty members and attracts strong external research
support. The successfulcandidate should have a proven record of
scholarly achievement, a strong researchbackground, a commitment
to medical, undergraduate and graduate education and the ability
toencourage and develop interdisciplinary initiatives. Anticipated
start date will be July 1, 2004.Academic rank and salary will be
commensurate with experience and qualifications.
The University of British Columbia hires on the basis of merit and
is committed to employmentequity. We encourage all qualified persons
to apply; however, Canadians and permanentresidents of Canada will
be given priority.
Applications, accompanied by a detailed curriculum vitae and names
of three references, should be directed by December 31, 2003 to:
Dr. Gavin C.E. Stuart, Dean, Faculty of Medicine,
University of British Columbia,
Room 317, Instructional Resources Centre,
2194 Health Sciences Mall,
Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z3.
Two UBC Professors Emeriti have been Awarded France's
Highest Honour.
Dr. Chuni Roy, clinical professor emeritus of psychiatry, and
Dr. Victor Gomel, professor emeritus, obstetrics and gynecology, have been named Chevalier de l'Ordre de la Legion
Created in 1802 by Napoleon Bonaparte, the Legion of
Honour is the highest award given by the French Republic for
outstanding service to France.
Roy, who joined UBC in 1972, pioneered the treatment of
psychiatrically ill prisoners in Canada. He served as medical
director of a maximum-security psychiatric prison hospital in
Abbotsford, B.C., where medical graduates were trained in a
postgraduate diploma course in penitentiary medicine that
Roy developed in collaboration with the University of Paris.
Founder of the International Council of Prison Medical
Services   based   in   Paris,   Roy   launched   an   international
campaign for the ethical treatment of prisoners.   Roy is also
honorary consul of the French-speaking West African nation    Victor Gomel earns France's highest honour.
of Burkina Faso.
Gomel is an expert in gynecologic surgery and reproductive
medicine. He has trained French gynecologists for more than
20 years and is planning a French national education and research centre on birthing.
Gomel joined UBC in 1964 and introduced many surgical techniques to Canada such as laparoscopy
and hysteroscopy. Described as an international superstar of microsurgery, he has offered international
workshops in microsurgical techniques in gynecology for almost 30 years. He has also contributed significantly to knowledge of female reproductive physiology.
He developed an in vitro fertilization (IVF) program in UBC's Dept. of Obstetrics and Gynecology that
in 1983 was successful in delivering Canada's first IVF baby.
The awards will be presented in Paris.
UBC Professor Emeritus Awarded Order ofthe Rising Sun of Japan
John F. Howes, UBC professor emeritus of Asian Studies, has been awarded the Order of the Rising Sun
of Japan in recognition of his service and dedication to facilitate understanding between Canada and
Japan. The award is one Japan's most prestigious honours.
According to the Consulate General of Japan, Howes — who first studied and worked in Japan in the
1940s — actively found ways to connect with local communities and academic organizations bridging
Japan and the West. His practical approach to teaching and enthusiasm influenced generations of students.
Howes specializes in Christianity in Japan, the modernization of Japan and the study of two influential
thinkers of the modern era, Uchimura Kanzo and Nitobe Inazo.
New Head for Island Medical Program
Dr. Oscar Casiro has been appointed associate dean of the Island Medical Program (IMP), part of UBC's
Faculty of Medicine expansion.
Educated in Argentina, Casiro immigrated to Canada in 1980 and completed training in pediatrics and
neonatology at the University of Manitoba. He has worked at the Health Sciences Centre there since 1985
and has been associate dean of undergraduate medical education at the University of Manitoba since 1999.
His research interests include the long-term outcomes of high-risk premature infants and the effects of
substance abuse during pregnancy.
Casiro will be based at the University of Victoria and will also serve as head of the division of medical
sciences. He will assume his responsibilities in January, 2004.
The IMP, along with the Northern Medical Program at the University of Northern B.C., are partner programs in the Faculty of Medicine's expansion that will double the number of undergraduate medical student spaces by 2010. □
UBC Development Permit Board
The Development Permit Board meets on the third Wednesday of every month at
5 p.m. to consider development applications for non-institutional development on
campus lands, unless there are no applications to consider. The public is invited to
attend meetings. Please visit the Campus & Community Planning website for
information on upcoming meeting dates and locations.
The December Development Permit Board will convene one week early
on account ofthe holiday season:
Date: Wednesday, December 10, 2003
Time: 5:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Location: Peter Wall Institute, 6331 Crescent Road, Lg. Conference Rm.
Current development applications are posted on our website at:
Ifyou have questions contact:
Jim Carruthers, Manager Development Services
Tel: (604) 822-0469, Email: jimcarruthers@ubc.ca
Karly Henney, Planning Assistant
Tel: (604) 822-6930, Email: karly.henney(S),ubc.ca.
Campus & Community Planning
A Good Read
With the holiday season approaching, those with young ones on their
gift lists might want to consider a
remarkable children's book with an
interesting UBC link.
Dancing Elephants and Floating
Continents (Key Porter Books,
2003, $24.95) tells the story of how
the earth was formed. Complete
with continents that crash and
crush, oceans that vanish and reappear and mountain ranges that rise
and crumble, it's an adventure story
sure to thrill budding geologists that
was written using data from the
Lithoprobe project, Canada's
largest  and   longest-lived  national
earth sciences research project. Since 1984, more than 800 university,
government and industry scientists have been studying and probing the
earth's crust to understand the geological evolution of Canada.
And the UBC link? Lithoprobe's director is Prof. Ron Clowes,
a geophysicist and professor in the Earth and Ocean Sciences Dept. who
helped author John Wilson with the book's content and illustrations. □
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