The MUN all years’ reunion, Havin’ a time was held in early August, and we welcomed home departmental alumni and friends to an open house from 10 -1 on Friday, August 10th. We had some displays of current work, pictures past and present, and a few prizes to share. The turnout wasn’t as large as we had hoped, but we had people from many different years, and it was nice to see familiar faces here again. Surprise visitors were Willie and Evelyn Davidson, former long-time employees now living in BC, who happened to be in town and decided to drop by and see us.
Our advising and general offices were busy with student enquiries as registration for Fall 2012 continued through the month. By the end of the regular registration period, our undergraduate numbers were down slightly from last year. There were several changes in course offerings this year due to sabbatical leaves so that would affect fall numbers; perhaps winter will see an increase. Our number of graduate students did increase over last fall, a pattern which we hope will continue.
Another successful Biochemistry Summer Student Symposium was held on August 17th. The 2nd annual symposium showcased the work of graduate students with oral presentations and undergraduate students with poster presentations. Dr. George van der Merwe from the University of Guelph was the keynote speaker. All the presentations were excellent and stimulated a great deal of interesting scientific discussions and interactions throughout the day. Congratulations to all participants for a great showing!
Roofing work continued throughout August in sections of Blocks A and D, Science Building (General Office and Nursing Lab wings). Schedules had to be rearranged as fumehoods were shutdown to accommodate this work. This was a needed sacrifice for a worthy cause; no one likes a leaky roof.
Jenny John returned to the department in mid-August as a research assistant in Dr. Shahidi’s lab. Jenny has worked with us intermittently over the last several years and it’s nice to see her back again.
As part of our ongoing exchange agreement with Germany’s Mannheim University of Applied Sciences, visiting undergraduate student Marcus Elstner joined the Christian lab this month. He will be here for five months in order to complete a research project that’s part of his degree program at home.
The closing date for applications for the headship position was August 1st. The search committee will be busy this fall choosing candidates to interview. Good luck as you complete this important task.