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(October 19, 2000, Gazette)

Ground breaking ceremony for The Rooms
The official ground-breaking ceremony to launch construction of The Rooms was held Oct. 4 in St. John’s. The $40 million culture and heritage centre will be built in the historic district of downtown St. John’s. When completed, the facility will house the Newfoundland Museum, the Provincial Archives of Newfoundland and Labrador and the Art Gallery of Newfoundland and Labrador.

“The creation of this facility is an important step socially for the preservation of this province’s cultural heritage,” said Premier Brian Tobin. “The Rooms will serve to tell our stories, to define who we are as a people and to celebrate our uniqueness. The entire arts and heritage community share in the work of preserving and presenting the culture of Newfoundland and Labrador, and I thank them for their support and participation in bringing The Rooms to reality.”

When completed, the new building will offer over 150,000 square feet of exhibition space, meeting rooms, lecture halls, conservation labs and a state-of-the-art multi-media centre. Other amenities include a full-service dining room and gift shop. The new space will permit the three founding institutions to offer a full range of public programming and the opportunity to participate in national and international tours of travelling exhibits and art collections which are not possible in their current locations.

Basketball hits the road
Memorial’s men’s basketball Sea-Hawks embarked on their community outreach program last weekend, playing inter-squad games at St. Catherine’s Oct. 13, and Trepassey and Placentia on Oct. 14. “The games went very well and we had great turn outs at all games,” said head coach Todd Aughey.

The team invited children from each community to come out and “shoot around” with the Sea-Hawks players prior to each game, conducted a players’ clinic in Trepassey on Saturday, and attended high school games in advance of their tip-off time.

“It is one small way that our players are making a difference in the community,” said Mr. Aughey.

Meanwhile, the Sea-Hawks women’s team played an exhibition game against the Gonzaga High School men’s team, eking out an 85-83 win in overtime. Maureen Murrin scored a buzzer beater to record the final two for MUN. She rebounded the ball when Jennie Browne missed her shot. Ms. Murrin had nine points and seven rebounds in the game. Eight women had eight or more points in the game with Ann Murrin leading the way with 14 points. Lead scorer for Gonzaga was Ian Hennebury with 20 points.

The Lady Sea-Hawks have a 2-0 record in exhibition action and travel to Ontario on Oct. 24 to play York University for two games before the Laurentian Tournament Oct. 27-29.

Millions for new aquaculture research
The AquaNet board of directors announced funding on Sept. 27 for 27 innovative aquaculture research projects. The approval of research funds follows the July 18 announcement by Dr. Gilbert Normand, secretary of state for science, research and development, of the Canadian government’s investment of $14.4 million over four years in AquaNet.

“The 27 research projects from the three research themes, of animal production, environmental integrity and socio-economic aspects, will receive funds totalling $1.8 million in the first year,” said Dr. William Driedzic, scientific director of AquaNet and director of Memorial’s Ocean Sciences Centre. “In 2000-01, AquaNet research will involve 21 industry partners, 10 government and other agencies, and 73 researchers from 16 universities. The initial research projects are eligible for a further $6.4 million in 2001-02 and 2002-03.

“There will be a competition this fall amongst Canadian university researchers and their partners for a further $2.0 million of aquaculture research funding.”

By the end of 2003, AquaNet will have contributed $10.2 million into innovative aquaculture research in Canada. AquaNet was initially funded from 1999 to 2003 and will undergo a mid-term review in 2002 for additional funding til 2006.

AquaNet is Canada’s newest federal Network of Centres of Excellence (NCE). NCEs are unique partnerships among industry, universities, and government designed to develop the economy and improve the quality of life for Canadians. These nation-wide networks connect excellent research with industrial know-how and practical investment. There are 17 other NCEs in fields such as forestry, robotics, tele-learning, arthritis and AIDS research.

AquaNet’s mission is to position the Canadian aquaculture industry for the future by increasing the efficiency of aquaculture production through species diversification, biotechnology, environmental sustainability and training of highly qualified personnel, while simultaneously addressing the legal, political and social issues which historically have affected the industry.

For further information on AquaNet, access the AquaNet Web site at www.aquanet.mun.ca

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