Campus Digest, May 24

Huron celebrates theology convocation


Photo courtesy of Huron University College

Huron University College presented the Rev. Susan Johnson, National Bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada, an honorary doctor of divinity degree (jure dignitatis) at the school’s theology convocation on May 10. Joining the celebration were, from left, the Rev. William J. Danaher Jr., Dean of Theology (Huron); Alan Weedon, Western vice-provost (academic planning, policy and faculty); the Rt. Rev. Terrance Dance, Bishop of Norfolk (Diocese of Huron); Johnson; the Rt. Rev. Robert Bennett, Bishop of Huron (Diocese of Huron); Stephen McClatchie, Huron principal; and John Thorp, (Esquire Bedel), Western Philosophy professor.

Reid awarded Grand Challenge

Western professor Dr. Gregor Reid and his Lawson Health Research Institute team have been named Grand Challenges Explorations winners, an initiative funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The researchers, one of only three Canadian recipients, are the first London, Ont.-based team ever to receive funding from the foundation.

The project will study the impact of probiotic yogurt mixed with a nutrient-rich plant called Moringa on the health outcomes of pregnant women and their children. Reid’s work focuses on the benefits of bacteria in promoting nutrition and disease prevention. This study will investigate if those benefits can pass from mothers to their children. It will be based out of a newly opened yogurt kitchen in Mwanza, Tanzania, and will be part of the Western Heads East program.

Dawes honoured for bargaining dedication

Department of Mathematics professor emeritus Mike Dawes recently received the Donald C. Savage Award of the Canadian Association of University Teachers, at the group’s spring council meeting. Dawes is the eighth recipient of the award, recognizing outstanding achievements in the promotion of collective bargaining in Canadian universities and colleges, in its 15 years of existence.

Ivey students take EDC scholarships

Richard Ivey School of Business students Connor Lyons and Jiemi Gao were named among 30 Export Development Canada scholarship winners.

Up to 30 scholarships, worth $4,000 each, are awarded annually to university or college students interested in international business, with up to five additional scholarships for students in programs which combine business with environmental or sustainability studies.

Archibald hailed for service to industry

Richard Ivey School of Business professor emeritus T. Ross Archibald recently received the 2012 Frank S. Capon Distinguished Service Award from Financial Executives International Canada (FEI Canada), the professional association for senior financial executives.

Archibald, a member of FEI Canada’s Southwestern Ontario Chapter, holds a BA (Honours) from Western as well as an MBA and PhD from the University of Chicago.

Graphic centre moves from Ivey

After close to 40 years of operation in the Richard Ivey School of Business, the Ivey Copy Centre run by Graphic Services will be moving out of the building as the business school moves to its new location. Ivey Copy Centre clients will continue to have all their needs met as the copy centre operation will be amalgamated into the Graphic Services Copy Centre located in the Graphic Services Building, effective June 1.

Suncor Chair in Energy Policy named

The Richard Ivey School of Business announced May 9 a $1.125-million commitment by the Suncor Energy Foundation to establish and support the Suncor Chair in Energy Policy at Ivey. The new chair will be held by professor Guy Holburn, director of Energy@Ivey, and professor of Business, Economics and Public Policy. The gift will also support undergraduate student awards, program outreach, case-writing and research.

Adult learners honoured with awards

Thirteen learners from a variety of educational institutions and agencies, including four from Western, received Adult Learner Awards from the London Council for Adult Education on May 10. These awards recognize the benefits of adult learning in the lives of these individuals. Western’s winners included:


Carly Ekstein’s passion for learning was evident as she entered the inaugural year of the post-degree Diploma in Marketing; not only was she part of the first cohort of the program, she stepped up as a leader and volunteered to be a student ambassador. She excelled both in the classroom and beyond, and always with a bright smile. She enrolled in two professional-development courses while working full-time during the practicum component of her diploma. She graduates this June;


Visar Berisha, who just completed his first year at Western in the Faculty of Science, arrived in Canada at 15 in 1999 as a refugee from Kosovo. In 2008, he graduated from Trios College as a pharmacy technician and began to work in the field. From this work experience, Berisha learned he wanted to go to university to become a pharmacist, but his high school grades were not competitive enough to enter university. He then went to community college, earning straight A’s.  At the same time, his wife was pregnant and gave birth during midterms to their now-2-year-old son. Berisha continued working on the side to pay for school (and managed to do so without borrowing a single penny). He applied to Western, and got accepted for the Biological and Medical Sciences program;


Chuck Bourgeois began his university studies at Western in 1969. He was working full time and happily married to Dorothy, with whom he was raising five girls between ages 1 and 8. With tuition increasing and consumed with raising a family, Bourgeois placed his university studies on the back burner in 1976. In 2005, at the age of 69, still happily married and having successfully raised those five girls, he returned to Western in retirement to finish his bachelor of arts degree. Bourgeois’ daughter, Kelly, had decided to do a degree herself as a mature student, and she encouraged her father to complete his own degree;


Praval Vatsya, 2012 SAGE (Society for Mature Students) Student of the Year, struggled with finding a program which suits him. Having attended two high schools, five universities and one college in addition to interning at a sixth university in the United States, his academic pattern has been turbulent. Returning to university as a mature student, Vatsya has found a home that “fits” at Western studying business and political science in the Faculty of Social Science.

President creates scholarship

Western president Amit Chakma, along with his wife Meena, have created a Global Opportunities Award, awarded to any student beyond their first year for exchange, study-abroad, international community service or other university-led international learning experience. The $1,000 award, matched annually by the university, will create one $2,000 or two $1,000 awards, and be based on academic achievement, cost of experience, proposed length of study and a short student statement outlining how he/she will be an effective ambassador for Western.