Saturday, 28 September 2013

Quality... and Quantity

As many of you know, these are challenging times at the University of Alberta due to financial matters. Some people obsess over this---the sky is falling. However, this hides the truth about the Faculty of Science. We have a great team of professors, staff, and students. I don’t need to justify this; actions speak louder than words. At Thursday September 19’s  Celebrate! Teaching. Learning. Research” event, the strength of the Faculty of Science was on display for all to see. A total of 19 people received recognition (more than any other Faculty), and it was my privilege to be on stage to congratulate each of the winners:

Royal Society of Canada: James Pinfold (Physics) and Raymond Egerton (Physics). This is national recognition for a distinguished career.
J. Gordon Kaplan Award for Excellence in Research: Roderick Wasylishen (Chemistry). Each year, one University of Alberta researcher gets singled out for having made important research contributions.
Killam Professor: Dennis Hall (Chemistry). This is recognition for his fundamental work that has led to “the creation of new compounds that are currently in preclinical development for treating cancer.”
Sloan Research Fellowship: Julianne Gibbs-Davis (Chemistry) and John Davis (Physics). Yes, a husband and wife team. They each applied separately and were both successful. Although they work in separate areas, they are competitive with their colleagues and with each other.

The following award titles say it all.
William Hardy Alexander Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching: Enver Osmanagic (Mathematical and Statistical Sciences).
Rutherford Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching: Alex Brown (Chemistry).
Excellence in Graduate Teaching: Robert Campbell (Chemistry).

Support Staff
Research Enhancement Award: Charlene Nielsen (Biological Sciences), awarded to a staff member who consistently makes contributions to research success in their Department.

Student Achievement
Rhodes Scholarship: Megan Engel. A Rhodes scholarship? How cool is that!
Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship: Tiago Simoes (Biological Sciences) and Jody Reimer (Mathematical and Statistical Sciences). A prestigious national award.

Awards for superior undergraduate academic achievement:
Chancellor’s Citation: Rebecca Burchett and Taylor Rocque.
BMO Financial Group Citation: Grace Bellerose.
President’s Citation:  Deepan Hazra, Adam Mullan, and Spence Wilkie.

It is wonderful to step back from the daily grind and reflect on the good things that the Faculty of Science team is accomplishing. And there is much more to come…