Dr. Lynne Phillips, Dean of Arts
So April is almost over, exams are done and Convocation is on the horizon. In early April I made a quick trip to London, England, for the annual London Affinity dinner that brings together Memorial alumni and friends for a celebration in the grand surrounds of the Palace of Westminster. It was wonderful to meet Memorial arts alumni Dr. Julia Laite (who is now teaching history at the University of London) and my colleague Dr. Sally Cole, who is currently affiliated with the University of Geneva. Scott McLean, the historian and director of Queen’s University’s Bader International Study Centre (their equivalent of our Harlow campus) and Dr. Mikel Koven (University of Worcester) also sat at our table and I enjoyed getting their perspectives on experiential learning and studying abroad. Sarah Stoodley (MA in political science, ’08) originally from Grand Falls-Windsor, and her British fiancé Chris Stubley, were a great addition to our table. While in London, I also met with historians from the Greenwich Maritime Institute to discuss future partnerships with the Faculty of Arts at Memorial – stay tuned for further developments!
Last week I was at the Canadian Council of Deans of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences in Ottawa. Well attended by Deans from across Canada, we shared stories about many compelling issues – from the changing relationships of governments to post-secondary education to strategies for raising the profile of the wonderful teaching and research that occurs in the Arts. We heard thoughtful presentations from (among others) Dr. Antonia Maioni, the new President of the Canadian Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences, Jeffrey Simpson from The Globe and Mail and filmmaker Jean-Daniel Lafond, husband of former Governor General Michaëlle Jean. They offered much for contemplation, and action. More on this in my next message.
Meanwhile, and most importantly, Memorial’s Convocation is coming up soon! This will be my first May Convocation as Dean of the Faculty of Arts and I am really looking forward to congratulating all of our of arts graduates. The tricky part will be putting on those hoods without knocking off anyone’s cap!