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Decade of leadership

By Geoff Ash

It was a fitting farewell for Student Affairs and Services’ (SAS) Dean Dr. Lilly Walker.

Attendees filled the Junior Common room in R. Gushue Hall on Thursday, Sept. 9, to say goodbye to Dr. Walker and to commemorate her 10 years of leadership as dean of SAS.

Family, past and present staff, students as well as deans from other Memorial units were in attendance. The crowded room was a testament to the impact she has had on the Memorial community during the past decade.

Touching messages of personal experience and thanks illustrated Dr. Walker’s passion and commitment to her students, her staff and her family, while a little good natured roasting kept tears to a minimum – as well as demonstrate the strong bonds developed within the department. It was the second of such farewell events; a university-wide celebration in Dr. Walker’s honour occurred the previous day in the Senior Common Room with students and student leaders, senior officials and senior executive present.

Dr. Walker’s legacy as the students’ dean will not soon be forgotten. During her time at Memorial she developed new initiatives to affirm and celebrate our students -- the Chancellor’s Breakfast event, the Scholarship Luncheon and Amazing Students! to name just a few -- and initiated new programs like I Love MUNdays, service learning and leadership training.

She also envisioned the development of new student spaces, such as The Landing gathering space in the University Centre and multicultural religious space in the university’s chapel, and facilitated student-focused policy developments like accommodations for students with disabilities and a Student Code of Conduct. She also ensured that students were a priority during the development of Memorial’s Strategic Plan.

Memorial University wishes Dr. Walker all the best in the next stage of her career path, which will see her return to Memorial with the Faculty of Psychology.