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REF NO.: 269

SUBJECT: New principal for Sir Wilfred Grenfell College

DATE: May 26

Dr. John Ashton has been named the new principal of Memorial University's Sir Wilfred Grenfell College in Corner Brook.

The appointment was approved yesterday by Memorial's governing Board of Regents. Dr. Ashton's appointment is effective July 1, 2004. He succeeds Dr. Adrian Fowler whose term ends June 30, 2004.

Dr. Ashton is a long-standing faculty member and professor of folklore at Grenfell College. He most recently served as head of the Division of Social Sciences at the college. He came to Grenfell College in 1982. He holds a BA (hons.) from the London School of Economics (1974), an M.A. (folklife studies) from the University of Leeds (1975) and a PhD (folklore) from Memorial University (1985). A noted folklore scholar, he has published several books and articles in academic journals.

Dr. Axel Meisen, president of Memorial, welcomed Dr. Ashton's appointment. "Dr. Ashton is an excellent scholar, teacher and administrator," said Dr. Meisen. "He knows Memorial University, Grenfell College and the region very well. I am confident he will build on the positive relationships he has developed with our faculty, students and the general community in the western region to guide the college in its immediate and future development."

Dr. Ashton will serve for a five-year term. His mandate will include leading the introduction of new programs in areas consistent with the mission of the college and the opportunities in the region. He will oversee the improvement of existing programs, enhance student recruitment initiatives, manage the college's operations and identify new sources of revenue. He is also tasked with enhancing the regional and national profile of the college as a creative and attractive institution of higher learning that supports regional development.

Memorial University of Newfoundland

MemorialUniversityof Newfoundland is one of Atlantic Canada's premiere comprehensive universities and one of the region's most important research facilities. As the only university in the province, it plays an integral role in the educational and cultural life of Newfoundland and Labrador, offering diverse undergraduate and graduate programs to approximately 17,000 students. With campuses in the capital city of St. John's, in Harlow, UK, and the Newfoundland west coast city of Corner Brook (Sir Wilfred Grenfell College), Memorial provides a distinctive and stimulating environment for learning.

Sir Wilfred Grenfell College offers 12 degree programs in Fine Arts, Arts and Science and Nursing. Enrolment totals approximately 1,300 students. The college will celebrate its 30th anniversary in 2005.

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Note to editors: A photo of John Ashton is available at

For further information, please contact Pamela Gill, Information Officer, SWGC,

(709) 637-6200 ext. 6134, fax (709) 637-6201,


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