Victoria Leenders-Cheng is one of those people. You know the kind; incredibly accomplished, well rounded and, yes, impossibly nice too. And, for the purposes of this article, it’s important to note that she’s smart. Really smart. So smart, in fact, that she’s vying for the title of Canada’s Smartest Person as one of the contestants on the new CBC program of the same name.
People often say sports can forge character. But for Allan Downey of the Nak’azdli First Nation and a newly hired academic associate in Indigenous Studies at the McGill Institute for the Study of Canada, it goes even deeper than that. “Lacrosse was my gateway,” he says. “It was my bridge to an education. It’s unbelievable to me the places I’ve been, the people I’ve met and the communities I’ve been welcomed to all because of this game, because of this stick.”
That a McGill student is motivated by the prospect of learning isn’t really news. The interesting part is seeing where that motivation takes each individual. Take the case of Courtney Ayukawa. If you had told her a few years ago that one day she would be active in student politics, she would have laughed. Today, Ayukawa President of the Students’ Society of McGill University
Adam B. Coape-Arnold has come a long way from his days studying philosophy and working in the record industry to being one of the founders of Cult Yogourt, a buisness that makes gourmet artisanal Greek yogourt using heirloom cultures imported from Greece, Bulgaria, Sweden and the Caspian Sea. He credits the School of Continuing Studies for helping him make the transition.
Rassier comes to the job following a year spent as Interim Dean which was preceded by three years as Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Studies in the Faculty of Education.
Quebec’s new finance minister, Carlos Leitao, BA’79, has a way with numbers. Good thing, since he is the architect of the Liberal Party’s first budget under Premier Philippe Couillard that will be introduced later today. But the province’s faltering economy wasn’t the only thing that propelled Leitao into the political fray.
On May 28, Roderick Macdonald was awarded in absentia the McGill University Medal for Exceptional Academic Achievement, one of the University’s highest honours. Macdonald received the McGill Medal as part of the Convocation ceremony for the Faculty of Law, where he taught thousands of students over the course of a distinguished career that spanned more than three decades.
“Being Chancellor has been a whole new life for me,” says H. Arnold Steinberg. “Nothing compares to this.”Profile
With his mandate ending on June 30, Chancellor H. Arnold Steinberg is getting ready to officiate his last round of McGill convocations. His chancellorship is just the latest achievement for a man whose deep connections to the University span his entire adult life – including 19 years as Chairman of the Board of Governors of the McGill University-Montreal Children’s Hospital Research Institute, 10 years on the University’s Board of Governors and, with his wife, Professor emerita Blema Steinberg, playing an instrumental role in developing McGill’s renowned medical simulation centre. But, as Chancellor Steinberg tells the McGill Reporter, he doesn’t plan to be finished with McGill any time soon.
On April 8, at the concert commemorating the 70th anniversary of D-Day and the 100th anniversary of the First World War, there will be lots of butterflies among the more than 100 musicians who will take part. Chances are no one will be more stoked than Moe Touizrar, the doctoral student in Music Composition who was commissioned by Alain Cazes, Director of the McGill Wind Symphony to write a special piece just for this event. “It is my first commissioned piece,” says Touizrar. “It’s pretty exciting.”
Dr. Semaghan Gashu Abebe, a law professor from Ethiopia, is an O’Brien Fellow in Residence at the Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism (CHRLP) at the Faculty of Law for the 2013-14 academic year. He is also McGill’s first visitor from the Scholars at Risk Network (SAR).