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News Briefs

Huron ‘thrilled’ for new leadership

Mark Blagrave was welcomed this summer as the new dean of the faculty of arts and social sciences at Huron University College.

“We are thrilled to have him join our faculty and our administrative leadership,” said Ramona Lumpkin, Huron’s principal. “He has a very strong background in the liberal arts, which is our focus here at Huron.”

Blagrave, an Oakville native, comes from Mount Allison University where he served in a variety of roles including head of the English department and director of drama.

Short-listed for the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize for Best First Book, Blagrave’s recent novel — Silver Salts — is the first literary work of its kind to be set in twentieth century Saint John, New Brunswick.

At MTA he placed emphasis on a student-centred educational environment through his efforts of reforming curricula. Moreover, Blagrave chaired the Working Group on

Outcomes and Literacies, which is responsible for consulting with MTA’s administration to set specific student learning outcomes. He also chaired the vice-president’s Advisory Committee on the First-Year Experience.

“He is very much interested in [the] student experience,” added Lumpkin. “We feel his leadership will work tremendously well [at Huron]”

Western opens one-stop shop

With a price tag of $21 million, Western’s new Student Services Building is scheduled to be open for student usage this fall.

Located between Weldon Library and the University Community Centre, the structure will bring a one-stop convenience to Western students, according to the SSB website.

Krys Chekchowski, director of Student Information Services, explained how the extra space would help the university better serve both students and staff.

“It should provide more space not only to staff and administration, but also to students. More space allows us to do more of the things we want to do for students,” she said.

SSB will house a number of important student services including Financial Aid, Student Development Services, the Registrar’s Office, and Student Information Services.

Western’s plans for the building also include improving the university’s indigenous services.

“The amount of space indigenous services has now is double what they had in the UCC. There will be more room for help in academic pursuits, for tutoring and other services offered to indigenous students,” Chekchowski said.

Another addition includes the David S. Chu International Student Centre, made possible by a $1 million donation from the Chu families. Located on the second floor, the centre is meant to further enhance international student services.

Featuring a large space on the ground floor dubbed “Student Central”, the four-storey structure will also function as a welcoming environment for prospective students and visitors to campus, according to Checkchowski.

Abid-Aziz Ladhani

Abid-Aziz Ladhani

Abid was a News Editor for Volume 103 of The Gazette. He was enrolled in his second year of the Honours Political Science program at Western.
Abid-Aziz Ladhani

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