June 27, 2022
Welcome Welcome to the June 2022 issue of Letter to the Board, a regular communication to members of the UBC community. Highlights Peter A. Allard, QC, 1946 – 2022 Welcome Arig al Shaibah Thanks to our Donors and Alumni New UBC Vancouver student residences opens with gifted names from Musqueam Province invests $50m in […]
January 25, 2021
Mental illness affects every one of us, either directly or through those we love. And it affects people of all ages and walks of life, including members of the UBC community. Suicide is the second leading cause of death in Canada for those between the ages of 15 and 24, and the second leading cause […]
November 26, 2018
The holiday season is a good time to reflect back on the year that has gone and to look forward to the year ahead. Looking back, the past year has seen a number of significant accomplishments, most notably the endorsement of the new UBC strategic plan, Shaping UBC’s Next Century. Other milestones included the opening […]
September 4, 2018
Welcome to UBC! You’re joining a special community – a community of 65,000 students – students like you, who come from more than 150 countries to study at one of the top universities in the world. You’re starting on an exciting period in your lives. You will meet new friends, discover new interests. Maybe, […]
July 5, 2018
Council of Ministers of Education, Convention Centre, Vancouver BC Thank you, Minister Mark. I would like to acknowledge some of the other post-secondary education leaders from across B.C. in the room today, including Kathy Kinloch from BCIT and Ken Tourand from the Nicola Valley Institute of Technology. I would also like to acknowledge Karen Ranalleta, […]
June 29, 2018
MP Breakfast Connections, Enigma Urban Eatery, Vancouver BC Thank you, Joyce, and good morning everybody! I am so happy to be here. Joyce, UBC values your support as our local MP. We also value the support we receive from your government for our research and teaching activities. As one of Canada’s leading research universities – […]
June 28, 2018
Earlier this week, I took part in the annual presidents’ meeting of the Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU). The 50 member institutions are located in Australia, Canada, Chile, China, Indonesia, the United States and 10 other countries, and include some of the world’s most prestigious and influential universities. UBC is the only Canadian […]
May 22, 2018
This week marks the start of one of my favourite times of year at UBC: Graduation. It’s a special time on campus, as we honour the significant accomplishment students have achieved in their lives and the important contribution they have made to the university. I personally feel privileged to be a part of UBC Graduation […]
May 9, 2018
Innovation is a key theme woven throughout UBC’s new strategic plan. Along with collaboration and inclusion, it’s one of three cross-cutting priorities that will enhance our institutional impact in an increasingly complex and interconnected world. Truth is, innovation isn’t a new concept at UBC; we’ve been innovating for more than a century. One key form […]
April 13, 2018
Sending all students and faculty love during exams. A post shared by Santa J. Ono (@ubcprez) on Apr 10, 2018 at 9:28pm PDT The other morning while walking by the UBC Life building, I noticed a young woman sitting at a table, her books and laptop spread in front of her, fast asleep with her […]
March 12, 2018
Tomorrow is shaped by what we hear today. I love the sound of my cello. I can lose myself for hours, practicing just one small refrain. But playing alone – the sound of just one cello – doesn’t compare to the experience of playing in a trio or quartet. If we continue adding more players […]
March 1, 2018
Earlier this week, the Government of Canada tabled a historic budget for research, responding to the views expressed by researchers across Canada and the recommendations made in the Fundamental Science Review. Budget 2018 highlights several key themes that align very well with UBC’s priorities – increasing opportunities for women in the economy, investing in the […]
November 9, 2017
As follow-up to my September 5th letter to the UBC community, I received a draft statement on freedom of expression from an internal working group convened by Professor Neil Guppy, Senior Advisor to the Provosts on Academic Freedom. The working group, comprising ten faculty and staff members, worked through several iterations of a statement. Input […]
October 30, 2017
As Canada’s 150th anniversary year draws to a close, this is a good time to reflect on this country, its history and its future. Canada has much to be proud of – our contributions to both global peacekeeping and defence against tyranny, the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, our welcoming of Syrian refugees, our scientific […]
October 10, 2017
Recently I spoke at a TEDx event about the need to support young people struggling with mental health issues. To mark World Mental Health Day, I have decided to adapt my talk into a blog post. Please also see the joint Globe and Mail op-ed piece that University of Toronto Chancellor Michael Wilson and I wrote about […]
September 18, 2017
Dear friends: As we get caught up in the day to day activities of a busy September, it’s hard to believe that it was just two weeks ago that we welcomed thousands of new students to our campuses at UBC Create and UBC Imagine. They were joyous occasions. But there were some sobering moments, too. […]
July 25, 2017
I love summer at UBC. The sunshine, the luxuriant foliage, the mountains and the ocean, the historic buildings – it all reminds me how lucky I am to work at this amazing institution. Another thing I like about walking or cycling through the campus on my way to work at this time of year is […]
April 6, 2017
As President, I have an unwavering commitment to the free, respectful expression of ideas and I trust that all members of our community, share this commitment. The University of British Columbia has a long legacy of commitment to respectful debate. UBC’s position on the free and lawful expression of ideas was powerfully articulated in President […]
April 3, 2017
This past weekend, I was honoured and humbled to participate in the raising of Reconciliation Pole at UBC’s Vancouver campus. It was gratifying to see so many people turn out for this important occasion and to hear from residential school survivors such as Elder Barney Williams and Pauline Jones (below left), who spoke with courage and candour of the […]
April 3, 2017
The University of British Columbia welcomes two important initiatives announced today by the provincial government. The government announced today a 250-graduate increase to UBC’s technology education capacity and a planned public consultation process to chart a course for a more vibrant, innovative and connected Robson Square district. Today’s announcement means UBC will be able to graduate […]
March 28, 2017
Vancouver Board of Trade March 28, 2017, 11:30 a.m. Four Seasons Hotel, Vancouver Good afternoon and thank you everyone. It’s an honour to be with you today. I’d like to begin by acknowledging that we are gathered on the the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the Coast Salish people, the Musqueam, the Squamish and […]
March 24, 2017
The federal budget introduced this week includes welcome measures that support the continued development of Canada’s most important assets: our people. The 2017 federal budget tabled by Finance Minister Bill Morneau Wednesday includes funding for work-integrated learning, Indigenous student supports, and a new organization to support skills development across Canada. “We are pleased to see […]
March 17, 2017
Faculty of Arts, University of British Columbia The “liberal arts” today are generally understood to mean the arts and social sciences, as distinct from the physical sciences and technology. But “liberal arts” used to be applied to all the skills that would enable a person to act as a responsible citizen In that sense, when […]
March 16, 2017
Pan Pacific Hotel, Vancouver Thank you, George for that warm introduction. Honoured to be here. Consul General Okai, Mr. Wakabayashi, distinguished guests. Would like to thank the Nikkei Place Foundation for inviting me to the annual Sakura Gala which raises funds for the Feels Like Home campaign Proceeds from tonight will help the Foundation create […]
January 29, 2017
The University of British Columbia is deeply concerned about a new executive order signed by President Trump on Friday preventing individuals from seven countries from entering the U.S. for 90 days. We are especially concerned about the effect of the executive order on some UBC students, faculty and staff, as well as other scholars in Canada, […]
January 24, 2017
Yesterday, I was honoured to be named British Columbia’s first Chief Advisor: Innovation Network, and to be appointed to the Premier’s Technology Council. The announcement was made at DarkVision Technologies in North Vancouver, a terrific example of a BC-born, innovation-driven company. As Chief Advisor, I will work with leaders in industry and post-secondary education and research to transform […]
January 23, 2017
Thank you, Premier Clark. Good morning everyone. I’m delighted to be here today at DarkVision Technologies, a terrific example of a BC-born, innovation-driven company. The products being developed here may well change the operations of oil and gas companies around the world. I’m also proud to be standing here with Stephen who just happens to […]
January 16, 2017
I’m pleased to announce two new appointments, Dr. Weihong Song as Senior Advisor to the President on China, and Julie Wagemakers as Executive Director, Office of the President. Dr. Weihong Song is the Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Alzheimer’s Disease and Jack Brown and Family Professor in the Department of Psychiatry. He serves as […]
June 12, 2016
To all members of the UBC community: Early on Sunday morning, a senseless act of gun violence claimed the lives of 50 innocent people in a nightclub in Florida and gravely injured another 53, making it the worst mass shooting in U.S. history. It has emerged that the gunman specifically targeted the club because of […]
March 23, 2016
To All Members of the UBC Community: Once again, the world has been stunned by acts of brutal violence that have taken the lives of innocent men, women, and children going about their daily business. Once again we have seen images of broken bodies and broken buildings, shattered by the bombs of terrorists intent on […]
November 21, 2015
As many of you know, UBC is featured in the Fifth Estate program about sexual assault and harassment on university campuses. We admire the courage of the women who came forward to bring attention to this crucial issue.
November 14, 2015
To All Members of the UBC Community: Yesterday we witnessed another in the series of bombings, shootings, and mutilations that have recently targeted people around the world for their values and beliefs. The killings in Paris were especially terrible in the toll they took of young people who were gunned down at six different sites […]
August 25, 2015
Aug. 25, 2015 After collegial and congenial discussions, today the University of British Columbia, represented by Acting President Angela Redish, and the UBC Faculty Association, represented by President Mark MacLean, have agreed to a process to review the concerns raised by the Faculty Association in their letter of August 18, 2015. The parties have agreed […]
April 16, 2014
With the 2014-15 UBC budget now approved by the Board of Governors, I wanted to provide my annual update on the financial context and outlook of the University.
April 11, 2014
Globe and Mail Op-Ed
April 10, 2014
It is with deep sadness that I heard earlier today of the Hon. Jim Flaherty’s untimely death, a death all the more tragic for coming so close on the heels of retirement from his distinguished career in public service.
January 17, 2014
In an era of ‘non-places’ how can universities become more distinctive from each other to allow for the intellectual diversity needed for healthy social, cultural and economic innovation?
Federal International Education Strategy Signals a Commitment to Improve Canada’s Higher Education Status Globally
January 15, 2014
Federal Government strategy aims to double the number of foreign students and researchers at Canadian universities by 2020.
January 6, 2014
Friday, January 10, 2014 4:30 p.m (PST) UBC Robson Square Theatre. Public Policy Forum Lecture Series: Kevin Lynch, Vice-Chair, BMO Financial Group.
November 27, 2013
UBC Athletics sport review seeks input by Dec. 1.
October 29, 2013
A new safety portal with a message from Louise Cowin, VP Students.
September 30, 2013
I want to express my profound dismay in hearing of the unconscionable attack at the Yobe State College of Agriculture.
September 25, 2013
I want to express my deepest concern to learn that John Greyson and Tarek Loubani remain in custody in Cairo, Egypt.
September 18, 2013
We are announcing today the measures we are taking.
September 16, 2013
Our university has been in the news since Friday September 6th, and for all the wrong reasons.
September 10, 2013
UBC is announcing three immediate measures to address problems that surfaced during FROSH events.
August 23, 2013
The University of British Columbia is pleased to announce the establishment of the UBC China Council.
July 18, 2013
In my final address to The Vancouver Board of Trade, I will map my vision for innovation at UBC, and invite business leaders to see UBC as a key partner in the evolution of an innovation ecosystem in this province.
July 18, 2013
Join me on Thursday, September 12 in Vancouver and Monday, September 16 in the Okanagan for the 2013 President’s Town Hall or submit your questions to me online.
April 8, 2013
I will be stepping down as President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of British Columbia at the end of June 2014, after serving for eight years in what has been an inspiring and rewarding position.
March 21, 2013
Four factors are rapidly taking us beyond the tipping point for major change in postsecondary education.
March 6, 2013
My opinion piece for the Vancouver Sun with Mayor Gregor Robertson
December 21, 2012
A successful official visit to Chongqing, China has helped to solidify future partnerships and collaboration between the city of Chongqing and UBC.