The following announcement, sent on behalf of David Farrar, Provost and Vice-President Academic, is being sent to all faculty members at UBC’s Vancouver campus.
The search process for an Academic Director for the UBC Learning Exchange is complete and I am pleased to announce that Dr. Angela Towle assumed that role effective 1 February 2013.
The Academic Director will serve as the academic champion for the Learning Exchange, taking a lead role in ensuring that the Learning Exchange is linked effectively with UBC’s academic mission. In collaboration with the Learning Exchange Director, the Academic Director will build upon and add to current Learning Exchange community-university engagement activities in the Downtown Eastside (DTES) and support the University’s effort to achieve and strengthen its Place and Promise commitments.
The UBC Learning Exchange exemplifies UBC’s commitment to community engagement. For the past twelve years the Learning Exchange has provided a welcoming, informal and lively focal point in the DTES, and has brought thousands of people together to work with and learn from each other. The Learning Exchange operates highly successful programs that promote computer and English literacy, and provides leadership opportunities to residents, through a community development approach. The Learning Exchange is also an off-campus entry point where UBC students and faculty can connect with local people and organizations, through a range of community-university engagement activities.
As Academic Director, Dr. Towle will be working alongside Kathleen Leahy, Director of the Learning Exchange. Kathleen provides community leadership and oversees day-to-day operations and programs. The Academic Director will report to the Office of the Provost and Vice-President Academic and will consult with the Vice-President, Communications and Community Partnership.
Angela is an Associate Professor in the Department of Medicine and Senior Scholar in the Centre for Health Education Scholarship, Faculty of Medicine. She is also Co-Director of the Division of Health Care Communication, College of Health Disciplines, which has a research and development focus on patient/client involvement in health care decision-making and in health professional education. Between 2002 and 2010 she was Associate Dean, MD Undergraduate Education, Curriculum and Vancouver Fraser Medical Program in the Faculty of Medicine and part of the leadership team that implemented the expansion and distribution of the medical school. She has over 25 years’ experience of curriculum and faculty development, medical education scholarship, and community engagement at UBC and in the UK.
As this new chapter for the Learning Exchange begins, I would also like to express my appreciation to Dr. Margo Fryer for her dedication and leadership in the 11 years she served as the founding Director of the Learning Exchange and the UBC-Community Learning Initiative. Dr. Fryer is now Senior Advisor, Student Learning Initiatives, in the office of the Vice-President, Students.