Presidential search town halls

To: Faculty, staff, and students in Vancouver and the Okanagan

If you are a manager of staff whose work is not computer-based, please print this email and display it in a common work area for them to review.

The Presidential Search Committee is entering the significant phase of formulating the presidential position profile, and as UBC stakeholders, your input is critical. The search committee will hold town halls on the Vancouver and Okanagan campuses as well as continue to receive input from all internal and external stakeholders. Once finalized in early February, the presidential position profile will be made public.

Vancouver campus
Date: Wednesday, January 13, 2016
Lunch: 11:30 am
Town hall: 11:45 am to 1:00 pm
Location: Robert H. Lee Alumni Centre (Jack Poole Ballroom)

Okanagan campus
Date: Thursday, January 14, 2016
Lunch: 11:30 am
Town hall: 11:45 am to 1:00 pm
Location: University Theatre (ADM 026)

The Presidential Search Committee invites you to submit your views and advice on the following:

  • Required leadership attributes, values, professional qualifications, and experience of candidates
  • Priorities, opportunities, and challenges facing the university over the next five to ten years

Further information, including the last position profile, may be found on the President Search website at

I encourage you to take part in the consultation process and share your views with the search committee. The search committee looks forward to seeing you at one of the town hall meetings, but should you be unable to attend please feel free to submit your written comments to:

The University of British Columbia
Presidential Search Committee
c/o Reny Kahlon, Secretary
Old Administration Building
6328 Memorial Road, Vancouver, BC  V6T 1Z2


Thank you and Happy New Year.

Lindsay Gordon
Chair, Presidential Search Committee


Reappointment of the Vice President, Students

To: Faculty, staff and students in Vancouver and the Okanagan

If you are a manager of staff whose work is not computer-based, please print this email and display it in a common work area for them to review.

The term of Dr. Louise Cowin, Vice President, Students, is coming to an end in June 2016. Dr. Cowin has indicated her willingness to be considered for reappointment for the period July 2016 – June 2021.  In accordance with Board policy, an advisory committee has been struck to examine Dr. Cowin’s record and to make a recommendation to the President concerning her reappointment.

The following have been appointed to the Committee:

  • Martha C. Piper, Chair
  • Paul Harrison, UBCV (Senate faculty rep.)
  • Daniel Munro, UBCV (Senate student rep.)
  • Robert Lalonde, UBCO (Senate faculty rep.)
  • Shira Sneg, UBCO (Senate student rep.)
  • David Sidoo, Board of Governors
  • Barbara Miles, VP Development & Alumni Engagement
  • Robert Helsley, Dean, Sauder School of Business
  • Linc Kesler, Director, First Nations House of Learning
  • Janet Teasdale, VP Students’ portfolio
  • Herbert Rosengarten, Secretary

The role of the Vice President, Students, who is responsible to the President, is to provide strategic leadership to UBC’s student portfolio, and to accomplish the vision, commitments, goals, and actions as set out in the University’s strategic plan, Place and Promise: The UBC Plan.

The Vice President, Students provides high-level oversight that focuses upon best practices in all aspects of the student experience, including: community-engaged learning; student health, safety, and wellbeing; international learning; student advising; housing and food services; career development; and athletic and recreation services.

The Advisory Committee is entering into a consultative process to determine Dr. Cowin’s performance in relation to the duties and responsibilities attached to her portfolio as outlined in the original job description (to be found at ).

All members of the UBC community, including students, faculty, and staff, are invited to share their views via email to the Committee’s secretary, Dr. Herbert Rosengarten, at no later than January 15, 2016.  All communications will be held in confidence.

I strongly encourage you to participate in this important process.

Martha C. Piper
Interim President and Vice-Chancellor


Next steps in initiatives related to sexual assault response and prevention

If you are a manager of staff whose work is not computer-based, please print this email and display it in a common work area for them to review.

UBC has retained Paula Butler of Butler Workplace Solutions as an independent reviewer to conduct a review of UBC’s response to concerns of sexual harassment and sexual assault raised by some UBC students about a fellow student, which became the subject of media coverage. A report will be ready in February and a summary will be made available to the UBC community.

A number of other initiatives to support the development of a sexual assault policy will be announced in January. Further information will be provided as it becomes available and regular updates will be posted to

As we head into the new year, I would also like to highlight that January is Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM). I encourage everyone to get involved in the 6th annual offering of SAAM, which features events and opportunities to participate in a dialogue about sexual assault and harassment. More details can be found at

Most importantly for all of our community, I want to remind you about the resources available should you, or someone you know, disclose that they have been sexually assaulted. People are likely to disclose to someone they trust, therefore it is important that each member of our community knows how to effectively refer those who disclose to resources for support, accommodations, and reporting. For students, resources can be found at and for faculty and staff

Sara-Jane Finlay
Associate Vice President
Equity and Inclusion

Support UBC on GivingTuesday

To: Faculty, staff and students in Vancouver and the Okanagan

Today is GivingTuesday, please join us in celebrating philanthropy at UBC

Today is GivingTuesday, an international day to highlight the importance of giving back. At UBC, you can find the impact of our supporters everywhere. I invite you to use this global occasion to help us celebrate the contribution of donors, alumni and friends to our campuses — and to the world.

One hundred years ago, UBC opened its doors with few resources and modest ambitions. A century later, empowered by our community, it is a global leader making a lasting and positive difference around the world. Donors and alumni have played a vital role in that — as the amazing success of our recent start an evolution fundraising campaign has shown — and today is the ideal moment to recognize this.

Please help us to celebrate 100 years of donor impact at UBC. Our supporters help make UBC a place where open thinking leads to ideas that change the world, and will empower us to shape the next century. For more information about how to participate, please go to

No matter how you decide to get involved in GivingTuesday, please share your stories on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram with the hashtags #UBCgiving and #GivingTuesdayCA.

Thank you — and have a great GivingTuesday!

Dr. Martha C. Piper
Interim President and Vice-Chancellor


UBC featured in the fifth estate

You may have seen media coverage, regarding UBC being 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.

I want to apologize to the women in these cases who feel they have been let down by our university. While the university had to wait until it had the necessary facts to take action, I acknowledge that the process took too long. Due process can be frustrating and time-consuming. However, the university reached an appropriate conclusion. As an institution, we are committed to justice for the survivors of sexual assault.

I appreciate the light the women have shone on this issue, and I want to make a pledge. We will begin a discussion with our students, faculty and staff on a separate sexual assault policy that will enable the university to take action in a more timely and effective manner.

We will be reviewing the steps that were taken in these cases to determine how they might have been handled more effectively and expeditiously. As an institution, we are constantly looking at ways to improve our processes to make them more responsive and effective.

Information about support services for students, reporting options and assistance with reporting is available at

In addition, you can find information on supporting survivors and what you can do to promote a caring and respectful community at

Finally, let me be clear – sexual violence is unacceptable and is not tolerated at UBC. Students who have been found to have committed sexual assault following due process will be expelled from the university. Staff or faculty members who have been found to have committed sexual assault following due process will be terminated.

Martha C. Piper

Interim President and Vice-Chancellor

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