Campus Life

Inspiring and motivating instructor, Dr. Kristine Alexander, recognized with Graduate Mentorship Award

An instructor and mentor with a unique ability to recognize the talent and potential of her students, Dr. Kristine Alexander inspires and motivates her graduate trainees by providing unwavering support and encouraging them to break boundaries and embrace risk in their learning journeys.

Alexander will be recognized with the University of Lethbridge School of Graduate Studies Graduate Mentorship Award at 2024 Spring Convocation, Ceremony II on Thursday, May 30, 2024, 2:30 p.m. in the 1st Choice Savings Centre gymnasium.

Kristine Alexander held the Canada Research Chair in Child and Youth Studies and was co-director of the University’s interdisciplinary Institute for Child and Youth Studies.

“As a fellow graduate mentor, I have learned tremendously from Dr. Alexander about how to set students up for success in academia and professionally after the degree,” says Dr. Gideon Fujiwara, who nominated Alexander for the honour. “Dr. Alexander prioritizes connecting students’ experiences at the U of L to their longer-term personal and professional goals while building a supportive and collegial intellectual community.”

Kristine Alexander

Inspired by the mentors who supported her along the way, Dr. Kristine Alexander is paying it forward by supporting her own graduate students on their academic and professional journeys.

Alexander is an Associate Professor in the University of Lethbridge’s Department of History. From 2013-2023 she held the Canada Research Chair in Child and Youth Studies and was co-director of the University’s interdisciplinary Institute for Child and Youth Studies. She has supervised numerous graduate students in history and cultural, social and political thought (CSPT), served on supervisory committees in anthropology, CSPT, history and sociology, and (with Dr. Jan Newberry) recruited and supervised the first postdoctoral fellow in the humanities at ULethbridge.

Alexander encourages her graduate trainees to produce high-quality original research, to challenge and believe in themselves, and to connect their studies to their lives and aspirations beyond the university. Her students praise her unique ability to recognize and nurture their potential, and her approach combines intellectual rigour with encouragement, collaboration and support.

Over the past decade, Alexander’s graduate students have studied topics ranging from the Black Death in medieval Italy to the history of the American Hotel in Fort Macleod. Their research projects are historical as well as interdisciplinary, and Alexander encourages her trainees to share their findings with both academic and popular audiences. In addition to giving public talks, speaking to the media, and presenting at conferences across North America and Europe, Alexander’s students have curated exhibits at the Galt Museum and produced historical board games about the First World War and the Great Depression based on original archival research. Alexander involves her graduate students in community-engaged research projects, collaborates with them on publications, and supports them in their applications for scholarships and highly competitive national grants. 

Trust, respect and community-building are cornerstones of Alexander’s mentorship style. While motivating each of them individually, she also fosters genuine and long-lasting connections between her graduate students. Alexander intentionally creates a lively and supportive intellectual community within which her students can share ideas, strategize together and celebrate each other’s successes.

Described by her students as insightful, patient, enthusiastic, supportive, kind, generous and empathetic, Alexander’s influence extends far beyond graduation. With her guidance, graduate trainees develop competencies and confidence that serve them well as they transition into professional careers. Her students note that she inspires them “to be kind, to be curious, and to work harder.”