Campus Life

Open Mike - October 2012, Welcoming new Chair Gord Jong and celebrating Homecoming

The start of a new academic semester is always full of activity but it seems to have been especially busy on campus this fall.

One of the added responsibilities for units throughout the University was the introduction of a new budget process and budget cycle. As a result, what was once a September to March cycle has been amended to an April to October schedule, putting us in the midst of the budget process as a new semester opened.

Just recently, a new open forum concept was introduced to the University community at which department and unit heads from across campus spoke to their strategic priorities and how they fed into their budgeting decisions.

President Mike Mahon
President Mahon invites everyone to enjoy the Homecoming and Convocation 2012 celebrations.

This was our first attempt at creating a more transparent process and it was good to see the many people who attended segments of the forum or watched via the web from our Calgary and Edmonton campuses.

We are in a time where budgets will be challenged and it is important for us to have as much transparency as possible as we manage our way through the process, trying to do the best job we can of maximizing our resources as we move the University forward.

For the University community to see what factors are at play in establishing budget priorities is an integral part of understanding the process as it relates to the whole of campus.

By now you will have heard of the appointment of our new Board of Governors Chair, Mr. Gordon E. Jong. I am very enthusiastic to welcome Gord as the new Board Chair. His breadth of experience in the post-secondary setting, including the six years he previously spent as a U of L board member as well as his role as Board Chair at Lethbridge College, is very important from a governance and management perspective.

As well, given Gord's background as a chartered accountant, his expertise is especially welcome as we navigate the intricacies of the budget process.

I thank outgoing Board Chair Bob Turner for his decade of service to the University. Throughout his time as a board member and then as Board Chair for the past six years, the U of L experienced some very significant growth and development and we are all very thankful for his contributions to that success.

As I think of successes, I can't help but get excited about the Fall Convocation ceremony. It is at times difficult not to get bogged down in the day-to-day activities of the University, dealing with the ebb and flow of budgets and other challenges. But at the end of the day, convocation brings everything back into perspective because it is why we are here.

Each convocation is a harvest for the University, where we get to enjoy watching the latest crop of graduates cross the stage and set out on their varied career paths. This fall's ceremony, in the U of L's 45th year, is even more special as we celebrate a Homecoming 2012 and get an opportunity to thank past President Bill Cade as he returns to campus to be recognized with an honorary degree.

What a great way to celebrate the ongoing progress of the U of L.

This story first appeared in the October 2012 issue of the Legend. To see the full issue in a flipbook format, follow this link.