Weeks named U of L's new VP, Research

The University of Lethbridge has appointed a new Vice-President, Research. Dr. Daniel J. Weeks has been named the institution's second VP Research and will take over the position July 1, 2009.

Weeks joins the University from Simon Fraser University where he is currently a Professor and Chair of the Department of Psychology, as well as operator of the PsychoMotor Behaviour Laboratory.

Born in Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., Weeks received a BA with honours in psychology from the University of Windsor (1983), an MSc specializing in human biodynamics from McMaster (1985) and a PhD in psychology specializing in cognition and motor performance from Auburn University (1989). He completed his postdoctoral work as a visiting Assistant Professor in the Department Psychological Science at Purdue University.

Weeks is a cognitive psychologist and an internationally recognized expert on human motor control. He also has a research program focused on skill acquisition in persons with Down syndrome. He has pioneered new brain imaging techniques to determine the impact of cerebral specialization and information processing on health and behaviour, among other projects.

"Dr. Weeks is well known as someone who has worked on both sides of the border, at all levels of the academic and research funding community, and on projects that have not only helped to build research capacity and attract significant funding - and people - to his present employer, but have also affected people's lives in a very positive way," said Dr. Bill Cade, the U of L's President and Vice-Chancellor. "We are very pleased Dan has chosen to join our team, and look forward to having him in the community."

Weeks said he is looking forward to fitting in to the personal, but far-reaching, nature of the
U of L research office and the people behind it.

"If I were to use a boxing analogy, the U of L 'punches bigger than its weight' in terms of influence," Weeks said.

"U of L researchers are key players on several national and international stages, and yet the faculty and administrative team retain a personable attitude that reflects well on the University, its programs, accessibility to students and other factors such as community outreach."

In addition to his active research program, over the last five years, Weeks has focused on facilitating research and service opportunities for the Down Syndrome Research Foundation. This work has resulted in more than $10 million in capital fundraising. Recently appointed to the Board of Down Syndrome International, Weeks is actively promoting health and physical activity in developing countries around the world as a fundamental human right for persons with intellectual disability.