This year, my wife, Jan, and I are looking forward to moving into our new home at UniverCity, the unique residential village emerging on top of Burnaby Mountain, intimately tied to Simon Fraser University. Our shift of residence drives home to me, in the most personal terms, the momentous change and renewal that is resonating through every quarter of this remarkable institution. Now on the threshold of its 40th anniversary, SFU is moving forward at an unprecedented pace.
From its beginning in 1965, SFU has redefined the academic status
quo with a commitment to innovate rather than replicate, to embrace
risk and bold initiative, and to reach out to the wider community.
Today, as I begin my second term as president, I applaud the outstanding
faculty, staff and students who continue to build on that distinctive
legacy. Their achievements, highlighted here, enhance our long-standing
reputation as one of Canada’s leading comprehensive universities.
I came to SFU four years ago, privileged to preside over a great
university in the first years of a new century. My goal was to position
SFU even more strongly nationally and internationally, and to find
the financial resources to fund the necessary changes. To that end,
SFU launched "Reaching New Heights," a campaign to raise
$125 million by December, 2006 for new buildings, new professorships,
and new student awards.
Already we are closing on this goal, and have initiated major changes
that require us to redouble our efforts.
This year, we'll complete three new residences to house our growing
student population, which will grow by about one-third in the next
five years. We are welcoming large numbers of talented new faculty
from the best universities in the world, assuring that we remain
one of Canada's most competitive research institutions. We
have completed the first two floors of our magnificent new campus
in Surrey, BC's fastest growing municipality. We are building
a major new applied sciences building to open next year on Burnaby
Mountain, as well as a new arts and social sciences complex and a
new health sciences building on the hill. We are preparing to enrol
the first students in the newly established Faculty of Health Sciences,
which will rival the Faculty of Education in size by 2010. We will
soon relocate our innovative graduate business programs to the beautiful
new Segal Graduate School of Business in the heart of Vancouver's
business district, and our School for the Contemporary Arts will
anchor Canada's most important urban renewal project in downtown
This is a massive agenda for change. It is an agenda that might
overwhelm an institution less agile, less imaginative or less motivated
But I am confident it will be accomplished, thanks to the many
alumni, friends and supporters who give so generously in support
of our vision.
I invite you to join them as we fast forward to the future.
President and Vice-Chancellor