Message from the Dean

The immense talent and impact of my fellow faculty continues to propel me to sing the praises of our Faculty of Environment in the way it engages students in changing the world for the better, in the way it engages partners to put new practices and policies into action, and in the way it responds to reconciliation, equity, diversity and inclusivity, and supporting people through the pandemic.  

I am over a year into my deanship and I am proud to work for an institution that is ranked #1 in global university rankings for impact on sustainable cities and communities.  The Times Higher Education global ranking also placed SFU as in the top ten universities globally to facilitate productive conversations about peace, justice and strong institutions, supporting local and aquatic ecosystems, and in climate action.  This is an exciting university, with two of the three campuses walking distance from Burrard Inlet, to learn and grow. 

The programs we offer contribute substantially to sustainability, approaching deep time questions and problems through the lens of resource and environmental management, environmental science, human and physical geography, archaeology, heritage management, and ecological restoration.

We value interdisciplinary learning.  This means we provide rich experiences for students to learn about Indigenous knowledge, governance and reconciliation. We recognize the interplay between values and evidence to inform decision-making. We teach core skills so students can understand long-term rates and dynamic trends of environmental change, policy alternatives, and how our understanding of the past, present and future can inform sustainable approaches for people and the planet to thrive.  

We value experiential learning.  This means our learning environments allow students to dive deep into theory and also apply what they’ve learned to real-world situations through unique learning opportunities outside of the classroom such as field trips and schools, co-op placements, volunteer stewardship activities, leadership training, and more. We couldn’t create these opportunities without our valued partnerships with First Nations, governments, non-governmental organizations, foundations and industry to bring student ideas and research to problem-solving.  

We are committed to addressing issues of Indigenous rights which includes fostering respectful relationships and partnerships, and changes to governance that enhance quality of life, and create opportunities for cooperation and collaboration.  

We are also committed to improving conditions of equity, diversity and inclusivity.  We want to ensure our work and learning environments are inclusive and welcoming.  We are putting a lens to the under-representation of Indigenous, Black, African American, and racially minoritized faculty, staff, and students in recruitment and hiring processes, especially at the most senior levels.  We continue to incorporate historical and contemporary experiences of Indigenous, racially minoritized communities, and Blacks into the curriculum, and are expanding our training for faculty and staff on anti-racism and anti-oppression.  

Join our team of changemakers!  We are here to offer you a personalized and future-oriented experience that builds community and capacity for a better world.