June 23rd, 2024

U of L kicks off convocation

By Lethbridge Herald on June 1, 2023.

Chief Marshal Michelle Houge and piper Tom WIlson lead the procession up the hill from university hall to start the morning convocation ceremony Thursday at the University of Lethbridge. Herald photo by Steffanie Costigan

Steffanie Costigan – LETHBRIDGE HERALD – Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

The University of Lethbridge celebrated its graduates in the 2023 convocation and welcomed the installation of their new 15th Chancellor on Thursday morning at the 1st Choice Savings Centre for Sport and Wellness. 

This year’s convocation honours 1,358 students’ achievements. Chancellor Terry Whitehead was raised in Lethbridge and formally attended the University of Lethbridge. Whitehead expressed the honour this is for him and recognized the former chancellors who came before him.

“I did not imagine this. I was fortunate to cross the stage many years ago. I thought that would probably be the last time I would be on the stage. But it’s an extraordinary honour deeply humbling. And when I think back to the chancellors who led this university over the last 56 years now. It’s a wonderful honour to be walking in their shoes,” said Whitehead.

The convocation marked the final ceremonies for former vice-chancellor Mike Mahon’s 13-year tenure at the University of Lethbridge. Whitehead voiced his respect for past chancellors and the volunteers and staff members who work diligently.

“We’re so proud of our institution. And it’s people like our past chancellors, but also all of our volunteer senate members or volunteer board members who put in the hours and hours that sometimes people don’t see, to help you build this institution to what it is. So, it’s a real honour to be chancellor for the next four years.”

Among the graduates recognized during the ceremony, Wendy Williams took the stand in accepting her husband Lorne Williams Ph.D. in Education degree. Williams shared her husband’s battle with cancer and how he had passed away after the cancer returned. 

“About a year ago, he became ill with cancer. He underwent surgery and radiation. And then, unfortunately, after a relatively short period of time, we discovered that the cancer was back and had spread…His educational research was into teaching and learning in universities, actually. So, my husband, it was his fifth degree. He has two undergraduates and two master’s degrees, and this was his fifth degree to get his Ph.D. in education.,” said Williams. 

Timothy Caulfield, honorary degree recipient, addressed the graduates speaking on not always following your dreams but rather having an open mind for the future. Caulfield said in his youth his dream was to be a rock star, and he had a lack of interest in his grades. He shared his mother’s advice to him to finish university.

He said, “We don’t always stay with plan A.” he went on to say sometimes we go with plan B or C. 

Whitehead said convocation is an opportunity for the community to share the joy of recognizing students’ hard work and accomplishments.

“I think convocation is just one of many events and opportunities with the university and the broader community to get together to celebrate our students to celebrate everything that the university means to the community. And you know, to bring people together for that. I think it’s a celebration, it’s happy, it’s positive.”

Convocation ceremonies continue today starting at 9:30 a.m.

Following is the schedule:

• Ceremony III – 9:30 a.m. – School of Graduate Studies (MC, MEd, MFA, MMus); Faculty of Education (BEd); Combined Degrees with Education; Faculty of Fine Arts (all programs); Board of Governors Teaching Chair: Christopher Mattatall; Excellence in Teaching Award: Devon Smither

 • Ceremony IV – 2:30 p.m. – School of Graduate Studies (MHSM and MSc (Mgt)); Dhillon School of Business (all programs); Combined Degrees with Management; Honorary Degree: Fred Bradley

Share this story:

1 Comment
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Dennis Bremner

approval needed? Back to your old ways I see

Last edited 1 year ago by Dennis Bremner