April 21, 2005 for immediate release
Two career educators who have made significant contributions to the advancement of knowledge will be recognized with honorary degrees from UNBC in 2005.
Mary Alice Danaher has been the driving force behind the Weekend University, a unique partnership involving UNBC, the Cariboo Tribal Council, and the University College of the Cariboo (now, Thompson Rivers University). The program makes courses available in Williams Lake on alternate weekends to First Nations people from throughout the region, and a number have graduated with bachelor’s degrees and certificates. Most of her 35-year teaching career has been spent in the Cariboo, working with the Canim Lake Band and the Cariboo Tribal Council. She is a graduate of The University of Montreal, the University of Toronto, and Gonzaga University and is recipient of the Order of Canada.
K. George Pedersen has the distinction of being the President or Vice-President of five BC universities, including a short term as Interim President of UNBC before the arrival of Charles Jago. He was also President of the University of Western Ontario for nine years and served as UNBC’s second Chancellor for six years. Born in northern Alberta, he received his teaching diploma in 1952 and has since provided unparalleled leadership and advocacy for public education. He received ten scholarships en route to completing a PhD at the University of Chicago where he gained a profound understanding of the relationship between higher education and the aims of society. Presently, he is an advisor to the Salzburg Seminar, which provides assistance to eastern European and Russian universities. He has been admitted to the Order of Ontario and the Order of British Columbia, and is an Officer of the Order of Canada.
Both Dr. Danaher and Dr. Pedersen will be presented with honorary degrees at the May 27 Convocation ceremony. The official credential is a Doctor of Laws honoris causa.
An honorary degree is the highest award presented by the University and recognizes outstanding public service of national significance. Past recipients have included Haida artist Bill Reid, former Governor-General Ramon Hnatyshyn, current Lieutenant-Governor Iona Campagnolo, and Fetal Alcohol Syndrome pioneer Kwadwo Asante. This past August, UNBC also presented ten honorary degrees to its founders as part of the University’s celebrations in recognition of its first decade of full operations.
Contact:Robert van Adrichem, Director of Media and Public Relations, UNBC – 250.960.5622