Honorary Degree Recipients Named

January 20, 2006
A Prince George-based writer and a national champion of scientific research will be the two recipients of honorary degrees from the University of Northern British Columbia in 2006.

Thomas Brzustowski (pronounced Brew-STOFF-ski) has had a distinguished career as a scientist, playing a vital role as President of Canada’s Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council for ten years, starting in 1995. Under his leadership, industry support for research and innovation flourished. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Engineering from the University of Toronto in 1958 and earned a PhD in Aeronautical Engineering from Princeton in 1963. He was a professor in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Waterloo and became Vice-President Academic in 1974. Currently, he is a Professor in the University of Ottawa’s School of Management, where he is responsible for disseminating the results of research and innovation to the financial community and government. He is an Officer of the Order of Canada and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada.

Barry McKinnon has lived in Prince George for 37 years and has been teaching English at the College of New Caledonia since it opened. Over the course of nearly four decades, he has inspired generations of northern writers and added his own poetic voice to the nation’s literary culture. He has authored 15 books of poetry and numerous journal and anthology publications. He has also organized more than 100 readings in Prince George, attracting the likes of Margaret Atwood, Michael Ondaatje, and former Prince George writer Brian Fawcett. He is a past recipient of a BC book award and been short-listed for the Governor-General’s Award for Poetry.

The 2006 honorary degrees will be presented at the annual Convocation ceremony, which will be on Friday, May 26.

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, and BC Premiers Bill Vander Zalm and Mike Harcourt.

Rob van Adrichem, Director of Media and Public Relations, UNBC - 250.960-5622


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