Many academic institutions automatically elevate faculty to professor emeritus status upon their retirement. At the Université de Montréal (UdeM) the process is more selective. Through an internal nomination process, a handful of former UdeM faculty are identified, vetted and eventually chosen as permanent faculty members of the 135-year-old institution.
This year our Dean André Roy was honoured as a professor emeritus at UdeM in from a field narrowed down to fewer than ten former faculty. “I am really pleased with this,” says Dean Roy humbly. “It is a great thing.”
Dean Roy served as a professor in the Département de Géographie of the Université de Montréal from 1982 to 2011. His administrative experience included serving as Head of his department for seven years and as Associate Dean of Research at the Faculty of Arts and Sciences. Dean Roy also held the Canada Research Chair in Fluvial Dynamics from 2003-11.
While he can’t be absolutely certain why he was chosen above other worthy candidates, Dean Roy guesses it has something to do with his rounded approach to education.
“What I have tried to do in my career is get the right balance between teaching, research and service,” says Dean Roy. “You try your best all the time. I have had quite a few teaching awards. I’ve been productive in research and I have done many years of service. It is a total package. In my case, it was the whole slate of what a professor needs to do.”
In his time as an academic Dean, Roy has published more than 150 peer-reviewed articles in a wide range of journals including Nature, and has supervised more than 50 graduate students. The excellence of his teaching has also been recognized through awards from the Université de Montréal (1996) and from the Canadian Association of Geographers (1999). Dean Roy has been active in the scientific community as president of the Canadian Association of Geographers (2002-2004) and as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Canadian Foundation for Climate and Atmospheric Research.
Having joined the University of Waterloo as Dean of the Faculty of Environment in August 2011, Dean Roy has helped Environment become one of the most exciting faculties at Waterloo. However, when his time at Waterloo comes to an end, having emeritus status at the school where he earned his undergraduate degree, in a city he hoped to retire in, is a great benefit.
“As emeritus you can actually teach one course and you can have your research funds and everything,” he explains. “It means that you are officially an associate of the university forever.”
Photo courtesy of Université de Montréal