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Being dean a 'creative time' for Stephen Elliott

Dr. Elliott steered the Faculty of Education through productive, yet challenging years – and now looks forward to having time to paint.

Stephen Elliott is a visual artist, but he learned his business sense from his father, who taught business and finance and was an industrial engineer for Chrysler earlier in his career. At Chrysler, it was his father's job to find the most efficient ways to do things on the factory floor.

“He would routinely do time studies, measuring how fast specific tasks were being completed. He’d bring that home with him and create games for me and my siblings, such as fastening bolts to a matrix,” says Dr. Elliott. “He would time us completing the tasks, and take his findings back to work. These activities left me with a great interest in making things, being creative in my approach and doing things the best and most efficient way possible.”

It’s this philosophy of doing things efficiently, and creatively, that served him well in his position of dean in the Faculty of Education, a post he held for the past five and a half years and left last month, making way for incoming Dean Rebecca Luce-Kapler.

Stephen Elliott – seen with his painting, Still Life with Lemon, Pepper, and three Kittys – stepped down from his position as dean of the Faculty of Education last month.

Dr. Elliott likens his work as dean to a performance arts piece – pulling disparate parts together in a meaningful way to create a meaningful thing.

“Most of what I did as dean I learned in art school,” says Dr. Elliott, who earned his BFA from Queen’s in 1979, studying printmaking and later working as a master printmaker for noted artists such as André Biéler. “Bringing things together, shaping them — it’s been a great job for me, being dean. I’ve worked with wonderful faculty and staff.”

Dr. Elliott has steered the faculty through productive, yet challenging years. The faculty faces different challenges than other faculties, he explains, because the province regulates enrolment, tuition and program, and recently mandated the change in structure to undergraduate degrees in education from one year to two. Students in the Consecutive Education program now take four successive semesters, beginning in May and ending in August of the following year.

“This new program has just begun, but we think it’s going to be great. Most other programs in the province have the break over the summer, but ours is intensive and puts students into the workforce a full eight months before other programs in the province. It’s really intensive – it drives the experience deeper into their souls.”

In addition to the changes in the BEd program, Dr. Elliott is also proud of the new online master’s program the faculty offers.

Dr. Elliott never expected to work in administration. After his BFA, he worked as a printmaker for a fine art publisher in Toronto and went on to complete a BEd at Queen’s, leading to a career as a high school art teacher. He received his MEd from Queen’s and a decade later finished a PhD in art in education from Concordia University.

After teaching in Gananoque for several years, Dr. Elliott came to Queen’s as a professor in 1989. He became the coordinator of the Art in Community Education (ACE) program, and infused the program with his passion for nurturing the arts in education and in the greater community. While teaching in ACE, he often urged students to go into education administration, because the arts are often underrepresented and not well understood in schools.

“Artists are too busy to waste time in meetings,” he says. “But students need the opportunity to think divergently, differently, and the arts do that. We nurture that.”

In the end, Dr. Elliott, while urging students to pursue administrative roles, was encouraged to do the same himself. A student asked him, at one point, what he was doing in terms of administration. While he always served on committees and boards, he hadn’t actively pursued an administrative position. As he opened himself to the idea, the position of associate dean of undergraduate studies at Queen’s became available. He put his name in, spent one and a half years in that role before taking on the deanship.

“I’ve really enjoyed the experience of being dean. It’s been a creative time for me,” says Dr. Elliott, who continued to teach in the ACE program while leading the faculty. “We have the best programs in the province, and moving forward I think the faculty is in a strong position, with excellent people to lead it.”

Next for Dr. Elliott is a return to painting. He’ll clean out his home studio and see what comes up. The last painting he did before becoming dean used to hang in his office in Duncan McArthur Hall. It’s a still life — a whimsical image of a dog and a table, with a wispy plant sitting in a glass.

While he’s still a systems-oriented, forward-thinking taskmaster (thanks to his father), he’s looking forward to having the headspace to paint, and to taking a more relaxed approach to his art and life. “I hope I become more playful as I get older,” he says, smiling.

 

 

 

 

Familiar face to helm Faculty of Education

Queen’s University recently announced the appointment of Rebecca Luce-Kapler as Dean of the Faculty of Education for a five-year term effective July 1, 2015.

[Rebecca Luce-Kapler]
Rebecca Luce-Kapler will replace Stephen Elliott as the Dean of the Faculty of Education on July 1. (Submitted Photo) 

“We are pleased Rebecca has accepted the principal’s invitation to succeed outgoing dean Stephen Elliott. Her experience as interim dean during the first half of 2014 will serve her well,” says Alan Harrison, Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic). “I should also like to thank Stephen Elliott for his many very significant contributions to the Faculty of Education.”

Dr. Luce-Kapler is currently Associate Dean of Graduate Studies and Research in the Faculty of Education, in which role she has led several important initiatives including the development and implementation of the online Professional Master of Education program.

After being awarded her doctorate by the University of Alberta, Dr. Luce-Kapler came to Queen’s in 1997 as a language and literacy scholar. During her time at Queen’s, she has taught secondary English methods courses and developed writing courses for both B.Ed. and graduate students. She has also taught English as an elementary/secondary school teacher in Alberta, and holds a permanent teaching certificate from that province, in addition to which she is a member of the Ontario College of Teachers.

Her research interests focus on the integral role of literary practices, particularly writing, in the development of human consciousness and identity. This work has contributed to understanding the normative power of cultural forms and the importance of interpretive reading and writing practices for generative learning and teaching.

Dr. Luce-Kapler is also a poet with a number of literary publications, including a poetry collection, The gardens where she dreams.

Visit the Faculty of Education website to learn more about Dr. Luce-Kapler.

Queen’s Faculty of Education develops progressive, ethical, competent and thoughtful leaders in education through teaching, research and professional collaboration. The faculty strives to be a leader in the educational landscape, recognized for its commitment to teaching, international initiatives, innovative programs and influential research.

Lives Lived: A social view of the world and education

Howard A. Smith, B. Sc. (University of New Brunswick, 1964), Educational Diploma, Class I (McGill, 1965), M. A. (University of Toronto, 1969), Ph.D. (University of Toronto, 1972), began his long career in education as a secondary school teacher at Baron Byng High School in what was then the Protestant School Board of Greater Montreal (1965-1967). From 1967 to 1971, he engaged his academic career in the Department of Medicine at the University of Toronto.

[Howard Smith]
Howard Smith

His career at Queen’s University, Faculty of Education, began in 1971 where he became a Full Professor in 2002, and Professor Emeritus in 2008. He served a term as Associate Dean of Undergraduate Programs in the 1990s. His contributions to the Faculty of Education at Queen’s University helped shape the faculty’s vision and program for 37 years.

Howard noted his research interests as: Educational psychology as a science of signs, applied semiotics in learning and education, and multiple “intelligences” or ways of learning Charles S. Peirce. He was the recipient of numerous grants, of which four were from the Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), as either principal investigator or co-investigator. Howard wrote two significant books Psychosemiotics  (2001): Peter Lang, and Teaching adolescents: Educational Psychology as a science of signs (2007): University of Toronto Press. His work was also widely disseminated through peer reviewed journals and national and international conferences.

Howard was an avid outdoor person who enjoyed hiking and other outdoor activities. His interest in photography was paired with his interest in nature. He was a founding director and president of New Leaf Link (NeLL), “a non-profit charitable organization that supports the continuing education and meaningful occupation of youth and adults with developmental disabilities such as autism spectrum conditions, Down syndrome, intellectual disabilities, acquired brain injury, and other neurological conditions” (newleaflink.ca).

Howard’s social view of the world and education made a difference in the lives of many individuals.

- Ann Marie Hill is a Professor at the Faculty of Education. She was a colleague, research partner, and friend of Howard A. Smith.

LIVES LIVED: A passion for mathematics, church and Scottish dance

Doug Crawford, a professor at Queen’s for many years, died Jan. 19, in his 91st year.

Doug Crawford

Doug was born in Scotland, and long maintained his passion for Scottish dancing. However, he immigrated to North America and completed a PhD in mathematics education at the University of Syracuse. In 1962 he joined the Department of Mathematics at Queen’s University, with his focus primarily on math education and secondarily on statistics, and subsequently joined the Queen’s Faculty of Education when it was founded in 1968.

As well as his regular teaching he was heavily involved until his retirement in 1988 in numerous studies and reports on school mathematics (again, often concentrating on statistics), most often in collaboration with the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE). 

Doug was a life-long dedicated churchgoer, usually attending his neighborhood United Church, St. Margaret’s United (later Crossroads United) where his wife Pat sang in the choir, but for a while attended St. George’s Cathedral when one of his sons sang in the boys’ choir there.

Both at work and at church Doug had a wide range of strong opinions, and was not shy about sharing them, but always well-reasoned and articulated (even if not always persuasive).

Doug was a voracious reader with many areas of interest, and this naturally went along with a sharpness of mind that stayed with him right to the end.  Indeed, almost his only complaint about the nursing home where he spent his last years was what he felt was rather a lack of intellectual stimulation.

He lived a full and rich life.

Norman Rice is a retired professor from the Department of Mathematics and Statistics. He was a long-time friend and colleague of Doug Crawford.

Flags lowered for Professor Emeritus Smith

Flags on campus currently lowered for student Madison Crich will remain lowered in honour of Professor Emeritus Howard A. Smith.

His career in the Queen’s Faculty of Education began in 1971 where he became a full professor in 2002, and professor emeritus in 2008. He served a term as associate dean of undergraduate programs in the 1990s. His contributions to the Faculty of Education at Queen’s University helped shape the faculty's vision and program for 37 years.

Dr. Smith's research interests included educational psychology as a science of signs, applied semiotics in learning and education, and multiple "intelligences" or ways of learning. He was the recipient of numerous grants, of which four were from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), as either principal investigator or co-investigator.

He wrote two significant books: Psychosemiotics (2001) and Teaching adolescents: Educational Psychology as a science of signs (2007). His work was also widely disseminated through peer reviewed journals and national and international conferences. 

There will be a celebration of Dr. Smith's life on Sunday, June 28 at the Donald Gordon Conference Centre from 2-4 pm.

Exceptional research showcased in lecture event

The Prizes for Excellence in Research public lectures. Monday, April 27 from 4:30 to 6:15 pm at the School of Medicine, 15 Arch Street.

The Queen's community will have the opportunity to hear from five of the university’s top researchers. The free, public lecture event will see each researcher present a 12 minute overview of their work, so that in just over an hour audience will hear about a gamut of exceptional research from philosophy to nanophotonics to Vitamin D.

The annual Prizes for Excellence in Research public lectures are set for Monday, April 27.

The Prizes for Excellence in Research Public Lectures features the 2014 recipients – Stephen Hughes (Physics), Glenville Jones (Biomedical and Molecular Sciences), John Kirby (Education), Ian Moore (Civil Engineering) and Christine Overall (Philosophy).

An internationally renowned researcher, Dr. Hughes has made a number of outstanding contributions to the field of nanophotonics and quantum optics. In a series of landmark papers Dr. Hughes and his group developed an accurate way to understand the influence of fabrication imperfections on the propagation of light in photonic crystals, and designed a “single photon gun” for use in quantum information processing.

Dr. Jones is a widely respected biochemist and authority in the metabolism of vitamin D, a compound whose dysregulation or deficiency is correlated with a broad spectrum of diseases including osteoporosis, rickets, psoriasis, renal failure, cancer and various hypercalcemic conditions.

Dr. Kirby is one of Canada’s preeminent educational scholars and is most renowned for his contributions related to theories of reading, intelligence and students’ conceptions of learning. He is also cross-appointed to the Department of Psychology and is a member of the Centre for Neuroscience Studies.

Dr. Moore received the award for his achievements in fundamental and applied engineering research and advances in the understanding and design of buried pipes. He is a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering and in 2002 he became the second civil engineer to be awarded a Killam Research Fellowship.

Dr. Overall has made important and diverse contributions to both applied ethics and social philosophy. Her pioneering insights into reproductive ethics, where she has contributed to debates about conception, pregnancy, birthing, and reproductive technologies, continue to be influential. In 1998, Dr. Overall became the first feminist philosopher to be elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada.

For more information on the Prizes for Excellence in Research visit the website.

International search for expertise leads to Queen’s

[Mushtaq Ahmad]
Mushtaq Ahmad, right, a PhD student in education at Northern University Nowshera, has come to the Faculty of Education at Queen’s to study transformational leadership with Dr. Benjamin Kutsyuruba, left. (Supplied Photo)

As he continues to work toward his doctoral degree, Mushtaq Ahmad found that he needed some expert support in his area of study – transformational leadership.

Tri-Colour Globe
Queen's in the World

That search has brought him from Pakistan to Queen’s University.

Mr. Ahmad, a PhD student in education at Northern University Nowshera, has come to the Faculty of Education at Queen’s to study transformational leadership with Dr. Benjamin Kutsyuruba.

The Higher Education Commission in Pakistan offers scholarships to PhD students working with supervisors abroad, so Mr. Ahmad decided to widen his search away from home, and, with a bit of help from Google, he discovered that Dr. Kutsyuruba’s expertise was exactly what he was searching for in a supervisor.

Mr. Ahmad’s research focuses on the impact of transformational leadership styles of principals on the job satisfaction of secondary school teachers. His interest in doctoral research on transformational leadership was piqued by his own experience.

“Transformational leaders eliminate communication barriers existing in an organization and enable effective functioning of the organization. Change is unavoidable in any enterprise and the biggest challenge encountered by any organization is to manage the change effectively,” he explains. “Change, when managed poorly, can deteriorate an organization’s performance and lead to its decline. People who are driven by inspiration perform well when compared with people driven by control. That is exactly what the transformational leaders do.”

He says this leads employees to put in their fullest effort with personal commitment and a sense of ownership, thereby improving the overall productivity, performance and profit of an organization.

In addition to being a PhD student, Mr. Ahmad is a secondary math and science teacher and the president of the Secondary School Teachers Association in the Khyber Pukhtoonkhwa province of Pakistan.

His goal for his visit to Queen’s is to explore avenues for future international collaboration as well as to develop his own academic skills and complete his doctoral research.

The six-month scholarship at the Faculty of Education will allow him to analyze the data he has collected for his dissertation with Dr. Kutsyuruba. Already Mr. Ahmad has found that he made the right choice, for now and for the future.

“My first two months went as smoothly as I wanted it,” he says. “I believe that choosing Queen’s is one of the best decisions I have made in my life and I hope that this campus is up to my expectation. My short-term goal is to be part of a reputed team like Queen’s and long-term goal is to be a good scholar in the future.”

He says that Queen’s offers an international community and services, friendly, cooperative and respectful professors and staff, as well asample opportunity to get involved in academic and extra-curricular activities.

Lives Lived: Dedicated to his community

With a lengthy career in various levels of education, Peter Hennessy was also known for his community efforts over a number of causes, from preserving history to prison and education reform.

[Peter Hennessy]
Peter Hennessy (Photo courtesy Whig-Standard)

After graduating from Campbellford High School in 1944, Hennessy went on to study History and Political Economy at Queen’s University. In 1948 he graduated with honours and went on to attend the Ontario College of Education (1948-49).

He would then teach history at Petrolia District High School (1949-53) and the Port Arthur Collegiate Institute (1953-63) in Thunder Bay, eventually becoming principal (1962-68).

In 1958-59, he and his family lived in England where he completed the requirements for the Diploma in Education at the Institute of Education, University of London.

In 1968, he was one of the original appointments to the Faculty of Education at Queen’s University until his retirement in 1984.

He was a founding member of the Faculty Flyers, a group from the Faculty of Education that began playing poker at monthly get-togethers in the late 1970s and continues to meet. He was the self-appointed historian of the group and would often entertain with his favourite and original limericks.

Hennessy was an avid writer and author with a number of titles to his credit, including: Schools in Jeopardy, Collective Bargaining in Education (1979); The Hennessys of the Bay of Quinte, (1991); Canada’s Big House, the Dark History of the Kingston Penitentiary, (1999); Brother Bill and the Vets, (2001); From Student to Citizen, (2006) (re-titled Democracy in Peril), and a memoir, Escaping North Hastings, (2010).

He also was a regular columnist for the Kingston Whig-Standard (1987-98) on themes of public education and prison reform, and continued to submit op-eds, with the last one published in 2014.

Among Hennessy’s many interests was the history of trains in eastern Ontario.  He seemed to know every old line, the rail beds they travelled on, and the old stations scattered throughout the area.

He also could often be seen on walks with Brandy, his constant companion, a yellow Lab mix, along the shores of Lake Ontario, at Cataraqui Conservation area or the trails north of Kingston.

Hennessy was a long-time volunteer for the John Howard Society and served on the Citizens Advisory Committee at the Kingston Penitentiary, for which he was honoured with the 125th Anniversary of Confederation Medal in 1993.

In his work with the Citizens Advisory Committee, Hennessy was known for meeting with inmates and staff while always trying to find ways to make the prison better either side of the intitution’s walls. Through his meetings with inmates he gained a better understanding of their concerns.

A memorial service is planned for April 3.

– With files from retired Professor Don Campbell.

 

Making a 'major' decision

[Choosing a Major]
Students at Queen's University have a number of resources to help them choose a major, including the first Arts and Science Majors Night this Thursday at Grant Hall.

For university students, choosing a major can be a pressure-filled undertaking, but at Queen’s there is support available.

To help with the decision-making process, Queen’s is hosting its first Arts and Science Majors Night this Thursday at Grant Hall from 5-8 pm, where students can ask questions and learn about each program in the Faculty of Arts and Science.

“Choosing a program is a key decision for students, and it is important to offer them as much information as we can, so they can make an informed choice,” says Vice-Provost and Dean of Student Affairs Ann Tierney. “We have been working to integrate academic and career advising, and this new event is aimed at facilitating access to advice from peers and professional staff about all of the options available and where they can lead.”

Each Departmental Student Council (DSC) will have a booth, where students who have already gone through the process of selecting a major will be available to talk about their experiences in that major.  DSC reps will be in attendance from all Arts and Science programs as well as the Faculty of Education.

Attendees will be able to compare the different programs they are considering and explore if they line up with their interests and future goals.

“Plan selection is both exciting and a little nerve-wrecking. Students often think of it as choosing what you want to do for the rest of your life – now," says Gordon Smith, Vice-Dean,  Faculty of Arts and Science. "We see it more about choosing a great plan for the next three years. We want to make sure students find the best fit for them, both for now and for the long-term. Through our advisors, our events and the many on-campus resources, we hope students know that we are here to help them along their way."

Advisors from Academic Advising, Career Services and Peer Academic Support Service (PASS) will also be available to answer specific questions about choosing a program and where to find career resources at Queen’s.

Majors Night is a partnership between Career Services in the Division of Student Affairs, the Faculty of Arts and Science, the Arts and Science Undergraduate Society (ASUS), and the Arts and Science Departmental Student Councils.

Queen’s also recently created “major maps” for all 44 of its undergraduate programs, making it the first university in Canada to do so.

The maps provide advice on academics, extracurricular activities, networking, international opportunities and career development, providing support before, during and after students earn their degree.

Students can access print versions of the maps through their faculty or department advisers. Career Services has also posted the maps online in web and accessible formats.

The Faculty of Arts and Science also has information that can be found online and posted a new video to help student in the process of choosing a major.

A new way to pay GRAs

Current and former graduate students who received payments as Graduate Research Assistants (GRAs) between 2008 and 2012 could be receiving a tax refund from the Canada Revenue Agency in the next few months.

Effective January 1, 2013, Queen’s has changed the way it pays GRAs, who are typically graduate students who take on research positions that support their studies and provide financial compensation.

Historically, the support GRAs received for their studies was taxed as income from employment and a T4 was issued at tax time.

The university’s decision to change its tax treatment of payments to GRAs was made to reflect the fact that GRA positions are essentially research fellowships, funded directly from research grants awarded to the faculty members who recruit and supervise graduate students.

The change in tax treatment, which is in accordance with the Canada Revenue Agency’s guidelines, makes most GRAs eligible for T4A income (fellowship income) instead of T4 income (employment income).

The change, which aligns Queen’s with practices at other universities, also benefits graduate students by reducing income tax payments and increasing take-home pay. It may make some students eligible for a retroactive tax refund for the 2008-2012 period.

The change does not apply to a GRA if the graduate student held or holds the GRA for financial gain and also was or is performing work not directly related to his or her studies. Such students continue to be classified as employees receiving T4 income. If a graduate student simultaneously holds a GRA directly supporting his/her studies as a trainee and is also a research assistant whose work is not related directly to his/her studies, the student will receive a T4A for income received as a research fellowship, as well as a T4 for the income received as an employee.

Where applicable, the Canada Revenue Agency has agreed to issue retroactive refunds automatically to affected students and alumni and there is no need for anyone to re-file a tax return.

Questions should be directed by email to GRAT4A@queensu.ca

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