The University of Alberta Senate has a community outreach recognition program called Beyond These Halls. Recognizing the efforts of 110,000 community service hours in a single year (2006) is an incredibly important honour. Not only do these many, many volunteer hours credit the University's outreach and its vibrant push to bring the University to the community, but they also represent a huge willingness on the part of the community to participate in university life. It’s a win-win situation. If the Senate is extremely proud of the vital activities taking place beyond the University's halls, so too are community leaders.
The Senate Exemplary Service Award, presented by the Chancellor and the Senate, recognizes an exemplary spirit of volunteerism. Two recent recipients of this award are the student group of the World University Service of Canada, for work on the Student Refugee Program and Mr Lino Ramirex, a Faculty of Engineering PhD candidate who volunteered time to a program that created awareness about free educational software in Venezuela.
Mayor Stephen Mandel has recently awarded the City of Edmonton’s Civic Engagement Award to the Student Health Initiative for the Needs of Edmonton Clinic. This award recognizes an individual whose impact on community life in Edmonton is significant and positive.
The Edmonton Journal’s Media Relations Award has been presented to professors for their willingness to shed light on contemporary issues, including law issues addressed by Dr Sanjeev Anand and political science issues addressed by Dr Wenran Jiang.
The Student’s Union has presented its Students’ Union Rising Star Award in recognition of student contributions outside the university community. It was recently granted to Ms Elena Jacobs of the School of Native Studies and to Ms Shawna Pandya of the Faculty of Science.
All of these activities contribute to the development of community and University leaders and to the promotion and betterment of our civil society.
In March 1906, when the Alberta Legislature met under Premier Mr Alexander Cameron Rutherford, it passed an act to establish the University of Alberta in Edmonton. The act provided for ten appointed members and five elected members of the Senate. In the second session of the Legislature, in 1907, the University Act was amended to add to the Senate the President or Acting President.
Today, the Senate is an independent advisory board that brings together the University and the public. Through the Senate, concerns from members of those communities may be brought to the University. By maintaining and promoting the University’s traditions, and celebrating its achievements, the Senate strives to "successfully examine, foster and celebrate the achievements and excellence of the University of Alberta, resulting in enhanced linkages internally, provincially, nationally and internationally" (University of Alberta Senate Vision Statement).
There are six standing committees of the Senate: Executive, Honorary Degrees, Nominating, Internal Affairs, Provincial Affairs, and National and International Affairs. Through the work of these committees, the Senate applies its collective wisdom to act as an objective conscience of the University.
Meetings of the Senate, chaired by the Chancellor, are held four times per year for a half a day. Members of the public and of the University are welcome to attend as the meetings consider current issues in post-secondary education.
From time to time, issues arise into which the Senate desires an in-depth look. Task force committees consisting of members of the Senate and of stakeholders and/or experts in the field at issue are formed. Examples of past task forces include student engagement, wellness, degrees of opportunity, success by degrees, international dimensions, and technology in learning. Task force committees research their topic, write a report with recommendations, and present this report to the Board of Governors, General Faculties Council, and Alberta’s Minister of Advanced Education. A complete list of reports is available at the Senate’s website.
The Senate’s budget, provided by the Board of Governors, assists the Senate in meeting the costs of staff, supplies, and other expenses in incurs in fulfilling its duties. The Senate may seek funding for any project that furthers its work. In addition to the work already described, the Senate strives to promote awareness of student issues, guard University traditions, assist with recruiting top students, and assist with keeping excellent faculty.
|Chancellors of the University of Alberta Senate|
|2004–||Eric P. Newell|
|2000–2004||John Thomas Ferguson|
|1998–2000||Lois Elsa Hole|
|1994–1998||Louis Davies Hyndman|
|1990–1994||Sandy Auld Mactaggart|
|1986–1990||Tevie Harold Miller|
|1978–1982||Jean Beatrice Forest|
|1974–1978||Ronald Norman Dalby|
|1970–1974||Louis Armand Desrochers|
|1964–1970||Francis Philip Galbraith|
|1958–1964||Laurence Yeomans Cairns|
|1952–1958||Earle Parkhill Scarlett|
|1946–1952||George Fred McNally|
|1927–1942||Alexander Cameron Rutherford|
|1926–1927||Nicolas Dubois Dominic Beck|
|1908–1926||Charles Allan Stuart|