Sauvé's dynamic dozen

Sauvé's dynamic dozen McGill University

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McGill Reporter
January 16, 2003 - Volume 35 Number 08
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Sauvé's dynamic dozen

Bring on the visionaries.

The Sauvé Scholars Foundation and McGill University are seeking 12 dynamic intellectuals from a variety of disciplines to help change the world. A new residential program called the Sauvé Scholars has been created to sharpen the skills of young adults who wish to devote their lives to improving societies around the globe.

The first Sauvé Scholars, the majority of whom will be recruited from developing countries, will arrive at McGill in September 2003. Deadline for all applications is March 1, 2003.

Heather Munroe-Blum, McGill principal and vice-chancellor, is delighted that the university has been selected as the launching pad for the Sauvé Scholars program.

"These new scholarships will give young people from around the world an extraordinary opportunity to broaden their horizons, as well as deepen their educational experience," she says. "Moreover, this initiative is sure to heighten the international profile of Quebec and Canada among the young leaders of the future."

The Sauvé Scholarships will be a Canadian first, where scholars will benefit from open-door access to all courses and programs at McGill. Sauvé Scholars will not write exams and they will not earn academic credit. Instead, they will be invited to McGill for nine months to research, reflect, question and enlarge their understanding of the world and their roles in effecting positive change.

The Sauvé Scholarships were loosely modelled on two similar U.S. programs: the Harvard University Neiman Fellowships and the Journalism Fellows of the University of Michigan. Sauvé Scholars will also be expected to have an active interest in media. Indeed, the program will provide intimate weekly seminars with eminent journalists, as well as political figures, academics and arts and business innovators.

"What's exciting about the Sauvé Scholarships is how they will enable the mixing of different worlds," says Martha Crago, associate vice-principal (teaching programs). "For instance, this program will offer young reporters with an interest in science a unique opportunity to deepen their knowledge of the field."

Candidates will need to be in the early stages of their career and will be selected by the Jeanne Sauvé Foundation, which established the scholars program, and McGill. The university will also allow qualified scholars an opportunity to register as masters, Ph.D. or post-doc students if they wish. McGill will even assign mentors to look after Sauvé Scholars.

"McGill is a big place to get around," explains Crago, saying mentors will help scholars find the people or resources they need both on and off campus.

Each scholar will be awarded a stipend valued at about $30,000 Canadian for travel, tuition, housing, meals and supplies. The program will cover the costs of group excursions to academically and culturally stimulating sites in the northeastern United States, as well as adventures in Canada's North.

"Above all, the program will be a fun, challenging experience in an intellectually stimulating environment," says Harry Parnass, president of the Sauvé Scholarship Foundation. "It will be a year of incredible personal growth."

Scholars will be housed in an old mansion on Dr. Penfield Ave. that is owned by the Sauvé Scholarship Foundation. The home is currently being refashioned into 12 studio apartments, as well as common rooms appropriate for scholarly exchanges.

In agreement with the wishes of the Jeanne Sauvé Foundation, about 75 percent of Sauvé Scholars will be recruited from outside North America.

"We're searching for a diverse group of young people from all continents: North America, South America, Europe, Africa and East Asia," says Parnass. "We're especially keen on applicants from developing countries to give each of the Sauvé Scholars an opportunity to mix with people of varying backgrounds."

All Sauvé Scholars will be expected to publish during or immediately after their residences. Materials will be issued at sauvescholars.org, a website that will become a platform for a broad range of critical exchanges. Other Sauvé Scholars will generate hard-copy documents -- videos, texts or photo essays -- for worldwide dissemination and discussion.

"Using the web to publish the work of scholarship fellows is a brand-new concept," says Parnass. "Our scholars will not only be scholars -- they'll be communicators. They will produce materials at sauvescholars.org that will shake things up."

The Sauvé Scholars Foundation was established following a $10 million bequest by the late Jeanne Sauvé: a pioneering journalist and politician who was Canada's first female Governor General, the country's first female Speaker of the House of Commons and Quebec's first female member of Parliament. Before her death, Sauvé created her foundation to address one of her chief concerns: "Provide young leaders of the future with an outlet to be heard; a place to develop their potential."

The Sauvé Scholars Foundation is under the direction of Jeanne Sauvé's son, Jean-François Sauvé. Its mission is to develop promising youth from around the world into tomorrow's leaders.

McGill was chosen as the host university for the program, says Parnass, "Because McGill is the only Canadian university with the international reputation and credentials to recruit scholars from around the globe."

For more information on the Sauvé Scholarships, please consult www.sauvescholars.org.

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