Eleven honorary degrees awarded at Spring 1998 convocations


Published: 27May1998

Approximately five thousand students will receive their hard-earned certificate, bachelor, master’s, and doctoral degrees this spring from McGill University. Among them will be 45 Cree teachers, who form the first cohort to graduate from the Aboriginal Literacy Education program. The purpose of this innovative program is to enhance the ability of practitioners to teach in their native language. Courses are developed by McGill professors and taught in several northern Quebec communities by local instructors in Cree. A large contingent of the graduates and their families is expected to attend the Faculty of Education convocation ceremony, which starts at 9:00 a.m. on June 8 at Place des Arts in Montreal.

Honorary degrees will be conferred on eleven eminent leaders in their fields at the Spring Convocations. Fifteen McGill faculty members will also be honoured by being designated as professors emeriti. Several ceremonies will take place from May 27-June 9, 1998 as follows:

Health Sciences: Wednesday, May 27, 1998, 3:00 pm, Place des Arts

D.Sc. Martha Cook Piper, Ph.D., President and Vice-Chancellor, The University of British Columbia. Former student, professor and senior administrator at McGill, Dr. Piper has served on the National Advisory Board on Science and Technology as well as numerous other important scientific bodies before taking up the position as head of one of Canada’s leading academic institutions in 1997.

Dr. Piper will speak at the ceremony

D.Sc. Sol Silverman, D.D.S., Professor, School of Dentistry, University of California, San Francisco. In the words of the dean of McGill’s Faculty of Dentistry, Dr. J. P. Lund, he "has attacked the most difficult and important dental problems of each decade and become the authority in each". Few clinical researchers are more acknowledged internationally than Dr. Silverman for expertise in two of the most important health problems of the century: cancer and AIDS.

Law: Friday, June 5, 1998, 9:30 am, Pollack Music Hall

No honorary degrees.

The speaker will be Justice Frank Iacobucci, Supreme Court of Canada.

Agricultural & Environmental Sciences: Friday, June 5, 1998, 2:30 pm, Macdonald Campus

D.Sc. Alex F. McCalla, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus, University of California (Davis), Director, Rural Development, The World Bank. This Canadian citizen, born and educated in Alberta, is a highly respected agricultural economist with a strong international reputation for his work in the areas of agricultural policy, trade and development. Dr. McCalla will speak at the ceremony.

Education/Engineering: Monday, June 8, 1998, 9:00 am, Place des Arts

LL.D. Maxine Greene, Ph.D., Professor of Philosophy and Education, William F. Russell Professor in the Foundations of Education (Emerita), Columbia University.B.A., M.A., Ph.D, Emeritus Professor of Philosophy and Education, Teachers College, Columbia University. Dr. Greene was the founder and first Director of the Centre for Social Imagination, the Arts, and Education at Teachers College. She has heightened the awareness of students, parents, and teachers regarding the importance of the arts in the education of individuals across all ages.

D.Sc. Robert Gung Hong Lee, B.Eng., Independant Technical Advisor, Canadian Liquid Air. Ltd. A McGill graduate in metallurgical engineering, Mr. Lee is the author or co-author of 20 inventions, leading to 200 patents worldwide. One invention, the "shrouded tuyere" method, developed with Guy Savard, has changed the way steel is made all over the world.

D.Sc. Wilson K. L. Wong, B.Eng., Co-founder, Raymond Industrial Ltd. Mr. Wong is a McGill graduate (1959) and successful businessman. In an enduring and unassuming manner Mr. Wong has made major contributions to the development of education and health services both in China and abroad.

The speaker will be Prof. Derek Drummond, Vice-Principal, Development and Alumni Relations, McGill University.

Science/Continuing Education: Monday, June 8, 1998, 2:00 pm, Place des Arts

D.Sc. Kelvin K. Ogilvie, C.M., Ph.D., D.Sc., F.C.I.C., President and Vice-Chancellor, Acadia University. One of the world’s leading experts on biotechnology, bio-organic chemistry, and genetic engineering, Dr. Ogilvie is responsible for the development of the "gene machine" and for the invention of Ganciclovir, a drug used in more than 40 countries to fight infections that occur when a person’s immune system becomes weakened. Under the direction of this former McGill professor, Acadia University has become a leader in education and an institution to watch in the future. Dr. Ogilvie will speak at the cermony.

Arts (graduate)/Social Work/Management/Music/Religious Studies: Tuesday, June 9, 1998, 9:00 am, Place des Arts

D.Litt Michael Mann, D.Phil., Professor, Department of Sociology, UCLA. The sophistication and range of this author have led many of his colleagues to regard him as the most important sociologist since Max Weber. An expert in social stratification, he exerts an influence throughout the larger community of the social sciences and the humanities.

D.LITT Amartya Kumar Sen, Ph.D., Lamont University Professor and Professor of Economics and of Philosophy, Harvard University. Highly respected by his peers as a fine technical economist, Dr. Sen is also world renowned for his extraordinary abilities to see economic issues in the broader context of "real life" and to present these issues very effectively to a lay audience. Dr. Sen will speak at the ceremony.

Arts (undergraduate): Tuesday, June 9, 1998, 2:00 pm, Place des Arts

D.Litt. Noam Chomsky, Ph.D., Institute Professor and Professor, Department of Linguistics and Philosophy, Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Celebrated as a pre-eminent contributor to modern linguistic theory, Dr. Chomsky is also widely followed as one of the most thoughtful and challenging social critics of our times.

D.Litt. Marc AdÇlard Tremblay, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus, Department of Anthropology, Laval University. One of Canada’s senior and most distinguished anthropologists and social scientists. As dean of graduate studies at Laval from 1971 to 1979, Dr. Tremblay played a major role in the important structural changes that took place in the university during that time. Dr. Tremblay will speak at the ceremony.