In January 2017, I made an exciting move that had me leave my former position as the BC Regional Innovation Chair in Tourism and Sustainable Rural Development to take up the post as the Associate Vice-President of Scholarship, Research and Creative Activity. As much as I wanted the challenge, it was hard to leave my home department of 22 years and a group of amazing colleagues and students. For many, moving into administration when you are at the peek of your academic career signals a pause for your scholarship. I know that I will be occupied in different ways, but my curiosity is not going anywhere so I am hopeful that I will continue to find opportunities to collaborate with other faculty and continue to mentor students in research. In fact, I believe is just as important in this role as it was in my former role. It would be hard to support others in their own research goals if I lost touch with the environment that exists to pursue them.
My hope is that I can continue to contribute to VIU and to the Island region in this leadership capacity. Our unique mandate, combined with the amazing, dedicated and curious people across the institution, provides all the right ingredients VIU needs to continue to evolve in ways that provide transformational learning experiences to students and valuable contributions to the region.