A new term, a new Dean of Science: Dr. Lucila Lee joins UFV in September

With a new term, UFV will also be welcoming in a new Dean of Science; after a grueling hunt for the right candidate, Dr. Lucila (Lucy) Lee will be stepping into the role of Dean of Science at UFV in  September.

Dr. Lee is an experienced university teacher, researcher and administrator, having had faculty appointments in three provinces: Acadia University in Nova Scotia, the Western College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan, and Wilfrid Laurier University (WLU) in Ontario. For the past decade and a half at WLU,  she excelled as both a professor and Department Chair of Biology. She brings not only a wide range of experience but an undeniable passion for the sciences.

“Science, for me, is really fascinating,” Lee explains. “I love biology, computing, math, physics, chemistry ­– I’m excited to inspire that same passion in the students at UFV, and want to bring that love to the communities in the Fraser Valley as well.”

Lee was drawn to UFV because the university is relatively young; she feels that her skills and experience can have more impact on a new, growing and innovative university.  As an internationally respected researcher in fish biology, she is excited about UFV’s focus on undergraduate training.

“I really look forward to drawing more students to UFV, and to helping those students as they grow and choose careers,” Lee explains. “UFV has an excellent reputation among universities, and I’m excited to join that community.”

Dr. Lee is keen to live in Abbotsford. She has lived in several valleys around the world : she was born in the Han River Valley in South Korea and raised on the banks of the Moche River in Peru.  However, she says, the Fraser Valley might be the most beautiful.  As well, her husband is a valley boy who was raised in Maple Ridge, and he too is looking forward to the move.

“Fish are my passion, so moving west to the Pacific and the Fraser river, will give me the opportunity to see the salmon spawning and travelling up to their birth places,” Lee explains. The Fraser River and the Fraser Valley are also a region that directly connects to her research in the effect of pathogens on fish cells.

Eric Davis, UFV’s Provost & Vice-President Academic, says that hiring Lee was the natural choice and he is pleased to welcome her to the UFV team.

“We are extremely fortunate that someone with Lucy’s superb academic record in teaching and research has chosen UFV as her new home,” Davis says.  “The referees’ reports–from superiors, co-workers, assistants, and students–were simply outstanding.  They spoke of her inspirational leadership qualities, energy and work ethic, devotion to the undergraduate student research experience, and prodigious grant-writing and fundraising skills.”

Ian McAskill has served as Acting Dean of Science since May of this year, and when Dr. Lee becomes Dean of Science in September, McAskill will be returning to his position as Senior Advisor in Integrated Planning.

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