Our new website – a pivotal asset for UTM

February 6, 2012

It was fun waking up to a brand new UTM website this morning. But there is more than just fun to this new window we have to the world. Let’s reflect back for a moment.

TEDx comes to UTM

May 7, 2012

On May 3, I spent an exhilarating day at ‘TEDx Youth@Mississauga’ ( – the first TEDx conference hosted at UTM to a packed 500-seat auditorium at our brand new Instructional Centre. “TED”, for those who may not have been exposed, is an acronym for ‘Technology, Education, and Design’, and are conferences, held twice a year, that bring the world’s most fascinating thinkers and doers to share their “ideas worth spreading” in 18 minutes or less (

UTM’s BOUNDLESS Campaign: My not-so ‘hidden agenda’

May 24, 2012

After months or planning and preparations, we finally launched the University of Toronto Mississauga (UTM) chapter of the BOUNDLESS Campaign yesterday afternoon. What an inspiring spectacle!

UTM and the Community

November 7, 2012

I spent a good part of Monday afternoon with Mayor McCallion, talking about the intertwined relationship between UTM and the City of Mississauga. While we see this relationship come to life every time thousands show up for an event such as the Run for the Cure or Jane Goodall lecture, I wonder how many people drive daily up and down the Mississauga Road actively think about what lies behind the thick wall of trees enveloping the campus or how it impacts the community.

UTM’s economic impact: $1.3 billion and beyond

April 23, 2013

Hidden behind the camouflage of trees lining the Mississauga Road, UTM has been writing quite a story of the proverbial town-and-gown partnership over the past 46 years. We’ve known intuitively that this partnership is an important one, and members of our community would readily say that UTM is a significant contributor to the local economy.

But how significant?

Name that building!

June 18, 2013

The first phase of re-construction of the North Building is progressing at a remarkable speed. It will actually be a free-standing building linked at two levels to the remainder of the old North Building.  I would encourage you to take a walk around the outside of the site to see the progress and get a sense of how large this project is, replacing what was two stories with four and on an expanded footprint.  The main floor will include new and expanded food services, open and bookable study spaces, and rehearsal facilities for the Theater and Drama program.

Sustainability Management – The smarts of doing ‘business NOT as usual’

September 16, 2014

There’s much new this year on the campus: the Deerfield Hall we celebrated yesterday; the Innovation Complex to house the new Institute for Management and Innovation; Spiegel Hall reborn as the physics teaching lab; a fresh new look and expansion for the OPH cafeteria; and much more… These are the obvious visible signs of change, but there’s one development that has probably not been noticed as widely – the launch of our latest professional master’s program in Sustainability Management.

Earth’s climate is changing rapidly, and there’s now a consensus among informed minds that human activity is at the root of this change. The weight of scientific evidence also tells us that we have very little time left before the runaway consequences of these changes would likely escape our ability to control them. This is on top of the broader human-induced environmental degradation. We know that the vast majority of human impacts on the global environment originate directly or indirectly from our commercial activities. So we are faced with a conundrum: The lifestyle we so love is in mortal peril without a drastic shift in our ways, and yet changing those ways appears to be so hard, if not impossible, without destroying the system that gave us this lifestyle in the first place.

Fundamental and applied research – where’s the border?

November 7, 2014

Unless you are into tropical diseases, you’ve probably not heard of Dr. Satoshi Ōmura. I hadn’t—not until last week, when I attended the 2014 Gairdner Awards ceremony at the Royal Ontario Museum. Dr. Ōmura is a Distinguished Emeritus Professor at Kitasato University in Japan. His lifelong passion has been to search for new microbes wherever he could find them.

Happy holidays! We have much to celebrate!

December 19, 2014

Happy Holidays, UTM—I wish you a most wonderful time with your loved ones!

While you enjoy the festivities and good life during this special time of the year, I hope you won’t forget to also unplug every now and then, rest a bit and recharge. You all surely deserve some R&R after what seems like a year of non-stop torrent of activity. And do also take a moment to pat yourself on the back for your part in helping to make 2014 a banner year for UTM.

Happy to be back and looking forward

January 11, 2016

What a delightful week #1 back at the office!

I have to admit; the six-month break was exactly what I needed after an intense decade in administration, first at Waterloo, then here since 2010. Super-humans as we like to think we are, we all need a diversion from the routine every now and then. For me the most urgent need was to find some time to reflect.

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