Vancouver, BC, January 20, 2022 –The Board of Directors of Corpus Christi College and St. Mark’s College at UBC is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Gerry Turcotte as the next Principal of St. Mark’s College and President of Corpus Christi College for an initial 5-year term, beginning August 1, 2022.
An experienced post-secondary educator and administrator, Dr. Gerry Turcotte has been President and Vice-Chancellor of St. Mary’s University in Calgary for eleven years and before this was Associate Provost and Executive Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences at the University of Notre Dame in Australia, both Catholic universities. He is the past Chair of the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities in Canada (ACCUC) and Vice-Chair of the Council of Presidents of Alberta (COPPOA). Under his leadership at St. Mary’s University, the school’s enrolment grew by over 100% leading St. Mary’s to become one of the fastest growing universities in Alberta. To support this growth, Dr. Turcotte played a major role in securing significant government and donor funding while also leading two successful strategic planning initiatives.
He is a graduate of McGill University (BA), the University of Ottawa (MA) and the University of Sydney (PhD), which he attended on a Commonwealth Fellowship. He was awarded major teaching awards in Australia, including local, state and national recognitions for excellence in teaching. He was also awarded the Governor General’s Award for Canadian Studies in 2011 and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2013.
“We are honoured and delighted to welcome Dr. Gerry Turcotte to Corpus Christi-St. Mark’s. He is a bold and creative administrator with an inspiring depth of experience in academia. Through his previous roles at Catholic universities, we know of his deep commitment to Catholic higher education. Dr. Turcotte is an accomplished leader who will bring a strategic perspective to the presidency while remaining connected with the strong student-focused roots that define the Colleges,” said Bruno De Vita, QC, Chair of the Presidential Search Committee.
“Corpus Christi College and St. Mark’s Colleges have long, proud histories, and I’m humbled and excited to be joining these dynamic communities,” commented Dr. Turcotte. “The Colleges are known for putting their students first, providing individualized attention and care to their stakeholders, and creating a space of energy and compassion, both inside and outside the classroom. I can’t wait to join this community and to bring what talents I have to the table.”
“The Catholic Intellectual Tradition, which has underpinned the very creation of universities in the first place, is alive and well in the Colleges and I hope to play a major part in supporting and helping to shape the next chapter in the Colleges’ exciting history,” continued Dr. Turcotte.
Dr. Turcotte succeeds Dr. Michael W. Higgins, who is retiring from academic administration in August following an inspiring career as a post-secondary leader. Higgins will continue his highly-regarded work as an author, scholar, educator and columnist.
“On behalf of the Colleges, I wish to thank Dr. Higgins for his contribution to the Colleges,” said Celso Boscariol, QC, Board Chair. “Dr. Higgins stewarded us through a tumultuous pandemic, led a sizable redevelopment of the campus buildings and laid the invaluable foundation for many initiatives that will advance the Colleges.”
“The appointment of Dr. Turcotte marks a new era of development for the Colleges,” continued Boscariol. “We are confident in his ability to fulfill our mission as a community of faith and learning, inspire faculty and staff, and prepare our students to take on the intellectual, professional, and social challenges of our times.”
About St. Mark’s College
St. Mark's College is the affiliated Catholic theological college of the University of British Columbia (UBC).
The College offers a variety of programs including a Bachelor of Arts in Theology and Culture, and Master’s degrees and certificates in Religious Education, Theological Studies, Pastoral Studies and Catholic Educational Leadership. The College also provides the academic component of the Archdiocese of Vancouver’s program of formation for the permanent diaconate. Open to students from all faith backgrounds, the College’s academic programs are rooted in the long-standing and academically rigorous Catholic intellectual tradition.
About Corpus Christi College
Corpus Christi College is a Catholic liberal arts college located in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, offering Associate of Arts degree programs and university-transfer courses in arts, business, and science. Along with small classes and a supportive learning community, the College offers inspirational leadership opportunities, integrated student life and social justice programs. Open to students from all faith backgrounds, the College’s academic programs are rooted in the long-standing and academically rigorous Catholic intellectual tradition.
Christina Dumont (Director, Communications)