May 20, 2021 – (St. Catharines, ON)
Earlier this week, the GSA, alongside the Brock community, learned of the pending departure of Dr. Gervan Fearon, President and Vice-Chancellor of Brock University for a new opportunity at George Brown College. While this news came as a surprise to the GSA, it provided a moment to reflect on the impact of the last four years and the future direction of the university.
Dr. Fearon’s support for students, even amidst a challenging post-secondary landscape, has been evident throughout his tenure at the university. Over the past fourteen months this commitment to partnership between our respective organizations and members has ensured that the needs of graduate students were heard, and solutions sought. We have appreciated the intent and care behind the actions and approach that Dr. Fearon took over his time at the university.
When asked to reflect on this news, President Yendt shared the following statement:
I have had the pleasure to work with Dr. Fearon in a variety of capacities since his appointment in 2017; first in my role as GSA Vice-President, Finance, then as a member of senate and finally over the last two years as GSA President. I have been consistently impressed with the passion and dedication that Dr. Fearon has brought to his role everyday. [We] have seen significant momentum at Brock over the past four years, and much of this has stems from the leadership of Dr. Fearon. Having worked with three different presidents throughout my time as a student leader, I can say without reservation that the leadership Dr. Fearon has provided our university – whether it is Brock’s Institutional Strategic Plan, addressing issues of Equity and Inclusion or beginning the work of decolonizing our campus – has been critical to the advancement of the institution and bettering the experiences of all students, faculty and staff.
As the Graduate Students’ Association, we want to wish Dr. Fearon the very best as he embarks on this new opportunity. While this new role will undoubtedly be one of challenge, we hope that these are consummately followed with success given all that he has worked so hard to achieve.
Alongside the fore-mentioned news, the GSA warmly welcomes the appointment of Dr. Lynn Wells, current Provost and Vice-President, Academic as Brock University’s Interim President. We support Dr. Wells and are optimistic that she will be able to continue the great work undertaken over the last four years and continue to guide the university towards fulfilling its Strategic Plan. Dr. Well’s student-focused approaches and vision for addressing the concerns of graduate students have been highlighted through numerous initiatives since she joined the university in July 2020. We look forward to continuing our partnership as the GSA moves forward with our own Strategic Plan.