Last Wednesday I arrived in Saskatoon, permanently relocating from London, England to take up the post of Program Director at the Gwenna Moss Centre. This is a return to Saskatchewan for me (BSPE 1994) and a new adventure for my British family.
I have been asked several times over the past week how the experience of being back in Saskatchewan has been. Sometimes the question is genuine and sometimes said with a slight tongue in cheek given the minus 30 weather my family and I have been met with alongside the outcomes of the TransformUs report that was made public Monday.
My response, even Monday, was that I am happy to be back. What drew me back to Saskatchewan and to the U of S was not the expectation of an unending summer or an unchanging job for life. What brought me back was the community I was going to become a part of, that of Saskatoon and that of the University. My view from outside the institution was that the U of S was clear in its direction, had backed up its strategy with allocation of resource to support achieving it and, important for me, had made a clear commitment to teaching and learning as a core mission of the institution.
Seeing the response of colleagues and students to the -30 temperature has reminded me and shown my British husband and children the resilience and tenacity of Saskatchewan people. I have been heartened over the past 2 days to see that resilience and tenacity evident in my colleagues in the Gwenna Moss and University Learning Centres.
The TransformUs task force has completed their difficult work and the outcome calls on us to enact our collective agency. We will take the outcome and move constructively forward, continuing to contribute to the life and work of the University and in full support of achieving the vision of the institution. We look forward to participating in the next steps in the TransformUs process and engaging with the opportunities that arise from it.
I am extremely pleased to be back and look forward to working with colleagues across the institution in the months and years to come.