Provost's Welcome

Welcome to Carleton University and the web page for the Office of the Provost and Vice-President (Academic).

It is with great enthusiasm that I assume the role of Interim Provost and Vice-President (Academic) following a period of tremendous growth at Carleton and during the celebration of our 75th anniversary year. Although this is a time of transition at the university, my focus is to ensure continuity between the progress of the past few years and our ambitious plans for the future. My predecessor in this position, Dr. Peter Ricketts, led the launch of an impressive list of new academic programs, as well as a number of significant academic initiatives that have contributed to a harmonious atmosphere at the university and excellence overall. His outstanding achievements in higher education throughout Canada, and during his time as Provost at Carleton, culminated in his appointment as President and Vice-Chancellor at Acadia University. I wish him the best as he settles into this new role.

As our departing President Dr. Roseann O’Reilly Runte noted in “From Defining Dreams to Building Sustainability,” a report she shared before leaving Carleton to become President of the Canada Foundation for Innovation, the number of students soared to 34,539 from 27,542 over the past nine years. Over the same span, annual funding from the Tri-Council rose from more than $18 million to more than $24 million, the number of publications produced each year nearly doubled, and new Chairs were established including the Jarislowsky Chair in Global Health and Waste Water Management, the Royal Hospital Chair in Culture, Gender and Mental Health Research, the Helmut Kallmann Chair in Canadian Music, and Fulbright Chairs in Entrepreneurship and Public Affairs in North America: Society, Policy, Media. Between 2008 and 2017, the university also created 74 new academic programs aligned with Carleton’s key strengths, which include the environment; health; digital and information technologies; global affairs; and business, entrepreneurship and governance. These reflect our ability as an interdisciplinary institution to work across fields in unique ways.

Guided by Carleton’s Strategic Integrated Plan (SIP), and its emphasis on sustainable communities and global prosperity, our evolution and efforts to help address local, regional, national and international challenges will continue. The SIP is structured around four main themes: Programs for Today and Tomorrow, Research Excellence and Connectedness, Organizational Excellence, and Productive and Engaged Students. All four are aimed at the overarching goal of ensuring that Carleton is known at home and abroad as a leader in collaborative teaching and learning, research and governance.

It is the latter theme, Productive and Engaged Students, that is driving innovative changes at the university. To connect students to the broader community, both to inspire them to contribute to society, and to enhance their employability, we are expanding opportunities for experiential learning. These initiatives reach across a wide range of faculties and disciplines, from our recent partnership with Ottawa-based e-commerce leader Shopify that sees a group of undergraduate computer science students working at the firm’s downtown headquarters throughout their four-year degrees, to our new Graduate Diplomas in Curatorial Studies, which feature co-op placements at national galleries and museums.

Carleton’s Lead To Win program, one of the top university business incubators in North America, encourages students from every discipline to make a difference through entrepreneurship. In celebration of Carleton’s 75th anniversary, our students are collaborating on a project to build a birch bark canoe using traditional materials and methods, giving them an opportunity for cross-cultural and experiential learning. Our business, engineering and industrial design students are involved in an award winning initiative collaborating with NGOs and residents to develop water purification and storage solutions for a drought-impacted region of Tanzania. And our Graduate Program in Political Management not only gives students the practical experience they need to step into rewarding careers but also promotes professionalism and ethical standards in Canadian politics. Collectively, initiatives such as the above create an environment where everybody can prosper and succeed. I look forward to continuing to increase opportunities for students to engage in experiential learning during their studies at Carleton.

Whether you are from Ottawa, other parts of Ontario, Canada, or beyond, I urge you to consider Carleton for your post-secondary studies. Our faculty, staff and students, combined with our outstanding programs, student-centred values, experiential learning opportunities, and our dynamic location in Canada’s National Capital Region, are what make Carleton a truly outstanding university. Explore our website, then explore Carleton for yourself.

Jerry Tomberlin, BS, MPH, AM, PhD
Interim Provost and Vice-President (Academic)