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OAC names deans for research, academics

The University of Guelph’s Ontario Agricultural College (OAC) has named its associate deans for research and innovation and for academic programming.

Beverley Hale of OAC’s school of environmental sciences will serve as associate dean (research and innovation), and Jonathan Schmidt, also an environmental sciences faculty member, as associate dean (research), both for five-year terms effective immediately, OAC announced Friday.

Hale, as associate dean (research and innovation), will handle issues relating to all graduate programs within OAC, including oversight of various OAC research and graduate programs.

In the new role, Hale is also tasked with research and business planning activities, development of research support programs, and liaising with client organizations and industries to build business development and training opportunities, OAC said.

Hale, who has her Ph.D. in plant physiology from Guelph and bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Toronto, has been on OAC’s faculty since 1990, most recently as acting chair for the department of land resource science.

Schmidt, as associate dean (academic), is responsible for all aspects related to diploma and undergraduate programs, including student advising, program development and budget oversight on all four OAC campuses (Guelph, Alfred, Kemptville, Ridgetown).

The job also involves co-ordinating OAC’s academic governance process and leading the development of “innovative delivery mechanisms for both traditional and non-traditional educational programs.”

Schmidt, who has B.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Toronto, returned to OAC’s faculty in 2004 after a stint in the biotech industry. His past research has focused on issues related to integrated pest management, forest ecology, drug discovery and human health, OAC said.

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