A name and face familiar to many Newfoundlanders and Labradorians, Dr. Noreen Golfman, is Memorial University’s new provost and vice-president (academic). Dr. Golfman’s appointment was approved by the Board of Regents on March 26, 2015, and is effective immediately.
“Memorial will certainly benefit from Dr. Golfman’s passion, experience and engaging leadership style,” said Dr. Gary Kachanoski, president and vice-chancellor. “Her commitment to fundamentals -- teaching and learning, research and public engagement – impressed the search committee, and I look forward to working with her in the months and years to come.”
Memorial first implemented its current provost structure in 2010. Dr. Golfman replaced the outgoing provost and vice–president (academic) in an acting capacity in September 2014. Prior to that, from 2008-14 she served as dean of Memorial’s School of Graduate Studies. A professor of English, Dr. Golfman holds a PhD from the University of Western Ontario, and began teaching at Memorial in 1984. She is also actively engaged in national boards and foundations aimed at enhancing higher education, research and the arts.
Dr. Golfman said she is excited by the challenges and opportunities that the role presents.
“I am proud to have been associated with Memorial for the past three decades in a variety of roles and I am ready to tackle this dynamic senior leadership post. The next five years will be a time of both challenge and opportunity for the province’s university and I am keen to be part of the leadership team that will help Memorial address the issues head on.”
The provost and vice-president (academic) is the chief academic officer of Memorial University with overall responsibility for all academic matters, including the development and delivery of programs to more than 18,000 undergraduate and graduate students across a wide range of disciplines.
Dr. Golfman was selected following an intensive national search by a committee that represented the university and the community.
Dr. Noreen Golfman served as dean of graduate studies at Memorial from June 2008 to September 2014, when she was appointed provost and vice-president (academic) pro tempore. Under Dr. Golfman’s leadership, the School of Graduate Studies experienced tremendous growth. In the last decade, the number of graduate students has doubled to a total of 3,565 graduate students. A number of new programs were created during her term as dean, including five new doctoral programs and eight new master's programs.
A professor of English, Dr. Golfman holds a PhD from the University of Western Ontario. She recently served two terms as president of the Canadian Federation of Social Sciences and Humanities, a national education advocacy group. She has just completed her terms as president of both the Canadian Association of Graduate Studies and the Northeastern Association of Graduate Schools. She is currently a member of the advisory committee to the Canadian studies program at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
Active in Canadian cultural issues and experienced with the media, Dr. Golfman is the founding director and chair of the St. John's International Women's Film Festival, vice-chair of the Newfoundland and Labrador Film Development Corporation and chair of the board of the Friends of Canadian Broadcasting. Since 2011 she has co-chaired the board of directors of Business and the Arts NL, an organization that brokers relationships and funding between the arts and the corporate/private sectors.
In addition to publications in scholarly journals, Dr. Golfman writes on the arts and culture in popular venues, and she has worked as a commentator, reviewer/performer for CBC radio and television.
In 2011 she received the President’s Award for Exceptional Community Service from Memorial University.
Provost/vice-president (academic) portfolio description
The provost and vice-president (academic) (VP(A)) is the chief academic officer of Memorial University with overall responsibility for all academic matters, including the development and delivery of programs to more than 18,000 undergraduate and graduate students across a wide range of disciplines. The role is responsible for fostering a positive learning and working environment for faculty and students, and leads recruitment, promotion, tenure and recognition processes to attract and retain top-quality faculty.
Primary responsibilities include:
- overseeing pan-university initiatives and ensuring that decisions align with Memorial’s mission and strategic priorities;
- setting goals that are integrated across academic and administrative units; and
- ensuring university planning and budgets align with academic priorities.
The provost and VP(A) is a member of the Board of Regents and chair of the Vice-Presidents Council (VPC). The role reports to the president and vice-chancellor and works in close collaboration with the other four vice-presidents, deans, directors and other members of the senior management team of the university. The provost and VP(A) also oversees the portfolios of the deputy provost and associate vice-president (academic), undergraduate studies; the associate vice-president (academic), faculty relations; and the associate vice-president (academic), planning, priorities and programming.