Starting Aug. 1, Dr. Kofi Campbell will assume the role of Brandon University’s provost and vice-president (academic), taking over for Dr. Steve Robinson, whose term is coming to an end.
According to a Wednesday news release, Campbell is coming to the university from Renison University College in the University of Waterloo, where he served as that school’s vice-president academic and dean since 2017.
"I can’t wait to get to Brandon," Campbell said in this news release. "I love that BU is an established university, yet its size allows faculty and students to develop close working relationships which can lead to exceptional learning and mentoring opportunities."
Campbell said he is particularly drawn to the university’s strong research profile and is looking forward to working with the school’s president, deans and other members of the community to advance their academic programming.
"I am thrilled to welcome Dr. Campbell to Brandon University," president David Docherty said Wednesday. "His thoughtful and thorough approach will be enormously valuable as we embark on a challenging time of building back better."
Outside his current role at Renison University College, Campbell also serves as the special advisor to the anti-racism taskforce at the University of Waterloo headed by that university’s president.
Beyond that, Campbell’s academic career includes a run as associate dean of the Faculty of Liberal Arts at Wilfrid Laurier University, where he taught English and film studies beginning in 2006.
During his time at Renison University College, Campbell also spearheaded a number of initiatives that aimed to modify the school’s academic development and institutional direction.
This includes: planning a national anti-racism conference focused on the higher education sector, helping create a strong first-year experience plan for students and securing five years’ worth of external funding to help consolidate the institution’s studies in Islam program.
Campbell originally came to Canada from Guyana at the age of 10 and lived in Ottawa throughout his undergraduate studies. In 2005, he received his Ph.D. in English literature from the University of Western Ontario.
According to Wednesday’s release, Campbell also describes himself as a tabletop and video game enthusiast who is in the middle of an extensive role-playing campaign that has lasted more than a year.
"Games are a great way to unwind and socialize, and they’re also a great way to learn about people," he said. "We put ourselves in contrived situations with heightened stakes and unrealistic consequences, and we have a lot of fun, but we also end up learning about how to work together, how to solve problems and how to distinguish between important goals and distracting side-quests. I apply these lessons in my own life every day."
Docherty closed out Wednesday’s news release by revealing Robinson will return to a teaching and research role at BU once his term as provost and vice-president academic expires in August.
"Steve leaves the VP’s office in great shape, and BU will continue to benefit from Steve’s guidance and experience."
» The Brandon Sun