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UBC Reports | Vol. 47 | No. 10 | June 14, 2001

Arts dean resigns for U.S. opportunity

Historian cites government's lack of commitment to arts

Arts dean Alan Tully says that one of the primary reasons he is leaving UBC is to pursue another significant academic opportunity.

The 58-year-old professor of American colonial and revolutionary history will leave the university at the end of the year to become head of the History Dept. at the University of Texas at Austin.

"There is a sizable and tangible commitment to the humanities, social sciences and the visual and performing arts in the U.S.," says Tully. "That's not a criticism of the UBC administration -- it's more a reflection of the fact that governments in our country don't pay the attention they should to the liberal arts."

The process of finding a new dean of Arts has begun. "I am committed to finding a successor who will provide the strong, visionary leadership expected of the leading Faculty of Arts in Canada," says vice-president, Academic and Provost, Barry McBride.

Tully was one of five senior historians from U.S., Canadian and British universities who were approached by the University of Texas to help replace the 15 professors it lost last year, most to retirement.

"Alan's resignation is a big loss to the Faculty of Arts and UBC," says McBride. "During his short period as dean he has proven to be a strong, articulate spokesperson for the humanities and social sciences, a strategic thinker and an effective leader."

A former head of the History Dept., Tully was appointed dean pro tem in 1999 and dean the following year.

He replaced former dean Shirley Neuman who resigned in 1999 to accept a position as dean at the University of Michigan. Her resignation prompted the federal government to publicly reaffirm in the House of Commons its support for research in the humanities and social sciences.

Tully joined UBC in 1972 after studying at Queen's University, earning a master's degree in History at the University of Toronto and a master's degree and PhD from Johns Hopkins University.


Last reviewed 22-Sep-2006

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