http://www.digitaljournal.com/life/lifestyle/ubc-a-global-microcosm-says-gupta-at-president-installation/article/402943

UBC a global microcosm says Gupta at President installation Special

Posted Sep 12, 2014 by AR Vasquez
Arvind Gupta commits to five themes for the University of British Columbia as the 13th President of the venerable institution in his installation speech today.
Professor Arvind Gupta  13th President and Vice-Chancellor of The University of British Columbia
Professor Arvind Gupta, 13th President and Vice-Chancellor of The University of British Columbia
UBC
Digital Journal had the opportunity to attend the installation of Dr. Arvind Gupta as the 13th President of UBC.
In his address, Gupta stated:
"UBC is a Place of Learning:for there is no better tool for personal empowerment than education.
UBC is a Place of Engagement: directly, through our two campuses , and virtually, across the province and around the world.
UBC is an International Place, a global microcosm and a nexus. It is a gateway to the whole social, economic and, we hope, sustainable world.
UBC is a Place of Innovation, ready to address the challenges facing the societies that we serve.
UBC is a Place of Research, a place for plumbing the depths of human understanding and expanding the scope of all human knowledge."
Gupta also pledged to increase funding for research excellence by $100 million. He said the pledge will encourage and improve teaching and learning, build engagement throughout B.C. and the world, foster a vibrant international learning community, and promote innovation.
The theme of the installation was rich with multi-culturalism and included entertaining performances by the Coastal Wolf Pack, the BC Cultural Bhangra Academy, UBC's own Opera Ensemble and UBC Symphony Orchestra, among others.
Elder Larry Grant from the Musqueam Nation gave the opening welcome speech. Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia, Honourable Judith Guichon performed the formal installation of Dr. Gupta as 13th President and Vice-Chancellor of UBC.
One statement that Gupta made that stands out is that "Students come first." His comments were refreshing as he focused on helping students by exploring technology to help provide flexibility for those who need to earn a living while studying, or living across the country or across the world.
"Technology plays a critical role, enhancing the classroom experience and transforming the concept of place for learning. Technology can bring UBC to those juggling career and family demands; to those at a distance from our campuses; to all those seeking a creative outlet or a new path in life." - Dr. Arvind Gupta, UBC President and Vice-chancellor
His candid manner and jovial appreciation of international diversity and willingness to bring UBC up the rankings in the Global community are refreshing but requires a strong UBC commitment to achieve.
"We will stretch this portal–and shrink the world–fostering research-and-learning links across BC, Canada, and beyond."
The goals in his speech may seem lofty but Gupta's determination and entrepreneurial savvy make them reachable. He serves as CEO and scientific director of Mitacs, a national non-profit organization that "builds partnerships between academia, industry, and the world – to create a more innovative Canada."
Gupta has been a UBC professor of computer science since 2009. He has also been a member of the Government of Canada’s Science, Technology and Innovation Council since 2012.
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