TORONTO – The Ontario Confederation of University Faculty Associations (OCUFA) is pleased to announce this year’s recipient of the Henry Mandelbaum Fellowship, Galen Watts from Queen’s University.
“The Mandelbaum Fellowship recognizes graduate students who combine exceptional scholarship with deep engagement in their communities,” said Rahul Sapra, Vice-President of OCUFA. “Each year, we receive so many excellent applications, and this year we feel privileged to award the 2018 Fellowship to Galen Watts.”
A doctoral student at Queen’s University, Galen uses an interdisciplinary perspective to bridge religion, culture, and politics. His doctorial research is timely and complex, exploring the experiences of Canadian millennials who self-identify as spiritual but not religious. His experiences and renewed interest in the academy have led him to consider spirituality and the ways that shifts in social and cultural dynamics influence rising addiction rates, increased mental health concerns, social alienation, and changes to the role community plays our lives.
Galen believes that academia is valuable both as an end in itself and a resource for making positive change in the world. This perspective demonstrates his ongoing commitment to help heal individuals in the community, and in doing so, rejuvenate the community as a whole.
The Mandelbaum Fellowship was established to honour Henry Mandelbaum, Executive Director of OCUFA from 1996-2011. The Fellowship is awarded to a graduate student who has demonstrated academic excellence, shows exceptional academic promise, and has provided significant community service in his or her university career.
“Henry was passionate about social justice, and improving the lives of those who faced formidable social and economic barriers,” said Sapra. “Sadly, Henry passed away in 2012, but we are honoured to continue his work through the Mandelbaum Fellowship.”
Galen Watts will receive the award at a ceremony hosted by OCUFA in Toronto on May 12, 2018.
Founded in 1964, OCUFA represents 17,000 faculty and academic librarians in 28 faculty associations across Ontario. For more information, please visit the OCUFA website at www.ocufa.on.ca.
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