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Prof. Kwong-loi Shun, vice-president and principal, accepts position as chair professor of philosophy at Chinese University of Hong Kong: Professorship traditionally held by world-leading Confucian scholars

Professor Kwong-loi Shun has accepted a position as Chair Professor of Philosophy at the Chinese University of Hong Kong – a professorship traditionally held by world-leading Confucian scholars. Shun will be stepping down from his position as vice-president and principal of University of Toronto at Scarborough effective September 1, 2006.

“Being part of the University of Toronto at Scarborough has been a wonderful experience that I will always regard with fondness. But after 13 years in university administration, the chair professorship presents a unique opportunity to advance scholarship in Confucian studies,” Shun said. “It will also allow me to participate more actively in the shaping of university education in East Asia while maintaining an academic network in North America and Europe.”

Shun has led an important evolution at UTSC in the two-and-half years since becoming vice-president and principal – making the experience of UTSC students a central concern in planning, and overseeing a $150-million dollar expansion of the campus. The campus has recently opened four major academic facilities: the Arts and Administration building, the Management building, the Doris McCarthy Gallery, and renovated science labs. And it has added a range of new facilities that will enhance the student experience, such as a new student centre and an expanded book store. Work is also underway for a new science building – to be completed in 2008– and UTSC is planning another new residence to meet its growing enrolment.

Shun also led the university’s successful efforts to secure a $4-million gift from Tung Lin Kok Yuen, a Hong Kong-based non-profit Buddhist organization focused on inspiring public interest in Buddhism. The gift, the largest in the history of UTSC, will raise the profile of Buddhist studies in Canada by establishing an endowed visiting professorship and creating a series of ongoing conferences and public lectures. Under his leadership, the campus spearheaded recruitment of high school students from China – the first cohort of which arrived at U of T this summer.

“Professor Shun has earned the respect of countless colleagues, staff and students at the University of Toronto for his obvious integrity, commitment to participatory governance, activities as a champion of diversity and international outreach and his focus on the student experience,” said Professor David Naylor, president of the University of Toronto. “Along with many others on all three campuses, we wish him well in his new position”

The university will immediately begin consultations regarding the appointment of an interim principal as well as issue a call for nominations for members of an advisory committee to recommend on the appointment of the next principal.

© University of Toronto Scarborough