David Sylvester Appointed New USMC President
Sylvester to succeed Mulroney, take office August 1, serve five-year term
Josh Scott EDITOR-IN-CHIEF
Photo: David Sylvester (USMC).
On March 1, 2018, Dr. David Sylvester was appointed the eighth President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of St. Michael’s College (USMC). Sylvester will take office August 1, 2018 and serve for a five-year term. He will succeed current USMC President and Vice-Chancellor David Mulroney, who completes his three-year term in July.
Very Rev. George Terence Smith, C.S.B., Superior General of the Congregation of St. Basil made the appointment. It came at the recommendation of the USMC Collegium (after a special meeting February 15).
“I have known David Sylvester personally for many years, and in my capacity as the Chair of Collegium, I believe I can speak for my colleagues in expressing my great excitement at Dr. Sylvester’s appointment. He has the vision, ambition, and creativity needed to ensure that the University of St. Michael’s College flourishes in the years to come, living out its historic and contemporary mission,” said Fr. Don McLeod, C.S.B., Chair of the USMC Collegium.
Sylvester holds an M.A. and a Ph.D. in medieval history from New York’s Fordham University. Since 2009, Sylvester has served two terms as Principal of King’s University College at Western University, where he has been a tenured Associate Professor in the history department. Prior to working at King’s, Sylvester served 10 years as the founding President of Corpus Christi College and as the Principal of St. Mark’s College at the University of British Columbia.
“I have known David Sylvester personally for many years, and in my capacity as the Chair of Collegium, I believe I can speak for my colleagues in expressing my great excitement at Dr. Sylvester’s appointment. He has the vision, ambition, and creativity needed to ensure that [USMC] flourishes in the years to come, living out its historic and contemporary mission,” said Fr. Don McLeod, C.S.B., Chair of the USMC Collegium.
Sylvester has also been appointed full Professor, Teaching Stream, in the USMC-sponsored Mediaeval Studies program for the Faculty of Arts and Science at the University of Toronto (U of T). Sylvester is a social economic historian. His research focus is toward the nature of community in the middle ages, as well as in how the culture of medieval port towns was shaped by shipping, trade, fishing, and piracy. He has previously taught in the history department at the University of British Columbia, Corpus Christi College, and Fordham University.
Sylvester is the current Chair of the Governance Committee of Universities Canada and a member of the Boards of the Canadian Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences and the Boston College Institute for Administrators in Catholic Higher Education. He is the past Chair of the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities of Canada (ACCUC). Since 2012, he has been the Canadian elected representative to the Board of the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities based in Washington, D.C.
“I am very excited to be coming to St. Michael’s,” said Sylvester, in a USMC media release.“It’s an institution with a storied history and passionate and influential alumni and supporters. St. Michael’s is both an independent Catholic university and a federated partner of one of the world’s leading public research universities. It has a distinctive identity and position in North American higher education, and I have worked with many members of the USMC community throughout my career as both a university administrator and a scholar. Committed to educating the whole person, St. Michael’s provides an opportunity to teach, research and serve out of a 2000-year-old living tradition of inquiry and exploration. I can’t wait to meet my new colleagues and get to work!”