Appointment of Professor Jill Matus, Vice-Provost, Students & First-Entry Divisions

PDAD&C#51, 2012-13

To:  PDAD&C 
From:      Cheryl Misak, Vice-President & Provost 
Date:  April 2, 2013 
Re:  Appointment of Professor Jill Matus, Vice-Provost, Students & First-Entry Divisions

I am very pleased to announce that the Executive Committee of the Governing Council has approved the appointment of Professor Jill Matus as Vice-Provost, Students & First-Entry Divisions for a three-year term effective July 1, 2013.

During the past five years as Vice-Provost, Students, Professor Matus has worked closely with divisional partners and student organizations to institute a wide range of new initiatives for assessing and enhancing the student experience. She has provided strong leadership in developing a coherent institutional student recruitment strategy, improving the University's recruitment and admission materials and processes, and initiating important entrance and other scholarship programs. She has successfully reorganized several central offices (for instance, the Centre for International Experience and the Centre for Teaching Support & Innovation) to provide better services.

The change in title, from Vice-Provost, Students to Vice-Provost, Students & First-Entry Divisions, marks an acknowledgement of the need for enhanced coordination and communication among the first-entry divisions across our three campuses. In addition, Professor Matus will continue to oversee the operation, administration and delivery of programs and services in Enrolment Services (Student Recruitment and Admissions), the Centre for International Experience and the Centre for Teaching Support & Innovation, as well as oversee the Division of Student Life Programs and Services on the St. George Campus, including Accessibility Services; Career Centre; Centre for Community Partnerships; Counselling and Psychological Service; First Nations House; Health and Wellness; the Multifaith Centre; Centre for Community Partnerships; Student Housing Service; and Hart House. She will also continue to be responsible for the development and implementation of University-wide policies affecting students.

Professor Matus holds a BA from the University of Witwatersrand, an MA from Columbia University, and a PhD in English from the University of Toronto. She first joined the Department of English as a faculty member in 1987 (at UTSC) and became Discipline Representative for English from 1994. From 2002-2004 she served as Associate Graduate Director in the Department of English. She was Vice-Principal of University College from 2005-08, and Acting Principal in 2007. In 2008, she was appointed Vice Provost, Students. In all of these roles she has shown a deep commitment to the student experience. Upon her initial appointment, the advisory committee in 2007-08 had identified a number of characteristics as essential for this position, all of which Professor Matus continues to demonstrate: for instance, direct experience in undergraduate education, an understanding of the role of college life in the student experience, and a tri-campus orientation.

A Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, Professor Matus has written several books and numerous articles on nineteenth-century British fiction, particularly the work of George Eliot, Dickens, the Brontës, and Elizabeth Gaskell. Her research interests include Victorian conceptions of mind and body and the relationship of the novel to the medical and psychological discourse of its time. A secondary research interest is contemporary African-American literature. She lectures widely internationally and has presented her research at many conferences and seminars.