New duo runs Board games
By Adrian Leung
As Western moves forward into the new year, it will do so with two new faces steering the university's top governing body.
New Board of Governors' chair William Peel and new vice-chair Carol Weldon elected last November to the Board for a one year renewable term effective Jan. 1 will have to contend with funding problems to post-secondary education, increasing tuition and decreasing student aid.
"There are some exciting things and challenges at this university and the restructuring proposals within our university provide a challenge to everyone," Peel said.
Weldon added there are some pressing issues facing Western such as the future plans and commitment of the provincial government towards post-secondary education and Western's role in those plans.
"The strategic function of the Board is to address long-term issues and make changes to set Western apart from the rest [of other post-secondary institutions] in the next decade," Weldon said.
Both Peel and Weldon are no strangers to Western's governance bodies.
Peel, 58, has been a member of the Board since 1994 and has served as vice-chair since 1995. His business background comes from 35 years of experience with General Motors and he served as vice-president prior to his retirement in 1995. Peel was a businessman in London for seven years and became involved with the university as a member of the Faculty of Engineering Science Advisory Council.
Weldon, 39, has a degree in agriculture from the University of Guelph and is a chartered accountant in private practice. She has also served as chair of Western's property and finance committee. Since her days as the student union president of Guelph in 1979, Weldon said the fundamental issues facing post-secondary education have remained the same.
"Underfunding, tuition and student aid have always been important issues," Weldon said. "There has been a steady decline of government support, and it is time [for government] to decide on the future of education.
"You can't expect quality without the funding, or at least a greater say in education."
Western's president, Paul Davenport, said he believes Peel and Weldon will do an outstanding job. "Both have been outstanding community leaders and bring a breadth of knowledge of London and a large knowledge of the university to the Board."