Volume 93, Issue 98

Tuesday, April 4, 2000


Western bigwigs bring home the big bucks

A brave new world for safety

New dean from down under

VP-research Bill Bridger re-appointed for a second term

Day returns as federal hopeful

New campaign gets million dollar boost



Caught on campus

VP-research Bill Bridger re-appointed for a second term

By John Intini
Gazette Staff

Bill Bridger will remain at the helm of Western's research ship through 2002.

At the Board of Governors meeting last Thursday, it was announced Bridger, who is currently Western's VP-research, would remain at the post through Dec. 31, 2002. His two year contract extension will come into effect New Year's Eve of this year, when his current five year contract expires. Bridger started at Western Jan. 1, 1996.

Bridger described one of his greatest accomplishments over his five years at Western as helping rack up $114 million in research grants from a number of newly created research initiatives, including the Canadian Foundation for Innovation and Canada Research Chairs.

"This is a unique time in our history to be involved in research," he said. "Support is growing leaps and bounds."

Western's president Paul Davenport said Bridger has greatly improved the school's success rate in its quest for funding from large national collaborative projects. Davenport said Western began this quest slowly when the provincial and federal governments started many of these projects in the early to mid-1990s, but under Bridger's leadership, Western has managed to obtain a substantial amount of funding.

Chair of the BOG, Carol McAulay-Weldon, said she was pleased with Bridger's re-appointment. "Research at Western has taken on increased visibility under his leadership," she said.

The committee recommended Bridger look into a few main areas. Davenport said the committee's recommendations included looking into the need for more university support for researchers in the social sciences and humanities, further improvement in competitions for collaborative and individual research grants and the improvement of animal care facilities at Western.

Bridger said he planned to focus on finding a place for the 70 new faculty expected over the next five years from the Canada Research Chair program, which is expected to open up 2,000 faculty appointments across the country.

As well, Bridger said he planned on spending a great deal of time ensuring the university and city's animal care facilities are renovated and up to standards.

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Copyright The Gazette 2000