MacEwan University congratulates Dr. Kristopher Wells, associate professor in the Bachelor of Child and Youth Care program, on being named a Canada Research Chair (CRC) in Sexual and Gender Minority Youth Issues. The CRC program was established by the Government of Canada to attract and retain world-class researchers and to reinforce academic research and training excellence in Canadian post-secondary institutions.
This is MacEwan’s first-ever Canada Research Chair, and the university looks forward to the incredible work that Kris will continue to do given the funding and support provided by the prestigious position.
“The awarding of our first Canada Research Chair marks the further maturation of MacEwan as an undergraduate university,” says Dr. Craig Monk, provost and vice-president, Academic. “We are proud that Dr. Kristopher Wells has been recognized as an emerging scholar of exceptional achievement and further promise, and his influence is felt throughout Alberta and beyond.”
Kris’s Tier II Canada Research Chair (which grants $500,000 in total over the next five years) will focus on three key areas in support of the public understanding of sexual and gender minority youth by investigating and supporting inclusive and responsive policies, developing equitable and evidence-informed practices, and encouraging the full and equitable participation of LGBTQ2S+ youth in all aspects of our society.
“I strongly believe that research can be used as a catalytic force to both serve and benefit the public good.”
—Dr. Kristopher Wells
Kris says that he hopes to develop new courses, create research opportunities for undergraduate students and postdoctoral fellows, and develop new and innovative resources and tools to help increase the public understanding of sexual and gender minority youth in Canada.
“I also hope that this Canada Research Chair will serve as a springboard for MacEwan to grow and support the development of other faculty members and CRCs to address some of the most pressing research questions and challenges currently facing our society,” he says. “We in the academy are in a unique position to use research to help ensure that evidence comes to bear on important policy developments and to help shape and inform public discourse. I strongly believe that research can be used as a catalytic force to both serve and benefit the public good.”
Kris says there is much to learn from youth when we listen, support and nurture them to become leaders in their schools, families and communities. “By using research to inform policies, practices and participation, especially in the domains of education, health and sport, sexual and gender minority youth will be afforded the opportunity to do more than simply try to survive in hostile and uninviting environments — they can be supported to thrive and live up to their full and amazing potential.”
Board of Governors Research Chairs announced
MacEwan University’s two new Board of Governors Research Chairs. Dr. Shelley Boulianne and Dr. Erin Walton will continue to advance the profile of research, scholarly and creative activities at the university.