News Release

Office of Public Affairs


For immediate release:  May 12, 2006


Acadia University to award over 900 degrees during May convocation ceremonies
Six honorary degrees to be awarded to international field of high achievers


(Wolfville, NS) -    Acadia University will award over 900 degrees at its annual spring convocation May 14 and 15. Students will graduate from the faculties of Arts, Pure and Applied Science, Professional Studies, and Theology. During the ceremonies, Acadia will also grant honorary degrees to six highly regarded individuals.

On Sunday, May 14, Ms. Janina Fialkowska will be awarded a Doctor of Music before giving the Convocation address. Ms. Fialkowska, a member of the Order of Canada, is an internationally-recognized concert pianist distinguished as one of the great interpreters of Chopin and Liszt. She appears regularly with the foremost North American orchestras, and has been a guest artist with the London Philharmonic and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra of Amsterdam. She is the founder of the award-winning community outreach program, Piano Six, which brings internationally renowned Canadian pianists to small communities at affordable costs. She has been affiliated with Acadia University’s School of Music for several years.

Dr. Richard Longenecker will be honoured with a Doctor of Divinity on May 14. Dr. Longenecker is a distinguished New Testament scholar who has developed an international reputation teaching in several theological schools for 40 years and lecturing widely in North America. Dr. Longenecker has given outstanding leadership in evangelical biblical scholarship, serving as president of the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada and making significant contributions to the Institute for Biblical Research. He is an accomplished author of many books and commentaries. After a long career at Wycliffe College in Toronto, Dr. Longenecker retired and accepted a distinguished appointment at McMaster Divinity College.

On Monday, May 15, during the morning ceremony, Dr. Paul Corkum will receive a Doctor of Science. Dr. Corkum, an Acadia alumnus, is one of the world’s most distinguished physicists. He is currently the program leader in Femtosecond Science at the National Research Council’s Stacie Institute for Molecular Science in Ottawa. In his 30-year-career, Dr. Corkum has made several breakthrough discoveries in plasma physics and strong field atomic physics. He has been recognized by the journal, Science and Nature, as making one of the 10 most important scientific advances in 2002 for his development of attosecond electron pulses.

Dr. Maria M. Klawe will also receive an honorary Doctor of Science on May 15 before she gives the morning Convocation address. Dr. Klawe is a computer scientist and dedicated educator who has made significant research contributions in several areas of mathematics and computer science. She is the founder of the E-GEMS project, a collaborative effort on the design and use of computer games in enhancing mathematics for grades 4 to 9. A tireless champion for women in science, Dr. Klawe has worked to engage women in science, particularly computer science through innovative programs. She is currently Dean of Engineering and a professor of Computer Science at Princeton University. On July 1, she will begin her role as the first woman president of Harvey Mudd College in California.

During the afternoon Convocation on May 15, Mr. Peter Irniq will receive a Doctor of Civil Laws before he gives the afternoon address. As the former Commissioner of Nunavut, Mr. Irniq has been a major representative of the Inuit peoples. His role as spokesperson for Canada’s newest territory and the Inuit culture took him throughout the country and abroad. Mr. Irniq has a long and distinguished record as an elected official in the former Northwest Territories and as a senior Inuk civil servant working with Renewable Resources. He has been involved in many initiatives, councils and committees with widespread responsibilities in areas such as environmental protection, health services and cultural preservation.

Mr. George Bishop will also receive an honorary Doctor of Civil Laws on the afternoon of May 15. Mr. Bishop, an Acadia alumnus, is well-known as a past chair of the Board of Governors (1999 – 2004). Mr. Bishop, a recipient of the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Award and a Fellow Chartered Accountant, is currently president of Scotia Investments Limited, Minas Basin Pulp and Power Company and Bedford Village Properties. A strong supporter of the community, he has served as chairman of the Eastern Kings Memorial Hospital, governor for Junior Achievement and the director of the Nova Scotia Association of Health Organizations.

Sunday, May 14
 - 3:00 p.m. Faculty of Arts, and Theology

Monday, May 15
- 10:00 a.m. Faculty of Pure and Applied Science
- 2:30 p.m. Faculty of Professional Studies

Acadia University, in Wolfville, Nova Scotia, has long been recognized as one of Canada’s premier undergraduate institutions. With its nationally and internationally recognized research initiatives, small class sizes and technology-rich teaching and learning environment, Acadia offers students an experience that includes academic achievement combined with personal growth and development. For more information about Acadia, visit our website at


For more information contact:
Scott Roberts
Senior Director, Communications and Public Affairs
Acadia University
P: 902.585.1705 | C: 902.670.8966 | F: 902.585.1072

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