Lakehead University chancellor Derek Burney and his wife, Joan, announced a gift of $150,000 to establish the first postdoctoral fellowship for the Thunder Bay school’s Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Mining and Exploration (CESME).
The fellowship will fund a three-year bridging position at the university for a researcher who is between their PhD and a faculty position.
“It is because of our education and what we were able to do with it, that we are in a position today to make this donation to CESME,” said Burney in a May 29 news release. “It is one that we sincerely hope will inspire others to do something similar in support of Lakehead University.”
The centre was established last year to support research, education and outreach activities on the wide-ranging impacts of mineral resource exploration in Northern Ontario.
Lakehead president Brian Stevenson said the Burneys’ gift “will most certainly help push CESME closer to its goals. My hope is that their gesture encourages others to make philanthropic contributions to the centre and Lakehead University.
CESME director Pete Hollings said: “By directly supporting the people who undertake the research into resource development in Northern Ontario, the Burneys recognize the important role that CESME will play in our region’s future.”
John Mason, mining services project manager for the Thunder Bay Economic Development Commission, said these kinds of investments in strategic mining players are “far-reaching and impactful economic driver in this region, and will continue to be for years to come.”