Alastair Cribb named dean of the Cummings School

Alastair Cribb, the new dean of the Cummings School, is pictured. Courtesy Jager & Kokemor

Alastair Cribb, founding dean of the University of Calgary Faculty of Veterinary Medicine (UCVM), has been appointed as the next dean of the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, according to a press release provided to the Daily.

“I am particularly excited to join [the] Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine and Tufts University,” Cribb said in the press release. “The opportunities for veterinary education, research and clinical service that support the regional and global communities are outstanding.”

Cribb will assume the deanship on July 15, succeeding Joyce Knoll, who has served as dean ad interim since Deborah Kochevar left to assume the position of provost and senior vice president ad interim in March 2018.

Currently, Cribb is a professor of pharmacology and toxicology at UCVM, where he became founding dean in 2006. Previously, he was a Canada Research Chair in Comparative Pharmacology and Toxicology at Atlantic Veterinary College. In 1998, he was recognized by Canada’s Top 40 Under 40, an awards program that highlights the achievements of Canadian leaders and visionaries, and was named a fellow at the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences, according to the press release.

University President Anthony Monaco praised Cribb’s background as an exemplary fit for the Cummings School.

“The school also serves as a catalyst for the life science and biomedical research industries and has incubated more than two dozen life sciences companies,” Monaco said in the press release. “With his multidisciplinary background, Dr. Cribb is an ideal choice to advance the school’s priorities and extend its impact as a force for good in the world.”

Cribb cited his time running UCVM while it was a new school as an asset that has given him knowledge about every aspect of running a veterinary school, and he also said that UCVM prepared him to work in the community.

“I really recognize the importance of getting out and meeting our own people where they work, but also interfacing with the community,” Cribb said in an interview with the Daily.

Cribb said that he was drawn to the Cummings School by both its research achievements and its unique culture.

“I was really impressed by the people I met: the faculty, the staff and the students; there was an obvious pride in the school, of what it’d achieved; and there was also … a really strong sense of innovation and creativity which I found really attractive,” Cribb said.

Cribb emphasized that he will not approach the deanship with an agenda to make unnecessary changes but rather will aim to learn about the community’s strengths in order to find room for growth and help it achieve its goals.

“I don’t believe in making changes just for the sake of making them, but I am happy to make changes if it’s going to make it the school that we want it to,” Cribb said.

Cribb noted that the kindness, respect and professionalism he faced throughout the selection process has energized him to work at the Cummings School.

“Even though I’m not there yet, I’m really starting to feel like a member of the Cummings community, and I’m really looking forward to arriving and getting to know everybody and helping to move the school forward,” he said.


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