UPEI convocation ceremonies to take place on Saturday

Published on March 17, 2017

UPEI will grant honorary degrees to, from left to right, Stan MacPherson, Judith Clark, Elizabeth Epperly, and Allan Curran at Convocation 2017.


Four honorary degrees will be conferred at UPEI graduation ceremonies this spring. Indigenous leader Judith Clark of York, P.E.I.; business leader Stan MacPherson of Charlottetown; UPEI past-president and professor emeritus Dr. Elizabeth Epperly of Wolfville, Nova Scotia; and SDU alumnus and business owner Allan Curran of Bay Shore, New York, will be awarded honorary Doctor of Laws degrees.

“We are so excited to honour these distinguished individuals who have contributed so much to society. Each honorary degree recipient epitomizes success in their field, as well as service to their communities,” said UPEI president Alaa Abd-El-Aziz. “What makes this year very special is that each recipient has distinct and ongoing ties with the University. As our graduates begin to chart their own path as global citizens, they will be inspired by the stories of how our honorary graduands have made their mark.”

The university’s senate approved the honorary graduands at a meeting earlier this year in accordance with university policy that states that honorary doctorates of laws will be presented “to individuals who display the highest levels of achievement in public and community service.”

The Convocation ceremonies will take place on Saturday, May 13 in the Chi-Wan Young Sports Centre with the first ceremony beginning at 10 a.m. and the afternoon ceremony at 2:30 p.m. Each ceremony will be broadcast live on Eastlink TV and at upei.ca/live.

Elder Judith Clark

Judy Clark is a Mi’kmaq woman from Epekwitk and a member of Abegweit First Nation. She has served as the president for the Aboriginal Women’s Association of P.E.I. for five terms since 2008, and prior to that as vice-president. In this volunteer position, Clark has raised the profile of the organization and proven to be a strong advocate for the interests of Aboriginal families, particularly in reducing violence against Aboriginal women and girls.  

Mr. F. Allan Curran

Allan Curran is President of Royal Products, a manufacturer of precision metalworking performance accessories based in Hauppauge, New York. A native of Brooklyn, N.Y. but with strong roots on Prince Edward Island, he followed in his father’s and grandfather’s footsteps by attending UPEI’s founding institution Saint Dunstan’s University in 1958 to study commerce.

Dr. Elizabeth Epperly

Dr. Elizabeth "Betsy" Epperly has made significant contributions to the University and to P.E.I. throughout her career. She was the first student to register at UPEI after its formation in 1969, coming from Virginia because of her love for the writing of L.M. Montgomery. An English professor for 30 years, she spent 22 of those at UPEI where she was the founding chair of the L.M. Montgomery Institute and served as the fourth (and first female) president.

Mr. Stan H. MacPherson, FCPA, FCA

Stan MacPherson has been an active community and business leader in our province for over 40 years. His involvement in Island life has touched many segments of society including tourism, commerce, government, charity, agriculture, finance, and education. His demeanour and ability to work with such a diverse group of people and organizations is well known and respected within his profession and across the Island.