Monday, December 14, 2020, Peterborough
Historian, bestselling author, screenwriter and professor at Trent University Durham GTA, Dr. Robert Wright, has added another impressive accolade to his list of accomplishments: the Vanier Professorship, a sought-after position at Trent University.
“Robert Wright is one of Canada’s foremost authors on recent Canadian history. As a history professor, he pays scholarly attention to detail, but writes like a novelist, bringing history to life in a way that is as engaging as it is edifying,” said Dr. Leo Groarke, president and vice-chancellor of Trent University. “His ability to popularize Canadian history and contribute to Trent’s leadership in developing a greater understanding of the diverse meaning of the Canadian experience makes Professor Wright the ideal Vanier professor.”
Awarded to a faculty member who has made significant contributions to the study of Canada, the Vanier professorship was established in honour of Governor General Georges Vanier, who officially opened Trent in 1964. Prof. Wright is the fourth Vanier professor at Trent and will begin his five-year term July 1, 2021. Previous recipients include Canadian historian and former master of Trent’s Champlain College, Dr. William L. Morton, Trent’s founding president, Professor Thomas H.B. Symons, and, most recently, historian and author, Dr. Joan Sangster.
“It is an honour to be named Vanier professor,” says Professor Wright, who is known for his work in popularizing recent Canadian history, pushing research beyond the university realm through best-selling books and venturing into mass media and film. “I have been around Trent my entire adult life, so I know something about the mystique that attaches to this distinction. The first historian to be named Vanier Professor was Dr. W.L. Morton, a larger-than-life scholar from the immediate postwar period whose writing I am using in my graduate seminar even now.”
In addition to teaching, Prof. Wright is currently working on several projects, including a film adaptation of one of his books and two new books. As Vanier professor, he will extend his work in the intellectual and cultural history of Canada. He will host an inaugural public lecture focused on his research in the latter part of 2021.
Throughout this term as Vanier professor, Prof. Wright will work closely with Trent’s Development Office to find ways to grow the Vanier endowment and augment activities associated with the professorship and Trent’s School for the Study of Canada.
About Professor Robert Wright
Prof. Wright is a Canadian historian specializing in North American cultural, political and diplomatic history. He is the author of several national bestsellers and the recipient of many book-publishing honours, including the Lela Common Award for Canadian History, which he is the only writer to have won twice. Prof. Wright co-wrote the award-winning film documentary Our Man in Tehran, and has served as a talking-head and consultant on various other media projects. His op-eds have appeared in Canada’s leading newspapers, and he has occasionally served as a consultant to Canadian legal professionals. Prof. Wright has been a professor of History at Trent University for 35 years, where he is particularly active in graduate teaching.
About Trent University
One of Canada's top universities, Trent University was founded on the ideal of interactive learning that's personal, purposeful and transformative. Consistently recognized nationally for leadership in teaching, research and student satisfaction, Trent attracts excellent students from across the country and around the world. Here, undergraduate and graduate students connect and collaborate with faculty, staff and their peers through diverse communities that span residential colleges, classrooms, disciplines, hands-on research, co-curricular and community-based activities. Across all disciplines, Trent brings critical, integrative thinking to life every day. Today, Trent's unique approach to personal development through supportive, collaborative community engagement is in more demand than ever. Students lead the way by co-creating experiences rooted in dialogue, diverse perspectives and collaboration. In a learning environment that builds life-long passion for inclusion, leadership and social change, Trent's students, alumni, faculty and staff are engaged global citizens who are catalysts in developing sustainable solutions to complex issues. Trent's Peterborough campus boasts award-winning architecture in a breathtaking natural setting on the banks of the Otonabee River, just 90 minutes from downtown Toronto, while Trent University Durham Greater Toronto Area, delivers a distinct mix of programming in the east GTA.
For more information contact:
Cara Walsh, communications & media relations officer, Trent University, (705) 748-1011 x6240 or firstname.lastname@example.org