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Gzowski tribute: Proceeds from new book go to Trent University and Frontier College

The most recent Peter Gzowski tribute book, called Remembering Peter Gzowski: A Book of Tributes, was recently released into Canadian bookstores to great acclaim.

This book is a collection of letters and writings by Morningside listeners and Mr. Gzowski’s colleagues, friends and family. It paints a fascinating picture of his work and his broader life.

As the former chancellor of Trent University, Peter was deeply connected to the people and issues at the University. He had a special place in his heart for this campus, which is revealed clearly in many pages of Peter Gzowski: A Book of Tributes. An entire chapter is devoted to his life as "Mr. Chancellor", and includes thoughts from Trent students, faculty, staff and others.

A few excerpts read like this:

"Peter and I both believed passionately in the value of a broad liberal arts education. Neither of us could quite buy into the idea that universities are career-training shops, as opposed to environments within which to explore all aspects of learning. Universities are for expanding our options, not for shutting them down and narrowing our focus. Peter and I even shared the view that there’s a great deal of significant education to be found outside the classroom - even in the campus coffee shops and pubs. Perhaps that’s why neither of us earned an undergraduate degree. And we agreed that one of the greatest benefits of a university education is the development of a love of learning. There are those these days who condemn this kind of thinking as being impractical, but I would suggest that the critics of this philosophy might want to consider Peter’s life and career, which in many ways exemplified this philosophy of education." ~ Avie Bennett, chancellor, York University

"I would like to take this opportunity to thank Peter Gzowski for inspiring me to reach well beyond my perceived capacity in the investigation of understanding what it means to be courageous and humble at the same time, and for being honest." ~ alumna Lynda Mannik

"The memory of Peter Gzowski that will last upon me forever was from this past June when he conferred upon me a Bachelor of Arts Honours degree from Trent University. It was a double honour to receive a degree from a wonderful school and a great Canadian icon." ~ alumnus David Wallbridge

In addition to the chapter devoted to Peter’s chancellorship, Trent is noted for housing the collection of his papers. His long-time assistant, Shelley Ambrose, writes: "Trent University, one of Peter’s last and most loved homes, holds his papers." Thousands of letters, clippings from his "Canadian" bulletin board and many types of documentation are tucked away in the University archives.

Reflecting Peter’s love of Trent, and of Frontier College, Canada’s leading literacy organization, all proceeds from the sale of this tribute book will be directed equally to these two institutions. In this way, a small piece of Peter’s legacy will live on, to inspire Canadians to read, learn and grow.

Copies of Peter Gzowski: A Book of Tributes are available at the Trent bookstore.

Posted February 13, 2003

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