Leading international scholar named associate dean, College of Graduate Studies

Thomas Heilke, former Graduate Dean at the University of Kansas, will also serve as director of the Residential College


Dr. Thomas Heilke

Professor Thomas Heilke, a scholar with extensive international experience in political science and global and international programs, has been appointed associate dean of the College of Graduate Studies and Director of the Residential College at UBC’s Okanagan campus. Heilke’s appointment is for a five-year term effective January 2014.

Heilke, a native of Canada, comes to UBC from service as dean of graduate studies and professor of political science at the University of Kansas.

“We are delighted to welcome Dr. Heilke as associate dean and director of the new Okanagan Residential College,” says Miriam Grant, Vice-Provost and Dean of Graduate and Post-Doctoral Studies. “His extensive experience as a scholar and an administrator of outstanding graduate programs will help us develop exciting new opportunities for our graduate students and post-doctoral fellows.”

UBC’s new Okanagan Residential College, which opened last fall, strives to be a diverse and lively intellectual and social community. It features a 36-person residence on the Okanagan campus – using the Graduate Collegium across the street as a gathering place for graduate students to engage in friendship and ideas, it is hoped that the Residential College will also help to make interdisciplinary connections with graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, faculty members and others in the wider community.

Heilke earned his PhD in political theory from Duke University and his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in political science from the University of Calgary. He is the author or co-author of more than 40 publications and a recipient of three campus-wide teaching awards at KU. His new position includes appointment as a full professor of political science.

Heilke’s accomplishments as dean at KU include making a significant contribution in the implementation and shaping of the “Elevating Doctoral Education” component of the Kansas University’s Bold Aspirations strategic plan.

Prior to this, Heilke served as associate dean of international programs at the university before becoming the director of the Center for Global and International Studies in 2010. The University of Kansas is ranked as one of the top universities in the US and the world.

“It was difficult to leave KU after 23 years in Lawrence,” says Heilke, “but I welcome a new challenge at such a dynamic and emerging university that’s close to family in both Alberta and British Columbia.

“I’ve enjoyed serving as dean at KU, but look forward to providing leadership and administrative direction as we build on the tremendous success of our graduate and post-doctoral programs.”

About the College of Graduate Studies


About the Okanagan Residential College


Leave a Reply