April 24, 2024

Dr. Sandra Davidson appointed provost and vice-president (academic)

A message from President and Vice-Chancellor Ed McCauley
Sandra Davidson

Sandra Davidson

I am pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Sandra Davidson as provost and vice-president (academic), beginning her five-year term on July 1, 2024.

Dr. Davidson was appointed dean of the Faculty of Nursing at the University of Calgary in 2018 and has also served as deputy provost (2021-2023) for the University of Calgary. Over her 30-year career, she has served in a wide range of academic and health-care environments that span private, for-profit; public, not-for profit; and both large and small public universities. She is well known in each position for her entrepreneurial thought and creative innovation.

With her leadership, the Faculty of Nursing has more than doubled its graduate enrolment over the past six years. This has included the development and launch of eight graduate certificates and a certificate pathway leading to a master’s degree in nursing. In 2023, the faculty launched a Doctor of Nursing (DN) program with a focus on health systems transformation. This is only the second DN program in Canada. Davidson championed the development of the rural/remote community and Indigenous community pathways of the undergraduate nursing program.  Through these “learn where you live” pathways, nursing students can remain in their home communities while they study as UCalgary nursing students.

Her research and scholarship focuses on leadership and complex systems, living well with chronic disease, and aging. As an innovative educator, she has been recognized nationally and internationally for her student-centred, relational practices and use of strategies such as game-based learning and simulation. She is a Fellow in both the Canadian and American Academies of Nursing.

Davidson obtained her PhD in Leadership Studies from Gonzaga University in 2011. She earned her Master of Science in Nursing at the same institution in 2001 and received her Bachelor of Nursing from the University of Lethbridge in 1996 and Diploma of Nursing from Lethbridge College in 1994.

I would like to extend my sincere appreciation to the members of the advisory search committee for the time they dedicated to this important search. They are: Kate Hamilton (AVP, Strategy and Performance), Dianne Gereluk (Dean, Werklund School of Education), Gina Grandy (Dean, Haskayne School of Business), Catherine Lebel (GFC-Faculty of Medicine), Hieu Ngo (GFC- Faculty of Social Work), Lorian Hardcastle (GFC-Faculty of Law), Kent Donlevy  (TUCFA), Stefanie Hassel (MaPS), Barb McCutcheon (AUPE), James Steele (GSA), Shaziah Jinnah Morsette (SU), Keely Cameron (Alumni Association), and Nannette Ho-Covernton (Community Representative).

Special thanks to Dr. Penny Werthner for her leadership and dedication to the University of Calgary over the past two years. Dr. Werthner has acted as interim provost since August of 2022, and during that time she worked tirelessly to establish stronger relationships with student leaders, supported the hiring of new deans and a new leader for the School of Public Policy, led the development of the Academic Plan and guided the academy in enabling academic excellence across campus. I am personally indebted to Penny for her support and wise counsel over the past two years.

Please join me in thanking Dr. Werthner for her leadership and service to the University of Calgary and in congratulating Dr. Davidson on her new role.


Dr. Ed McCauley
President and Vice-Chancellor