Dr. Michael W. Higgins – New Interim President and Vice-Chancellor

May 15, 2020

The Board of Directors at Corpus Christi College-St. Mark’s College at UBC is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Michael W. Higgins as Interim President and Vice-Chancellor of the colleges, commencing July 15, 2020. Dr. Higgins brings to the position an extensive and distinguished background as an experienced academic leader, celebrated author and lecturer.

Dr. Higgins, a native Torontonian, is a biographer, author, columnist and scholar. He is currently the Distinguished Professor of Catholic Thought at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Connecticut and has previously held positions as President and Vice-Chancellor of St. Jerome’s University at the University of Waterloo and St. Thomas University in Fredericton, New Brunswick.

Among his numerous authored and co-authored books are: The Jesuit Mystique; Power and Peril: the Catholic Church at the Crossroads; Heretic Blood: the Spiritual Geography of Thomas Merton; The Muted Voice: Religion and the Media; Stalking the Holy: In Pursuit of Saint-Making; Suffer the Children unto Me: An Open Inquiry into the Clerical Sex Abuse Scandal; Genius Born of Anguish: the Life and Legacy of Henri Nouwen; Thomas Merton: Faithful Visionary; The Unquiet Monk: Thomas Merton’s Questing Faith; Jean Vanier: Logician of the Heart; and Impressively Free: Henri Nouwen as a Model for a Reformed Priesthood.

Many of these books have been translated into German, Italian, French and Norwegian and have won national and international status as bestsellers.

Dr. Higgins is a regular contributor to The Globe and Mail, Commonweal, The Tablet, and the Literary Review of Canada and he is a frequent commentator for both the CBC and CTV networks.

His Ideas series, “Genius Born of Anguish” with producer Kevin Burns and executive producer Bernie Lucht, won the 2013 Gold Medal for International Radio Documentaries awarded by the New York Festivals.

Dr. Higgins is a Senior Fellow of Massey College at the University of Toronto, an International Fellow of the Chester Ronning Centre for Religion and Public Life at the University of Alberta, and an Affiliate Graduate Professor at the Oblate School of Theology in San Antonio, Texas.

He is married to Krystyna, a liturgical musician and spiritual writer, and they have four adult children.

Dr. Higgins is excited to join the Catholic colleges at UBC.

“I am leaving an institution–Sacred Heart University–defined by its focused energy and new visioning to go to an institution defined by its focused energy and new visioning. Corpus Christi College-St. Mark’s College has securely established a foundation for growth, societal interconnection, student enrichment and spiritual flourishing,” Dr. Higgins says.
“Strengthening the local and national profile, enhancing the relationship with the University of British Columbia, and furthering the collegiality and catholicity of Corpus Christi College-St. Mark’s College are clear priorities for me.”

Dr. Peter Meehan will continue to serve as President until Dr. Higgins assumes his duties in July. Please join us in congratulating and welcoming Dr. Higgins to the colleges.


Kerilee Falloon, Communications, St. Mark’s College at UBC
[email protected]