Dr. Esme Foord Scholarships

Dr. Esme Foord was a hard-working administrator, veteran teacher and counsellor who witnessed the University of Victoria morph from a two-year college, Victoria College, into a full university.

Born in England on June 10, 1910, Esme moved with her family to Kamloops where she grew up and spent much of her early adult years.

She began her teaching career in a rural school near the Shuswap Lakes and later taught at the elementary and secondary levels. She was a teacher and guidance consultant in the Kamloops school district for thirty years. During this time, Esme gained her BA and MA in psychology from Queens University in Kingston, ON and eventually, in 1959, received her Doctorate in Educational Psychology from the University of Toronto.

A year later, Dr. Foord moved to Victoria where she started at Victoria College in the Faculty of Education. It was the same year that the program expanded from two years to four and had its first graduating class of approximately forty students. She taught and counselled until she became UVic’s Director of Arts and Science Advising in 1970.

Dr. Foord was described as loyal and dedicated to her role at the university. UVic’s, The Martlet newsletter, dated January 14, 1965 states, “Dr. Foord was a professional counsellor who would spend an 8-hour day advising students on their problems, both career and personal, then would lecture 3 hours per week to a class of 40.”

During her tenure, between 1960 and 1976, Dr. Foord witnessed UVic grow from a two-year college into a university to be proud of. She said, “The University’s development is moving in the right direction. The basic need that must be kept in mind is good instruction.” Today, UVic is ranked one of the top universities in the world and attracts students from numerous countries.

Dr. Foord was set to retire in 1975, but her dedication to the university kept her on for another year when she was asked to take on a new office as the Director of Admissions Services. A year later she retired.

She said, back in 1976, “I’ve enjoyed everything I’ve ever done…perhaps more so this last year, because of the challenge.” She enjoyed the continual contact with students, faculty and staff.

In her retirement, she planned to reconnect with friends and explore other interests including her passion for history, particularly BC’s history. She also enjoyed water-colour painting, stamp collecting, handicrafts, gardening and hiking. For many years she also sang in choirs and performed as a soloist at festivals.

Dr. Esme Foord passed away at the age of 94 on November 28, 2004. It was always important to her that students had the best possible chance to achieve their educational dreams and career goals so she left a lasting gift that would ensure that. As a result, her legacy and dedication to UVic students will live on for many years to come in the form of the Dr. Esme Foord Scholarships, which are awarded to academically outstanding undergraduate and graduate students.

Source: http://ring.uvic.ca:8080/docs/archive75-76/Ring2-10.pdf

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