Betty and Gilbert Kennedy Scholarship

Elizabeth (Betty) and Gilbert Kennedy had impressive careers which included a variety of contributions within the academic world and in the community at large.

Betty Kennedy was born in Victoria, BC, and grew up in Burnaby, BC. Earning an honours BA in mathematics from UBC in 1943, Betty began teaching as a lecturer of mathematics at UBC in 1944. Returning to Victoria in 1957, Betty taught at Victoria College in the department of mathematics until the College was named the University of Victoria. She remained teaching at UVic for another 22 years.

In addition to teaching, Betty chaired the Canadian Junior Mathematic Competition for BC, was a founding secretary for the BC College and University Program in Mathematics Group, and chaired the Canadian Mathematic Olympiad. She chaired and participated in numerous University committees.

Betty, active in the community since an early age when she began teaching Sunday school at age 13, held many positions with the Girl Guides of Canada. She was the recipient of the Girl Guides Medal of Merit. Betty was also actively involved with UVic’s Finnerty Gardens Advisory Committee and has received an honorary law degree from UVic. 

Gilbert Kennedy was born in Muskoka, Ontario, and educated in Toronto where he attended Brown Public School and University of Toronto Schools. He earned a B.A. in Honour Law from the University of Toronto in 1939, and an LL.B. and an M.A. in Law from the University of Toronto in 1942. He graduated from Osgoode Hall in 1942. Later, he traveled to Harvard University to earn a doctorate in Juridical Science. In 1946 he moved to BC and joined the Faculty of Law at the University of British Columbia (UBC) as an associate professor. In 1957, Dr. Kennedy was appointed Deputy Attorney General for BC, and in 1973 he became Associate Deputy Attorney General. He remained in the Attorney General Department until 1982.

Gilbert Kennedy retired in 1982. He maintained an active interest in natural history, and served as member of the Board and President of the Friends of the Royal B.C. Museum.

When asked why she endowed an entrance scholarship in each of engineering, law, math and music, Betty replied “I love music, I taught mathematics, my husband was a lawyer and my father was an engineer”.


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