Irving K. Barber Endowment

Dr. Irving K. Barber wanted to create an outstanding learning environment that prepares students to become better citizens of the world. He believed that excellence in teaching and learning was the key to promoting the values of a civil and sustainable society. His generous donation founded the Irving K. Barber School of Arts and Sciences on UBC’s Okanagan campus. His support also helped create an endowment in his name that funds innovative teaching, experiential learning, and that brings exceptional speakers to the Okanagan campus.

Dr. Barber passed away on April 13, 2012, but his legacy lives on in the exceptional research and experiences for students and faculty made possible by his generosity.

The Legacy of Dr. Irving K. Barber

Since the endowment was established in 2005:

  • 22 outstanding professors have received Curricular Innovation Awards to help develop innovative approaches to teaching and learning
  • 23 students have gained experiential learning in an international setting through International Education Travel Subsidies
  • 185 students have received Irving K. Barber School of Arts and Sciences Undergraduate Research Awards to pursue innovative and original research

In addition, the community at large benefits from the endowment through the Distinguished Speaker Series. To date, 28 distinguished guests have presented their unique perspectives on issues that affect the Okanagan, the country, and the world.

“Ike’s commitment to education and the creation of opportunities went far beyond his financial gifts. Ike regularly attended the annual Undergraduate Research Awards symposiums to hear first-hand how the awards were having an impact on the lives of students who received the awards and the communities who benefit from the research. He was always interested in what sorts of projects students were involved in, and how the experiences helped to shape and transform their education and their lives. His loss has touched many, but his legacy continues to energize and inspire everyone connected to the Barber School.”

-Dr. Cynthia Mathieson, former Dean of the Irving K. Barber School of Arts and Sciences