Prof. Norma Sue Fisher-Stitt becomes interim dean of the School of the Arts, Media, Performance & Design

Lisa Philipps, interim vice-president academic and provost, has issued the following announcement to the York University community:

I am pleased to inform members of the School of the Arts, Media, Performance & Design (AMPD) that Professor Norma Sue Fisher-Stitt has agreed to take on the role of interim dean of the school, with the departure of Dean Shawn Brixey. President Mamdouh Shoukri and I have brought this recommendation for board approval; and the Board of Governors Executive Committee, on behalf of the Board of Governors, has now approved the recommendation of this appointment. Professor Fisher-Stitt’s appointment will take effect July 1, 2017.

Norma Sue Fisher-Stitt

Dr. Fisher-Stitt will be well known to members of AMPD and the York community. She has been a full-time faculty member at York since 1992 and is a professor in the Department of Dance in AMPD. She currently (since 2015) serves as associate dean academic in AMPD. As associate dean, she has fostered the expansion of experiential education in the school as experiential education lead and through an Academic Innovation Fund project; chaired the AMPD Markham working group developing the AMPD curriculum for the Markham campus; served on the Enrolment Management Group and worked with the Registrar’s Office on admissions; and overseen the development of new programs in the school, including the BFA Film-Media Arts and the honours minor BA. Previously, she had served as chair of the Department of Dance and director of the graduate program in dance.

Beyond the school, she was associate dean of the Faculty of Graduate Studies (2005 to 2007), and from 2007 to 2011 she served as associate vice-president (AVP) academic learning initiatives in the Office of the Vice-President Academic and Provost. As AVP, she made important contributions to the enhancement of the quality of our students’ experience and to the promotion of teaching and learning at York. She has also represented AMPD on institutional bodies, including the Senate’s Academic Policy, Planning & Research Committee.

Dr. Fisher-Stitt holds BA and MFA degrees from York University, and an EdD from Temple University in Philadelphia. She is also a graduate of Canada’s National Ballet School and danced with the National Ballet prior to her arrival at York. She is the author of the book The Ballet Class: A History of Canada’s National Ballet School, released in 2010 in conjunction with the school’s 50th-anniversary celebrations. Her areas of research and teaching interest include dance history, the evolution of ballet technique and dance education/pedagogy. Professor Fisher-Stitt is the principal investigator on a Social Sciences & Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Insight Development Grant titled “Collective Historical Acts of Social Memory (CHASM): Exploring Canada’s National Choreographic Seminars.” She was the recipient of a President’s University-Wide Teaching Award in 2014.

I very much appreciate Dr. Fisher-Stitt’s willingness to undertake this important responsibility. I know she will provide outstanding leadership as interim dean, and I look forward to working with her and colleagues in AMPD as we continue to advance the school’s vision and profile.

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