This year, a scholarship at the University of Ottawa has been created in memory of Antoine Morin to highlight his exemplary contributions to both teaching and academia. Antoine was a biology professor for nearly 30 years, and for eight years he served as director of his department. In 2016, he was appointed vice-dean of graduate studies at the Faculty of Science. In this role, he had begun analyzing statistics and trends on graduate student recruitment and retention. Hence, this scholarship is the logical continuation of his unwavering dedication to the wellbeing of students.
Antoine always prioritized his rapport with his students. He was a mentor and guide for many of them, as evidenced by the heartfelt testimonials we received. When it came to those under his wing, he was very generous with his time and energy, giving them the best of himself, instilling in them not only his own rigorous, passionate approach, but also the confidence and determination needed to play an active role in the learning process and reach their professional goals. Getting students to understand statistics is one thing: getting them to love the subject is quite another! And yet he successfully met this daunting challenge, even when it came to those least interested in the topic.
In addition to his research on fresh-water ecosystems, he was a pioneer in harnessing technology for teaching purposes, proposing innovative and forward-thinking digital initiatives. For example, he was co-designer and coordinator of the BIODIDAC project, which the Regroupement des universités de la francophonie canadienne (an association of Canadian Francophone universities) launched in 1995. Over the years, this first online French database of zoological, botanical, and human biological images grew extensively, enhancing the pedagogical experiences of thousands of teachers and students around the world. Antoine dedicated himself wholeheartedly to this project for nearly two decades and was so happy to receive emails from Senegal, Belgium, and even non-Francophone countries!
Antoine and I often discussed effective teaching methods, the importance of transmitting knowledge, and the need to support the next generation of youth in their university studies to ensure that they, in turn, can transmit these values. Hence, the Antoine Morin Memorial Scholarship will recognize a graduate student in biology who has shown remarkable university or community engagement to the transmission of knowledge.
Today, I ask for your donation to ensure that this scholarship remains available to future generations. Not only will your generosity help us remember Antoine, but also it will support motivated and talented students whose vision resembles his.
I join Rachel, Sara and Alexis (Antoine’s children) in thanking you for your ongoing support.
Michèle La Roche, Antoine’s spouse
Representative of the Antoine Morin Memorial Scholarship