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Meet the Provost and Vice-President, Academic

About Jennifer S. Simpson

Jennifer S. Simpson is the provost and vice-president, academic at Toronto Metropolitan University.

A proven leader of collaborative and strategic change, Jennifer joined Toronto Metropolitan University (formerly Ryerson University) in 2021 from Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador where she held the position of dean of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences. 

Jennifer has implemented consultative, evidence-informed, and transparent decision-making processes that prioritize academic vision and attend to fiscal realities. She has also supported systematic attention to equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) and Indigenization efforts at both the pan-university and faculty levels, as demonstrated by her role as Chair of the Deans’ Council Working Group on EDI.

Jennifer is a passionate intellectual with deep successes in research and teaching. Her scholarship over the last two decades has substantively engaged with questions of theory and application and with questions of racism and colonialism in university environments. She has received $500,000 in research funding, and directed a national research project on racism and colonialism in Canada. She is also the author of two books addressing higher education, race, equity and the public good, as well as co-editor of a book addressing race and whiteness in university classrooms.

In addition to serving as provost, Jennifer has received a tenured faculty appointment in the School of Professional Communication, The Creative School.

Jennifer earned her PhD in interdisciplinary studies from Northwestern University, an MA in theology and ethics from the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, and a bachelor of arts in political science and philosophy from California Lutheran University.

Provost responsibilities include:

  • Overseeing the academic program
  • Setting and implementing the university’s budget
  • Enhancing student life, engagement, and skills
  • Supporting scholarly, research, and creative activities
  • Proposing and implementing innovative technologies
  • Establishing outreach and access initiatives
  • Cultivating experiential learning opportunities
  • Developing and presenting faculty achievement awards

Welcome message

"The university has made significant strides on challenging topics related to reconciliation, racism, identity... and I am honoured to be able to bring my experience and commitment to furthering this important work together."

Jennifer S. Simpson