Andy Sidhu was installed as the University of the Fraser Valley’s third Chancellor at a ceremony on April 19 in Evered Hall in the Student Union Building on the Abbotsford campus.
A long-time proponent of community engagement and integration, Sidhu takes over from Dr. Gwen Point, who served as UFV’s second Chancellor from 2015 to the present, following two terms by Brian Minter.
“I’m extremely honoured and proud to join the University of the Fraser Valley in this capacity,” Sidhu said.
“UFV has a rich history of inclusivity and community leadership. Needless to say, I’m very excited to contribute as we move forward together.”
An accountant by trade before emigrating from Malaysia in 1974, Sidhu worked first on a dairy farm, then as a bookkeeper with the Canada Farm Labour Pool, where over the course of his 21-year career he became an unofficial ambassador, bridging gaps in culture and language between local businesses and people emigrating from the Punjab.
Sidhu is best known for founding B.C.’s first multi-language newspaper, the Punjabi Patrika. Printing 15,000 copies every Friday in English and Punjabi, the Patrika was established as a beacon of inclusivity and multicultural connection nearly 22 years ago.
Sidhu received an honorary degree from UFV in 2017 in recognition of his community service.
As Chancellor, Sidhu will act as ceremonial head of UFV while serving as a member of the Board of Governors and the Senate. He will also preside over convocation, conferring UFV degrees, diplomas, and certificates and serve as an ambassador for UFV at major events.
The Chancellor is appointed by the UFV Board of Governors upon the recommendation of the Alumni Association and consultation with the UFV Senate. UFV started the practice of appointing a Chancellor after receiving university status in 2008.
“By recommending him as UFV’s next Chancellor, the Alumni Association sought to recognize Andy Sidhu as a hard-working and community driven business leader who will serve as an excellent role model for our students,” said UFV Alumni Association chair Nav Bains.
UFV Board Chair John Pankratz couldn’t agree more.
“In Andy Sidhu, the UFV Board of Governors welcomes an experienced community leader with deep international experience.”