April 23, 2021
For Immediate Release
Waterloo – Wilfrid Laurier University has appointed Sofie Lachapelle as dean of the Faculty of Arts. Lachapelle, currently chair and professor in the Department of History in the College of Arts at the University of Guelph, brings many years of teaching and research experience to Laurier.
“We are extremely delighted at Laurier to have Dr. Lachapelle join our strong and engaged community,” said Anthony Vannelli, provost and vice-president: academic. “Her dedication, experience and enthusiasm for the role were clear throughout the search process and we are eager to see the passion she possesses come alive in the classroom and throughout the Faculty of Arts as she gets to know and collaborate with our students, faculty and staff.”
Lachapelle earned her PhD in the History and Philosophy of Science from the University of Notre Dame, Ind., before joining the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science in Germany as a postdoctoral fellow. In 2005, she started her next academic chapter at the University of Guelph, where she focused on research in several areas, including medicine and opera, science, culture, entertainment and modern France. During her time at the university, she rose the ranks to several senior leadership positions, including interim dean of the College of Arts, acting associate vice-president academic, acting associate dean academic and graduate coordinator.
“I am honoured to be joining the Faculty of Arts at Wilfrid Laurier University,” said Lachapelle. “I particularly value Laurier's tremendous sense of community, as well as its strong commitment to student excellence, and I look forward to working and collaborating with everyone in the Faculty of Arts to further its mission and commitment to strong academic programming and research, inclusion, Indigenization and mental wellness for all.”
Since 2005, Lachapelle has taught 15 different courses at all levels of the undergraduate curriculum. She is also the author of two books: Conjuring Science: A History of Scientific Entertainment and Stage Magic in Modern France and Investigating the Supernatural: From Spiritism and Occultism to Psychical Research and Metapsychics in France, 1853-1931.
“We are incredibly grateful for the guidance, support and leadership of Dr. Brockett, especially in this particularly challenging time for post-secondary institutions. His commitment to Laurier and his contributions to the academic and research community are widely respected by students and faculty alike,” said Vannelli.
Lachapelle will formally begin in the role of dean of the Faculty of Arts on July 1, 2021.
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