The University of New Brunswick will grant honorary degrees to two distinguished alumni during its fall graduation ceremonies.

The Fredericton campus will celebrate its 56th Convocation at the Aitken University Centre on Oct. 21, at 4:30 p.m.  During the ceremony Dawn Sharpe, engineer, entrepreneur and philanthropist, will be recognized with an honorary doctor of science degree. He will also deliver the Convocation Address to the graduates.

The Saint John campus will hold its 28th Fall Convocation on Oct. 22 at 4:30 p.m. at the Imperial Theatre.  Dana Hanson, president of the World Medical Association, will be recognized with an honorary doctor of science degree and will address the graduates at the ceremony.

The Honorees

Dawn Sharpe is the president and owner of Ramier Resources Ltd., an oil company based in Calgary.  Born in Quebec, he grew up in Tide Head, N.B., and graduated from UNB in 1964 with a bachelor of science in civil engineering.  While at UNB, Mr. Sharpe lived in Aitken House and was very involved in campus activities and intramural sports.   

After graduating from UNB, he moved to Albert to work in the oil industry.  In 1974, he founded Marlex Engineering Ltd., an engineering firm serving the oil industry, then Ramier Resources. 

A successful engineer and entrepreneur, Mr. Sharpe has generously supported the university.  He was the lead cabinet member for Calgary during UNB’s Venture Campaign, and he has donated to numerous campaigns, funds, fellowships and bursaries. 

Mr. Sharpe has demonstrated remarkable compassion and concern for the struggling student.  He and his wife, Susan, established the Sharpe Family Scholarship, a renewable scholarship now valued at $11,000 per year.  Recently, they fully endowed a second $11,000 renewable scholarship. 

Dana Hanson is president of the World Medical Association. He is the first Canadian in more than four decades to fill this position.

A native of Saint John, N.B., Dr. Hanson received his bachelor of science degree from UNB in 1970 and earned his medical doctorate at Dalhousie University in 1974.

Dr. Hanson set up his first dermatology practice in Fredericton in 1980 and quickly made a name for himself.  He has been active in professional organizations, serving as chair of the Board of Directors of the New Brunswick Medical Society, and as its president.  In 1999, he was awarded the Distinguished Career Award from his local medical society.

Dr. Hanson has advocated for a number of important issues during his lengthy service to his profession, including physician shortages, physician health and public health promotion.  

In addition to his contributions on the world medical stage, Dr. Hanson is devoted to helping his local community through his involvement with the United Way, the Summer Music Festival and The Beaverbrook Art Gallery. 

Upcoming Lecture

Dana Hanson believes physicians have a much larger role to play beyond health care. Drawing on his experiences representing physicians, both nationally and internationally, he will discuss his work at a public lecture entitled, International Medical Diplomacy: Challenging Issues for Us All on Friday, Oct. 22, at 10 a.m. in the Amphitheatre (level 1) at the Saint John Regional Hospital.

At 225 years old, UNB is one of the oldest public universities in North America. With more than 12,500 full- and part-time students from more than 100 countries, UNB has the best student-to-faculty ratio of Canada’s comprehensive universities, according to Maclean’s magazine. As the largest research institution in New Brunswick, UNB conducts over 75 per cent of the province’s university research. UNB’s two main campuses are located in Fredericton and Saint John, N.B.