Profound thanks and warmest well-wishes to Dr. André P. Grace, who is retiring from the Faculty of Education’s Department of Educational Psychology at the end of June. Dr. Grace joined the Faculty as an assistant professor in the Department of Educational Policy Studies in 1999.
Soon after joining the Department of Educational Psychology in 2013, Dr. Grace was named Canada Research Chair in Sexual Gender and Minority Studies (Tier 1). He played a key role in establishing the 2SLGBTQIA+ youth leadership retreat Camp fYrefly in 2004, the Institute for Sexual Minority Studies and Services (iSMSS) in 2008, and the Comprehensive Health Education Workers’ (CHEW) Project in 2014.
Throughout his time with the Faculty, Dr. Grace’s award-winning scholarship was inseparable from his endorsement of research-based policy-making and interventions to support sexual gender minority youth in education, social services and healthcare.
“We say the research is only as good as the degree to which we can use it to advocate for children and youth,” he said in a 2016 interview.
In addition to earning numerous grants through the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) and the Canada Institutes for Health Research (CIHR), Dr. Grace has received the Larry Beauchamp Senior Researcher Award (2019), the Killam Annual Professorship (2011), the McCalla Professorship (2008), and the Coutts-Clarke Research Fellowship (2002), as well as the Confederation of Alberta Faculty Associations’ Distinguished Academic Award in 2018, among numerous external honours.
Dr. Maryanne Doherty, Associate Dean Undergraduate Student Services, said that while Dr. Grace might be best known for supporting the wellbeing of sexual and gender minority youth, his advocacy for comprehensive sexual health education promoted safe, healthy, inclusive school environments for all students.
“André’s research, teaching and service have been outstanding in that he has continually advocated and enhanced the lives of children and youth, and especially those 2SLGBTQIA+. His tireless energy, expertise and dedication have been for the Public Good, our U of A campus, our Faculty and beyond to international contexts,” she said.
“As a sexologist and sexuality educator, I am privileged and honoured to have been alongside André since the beginning of his academic career. He continually educates and inspires me to advocate for sexual-health human rights for children and youth, including access to comprehensive sexuality education. I know he will continue his excellent work into and throughout his retirement.”