The Individualized Program within Concordia’s School of Graduate Studies has a new, catchy name and a new director. Formerly known as SIP (Special Individualized Program), the program will now be known as INDI.
Brad Nelson, associate professor in the Department of Classics, Modern Languages and Linguistics (CMLL), takes over from David Howes, professor in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, as the INDI Program’s new director.
“His work bringing together researchers from different fields and disciplines, his experience as a department chair, plus his commitment to developing the graduate program in Hispanic Studies make Brad a logical choice for this position,” says Concordia’s Vice-President, Research and Graduate Studies, Graham Carr.
The incoming director says he looks forward to meeting with faculty members from across the university who support INDI, as well as students, to improve the program’s offerings wherever possible.
“Ultimately, the goal will be to make INDI even more attractive and more competitive than it has been in the past … and reward the faith that the institution has placed in the program over the last several years,” said Nelson.
He also underlined the program’s robustness, a testimony to the work of outgoing Director David Howes and his team.
“I sort of feel like a kid who has been given the keys to a new car before he graduates,” Nelson said during his address to the assembled faculty members in the Engineering, Computer Science and Visual Arts Integrated Complex (EV Building). The program is functioning well, he added, and the fact that it continues to expand “is a clear signal that it is an institutional priority.”
Paula Wood-Adams, interim dean of Graduate Studies, thanked Howes for his significant contributions as the Individualized Program’s director. “We’re here to celebrate the work that David has done over the last few years, and to thank him for all of his efforts in bringing the program to where it is now.”
“We have streamlined the curriculum and opened up many research currents, which are evolving in interesting ways,” Howes said at the event. He recounted how one of the last things he did as director was work with the program committee to come up with a new name for the program, one that’s more in keeping with the “indie” spirit of the city that’s home to the university.
“When you think of Montreal, you think of independent music — Arcade Fire — you think of independent film — Jacob Tierney,” Howes said. “Montreal is the indie capital of Canada in terms of films and music, and now of academia.”
The term INDI is also more open to individual interpretation, he added. “Individualized, independent, interdisciplinary: the associations are endless, and they should be.”
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