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Honorary Degree Citation - Sister Jacqueline St-Yves

By: Clarence Epstein, October 2014

Mr. Chancellor, it is my honour to present to you Sister Jacqueline St-Yves, Mother Superior of the Sisters of Charity of Montreal, better known as the Grey Nuns.

Sister Jacqueline accepts this degree today on behalf of her congregation, in recognition of their work in healthcare, in education, in spiritual leadership and in community service. Founded in 1737 by Marguerite d’Youville to help the poor, the Grey Nuns were the first women’s religious community in Canada to dedicate themselves to the full range of social works.

Over the course of their history that spans 4 centuries, the Grey Nuns have established a remarkable number of institutions in our country: 73 acute care hospitals, 10 schools, 59 long-term care facilities, 5 mental health services, 14 community oriented services as well as a major research center. Without question the Grey Nuns became a driving force behind the advancement of healthcare treatment and health promotion in Canada.

A member of the order since 1967, Sister Jacqueline has been a vital member of her congregation, serving in numerous leadership roles, including Secretary-General. Before her appointment as Mother Superior, she held various positions in Manitoba, including vice-president of St. Boniface General Hospital. In the 1970s, she fostered young minds as a teacher.

Elle a également œuvré au rapprochement des communautés francophones et anglophones du Québec, du Manitoba et de la Saskatchewan, sa province natale.

Sœur Jacqueline a reçu un baccalauréat en éducation à l’Université de l’Alberta et un baccalauréat ès arts à l’Université du Manitoba. Elle continua ensuite des études en écriture sainte à Rome. Elle a obtenu une maîtrise en administration de la santé à l’université d’Ottawa.

For her outstanding work, Sister Jacqueline has been recognized with numerous distinctions. Among them are the Prize of Excellence from St. Boniface General Hospital and the Prix Alexandre Taché from St. Boniface University for her support of Franco-Manitoban causes.

Most recently she contributed her remarkable energy and enthusiasm to our own community here at Concordia, by overseeing the monumental transfer of the majestic Grey Nuns Motherhouse.

Mr. Chancellor, on behalf of Senate and the Board of Governors, it is my sincere privilege and honour to present to you Sister Jacqueline St-Yves, so that you may confer upon her the degree of Doctor of Laws, honoris causa.

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