Skylight Faculty Advisory Council

Faculty involvement is vital to the success of Skylight’s programs, services, and initiatives.

The Skylight Faculty Advisory Council provides Skylight with informed guidance, serves as an ally in its mission, and ensures that Skylight remains connected to the teaching and learning priorities of every Science department. The Council meets two to three times per term and up to six times per year. It provides guidance on issues of strategic importance and fulfills a specific mandate established collaboratively each year.

The Council is composed of 12-14 members, including faculty leaders in science education with varying ranks, and with representation from all 9 UBC Science departments. Members are nominated by their department heads, their membership is considered a service to UBC and the Faculty of Science, and they are expected to serve on the Council for a minimum of two years. In addition, senior leaders from the Dean’s Office are represented as ex-officio members.

Serving on the Council has the following anticipated benefits:

Faculty Members

  • Contribute to Skylight’s mission, vision, and strategies
  • Be the first to know about upcoming initiatives
  • Represent their departments
  • Involvement in shaping decisions around teaching and learning
  • Involvement in educational leadership within and beyond UBC
  • Connect with educational leaders in other Science departments
  • Professional development for junior faculty
  • Potential work on science education projects to enhance teaching and learning in consultation/collaboration with Skylight team members


  • Essential feedback and planning assistance for Skylight’s programs, services, and initiatives
  • Advocacy for Skylight at conferences, departmental meetings, and events
  • Promotion of Skylight and the Faculty of Science as leaders in science education
  • Have a faculty contact inside and outside of the Faculty of Science

The Dean also allocates $5,000 per year to the Council for members to attend professional development conferences and events, and/or to support other related activities, in recognition of their work.

Since its inauguration in 2016, the Council has provided Skylight with a wealth of context knowledge, experience, and perspectives. Initially, the Council supported strategic decisions around integrating the Carl Wieman Science Education Initiative (CWSEI) into Skylight and refining the vision for Skylight’s subsequent expansion. The focus for 2017/2018 is on the Learning Technology Environment renewal project (Canvas), development of a framework for BSc Degree Outcomes, and implementing departmental teaching and learning strategic plans.

For more information about the Skylight Faculty Advisory Council, please contact Gülnur Birol, Director (

2018/2019 Council Members

2017/2018 Council Members

2016/2017 Council Members

  • Gülnur Birol, Director of Skylight and Council Chair
  • Warren Code, Associate Director of Skylight
  • Greg Bole, Senior Instructor, Zoology/Botany
  • Bruce Dunham, Senior Instructor, Statistics
  • Sara Harris, Professor of Teaching, Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Sciences
  • Tracy Kion, Senior Instructor, Microbiology and Immunology
  • Costanza Piccolo, Instructor, Math
  • Rachel Pottinger, Associate Professor, Computer Science
  • Georg Rieger, Instructor, Physics and Astronomy
  • Trish Schulte, Professor, Zoology
  • Jackie Stewart, Senior Instructor, Chemistry
  • Ian Cavers (ex-officio), Associate Dean, Academic, Faculty of Science