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Humans of Telfer – Dean Stéphane Brutus

Picture of Dean Stéphane Brutus in a blue suit.

Telfer is much more than a business school: it is a community of committed, outward-looking
and supportive people. I am extremely proud to be a part of it.

Q. What do you like most about Telfer and why did you choose this school?

A. I have been Dean of the Telfer School of Management for almost a year, having assumed the position on March 9, 2021. I can confirm that Telfer is a community of wonderful students, faculty, support staff, and graduates. It is both authentic and dynamic and it embodies very well the nature and culture of Canada’s diversity and bilingualism. These are the qualities that most attracted me to Telfer. Moreover, our school is enjoying a tremendous momentum right now: it is moving forward, and it offers many opportunities in terms of research and program growth and development.

Q. What has been your happiest moment so far at Telfer?

A. As I said, Telfer is a vibrant community where joy abounds. I have had many good moments at Telfer so far, but for now I would like to mention two. First, the B.Com. revision, which had long been awaited, was finally approved last year. This process had started 5 years earlier and was prolonged for several reasons. The approval of the new program was for me an unforgettable and emotional moment that will remain in my memory forever. The joy in the room at that moment was inexplicable and wonderful. It is important to remember that we are talking about an undergraduate curriculum that directly affects and transforms the present and future of many students. This revision has resulted in a more agile and flexible program for our students. It allows them to take courses from other faculties and tailor the program to their tastes and aspirations. This is one of the things that students have long been asking for, because previously the vast majority of electives were predetermined. The program was more rigid. Secondly, a revised curriculum means new professors. It is a joy for me to know that we are in the process of hiring new professors, and not just any professors: very high calibre professors who will contribute in a very positive way to the future of Telfer.

Q. What is the biggest challenge you’ve had to face so far?

A. Certainly, like any human being, I have found the pandemic to be no picnic. Coming into my position in a virtual environment in 2021 was not easy, as I had very little contact with students and faculty. A university is a human organization, not just a building or a technological arsenal: it is first and foremost a community of professors, students, and employees. It is a big ball of 100% human energy. The pandemic has robbed us of much of that humanity and managing a fundamentally human organization in the midst of a pandemic comes with many challenges. But the pandemic has also brought something to Telfer: it has taught us to push the boundaries of educational technology, for example.

I strongly encourage our students to check out the services and resources provided at the Career Centre
as early as possible during their journey at Telfer, and not wait until their final year or term
to seek advice from its team of professionals.

Q. What are your thoughts on the Telfer Career Centre? If you were to give one piece of advice to Telfer students so that they take advantage of this resource, what would it be?

A. It is very important that Telfer has its own career centre, and the Telfer Career Centre provides a tremendous service to students. One of the biggest challenges is the late engagement of some students who begin to look in our career services toward the end of their academic career. They start thinking about the job market and realize they need help preparing their resumé, learning how to conduct themselves in interviews, etc. I strongly encourage our students to look in the services and resources provided at the Career Centre as early as possible during their journey at Telfer, and not wait until their final year or term to seek advice from its team of professionals.

– Dean Stéphane Brutus holds a B.A. from Simon Fraser University, an M.A. and a Ph.D. from Bowling Green State University in Ohio, and a postdoctoral fellowship from the Center for Creative Leadership.

Inspired by Brandon Stanton’s Humans of New York, this weekly feature of the Telfer Career Blog will contain photography of individuals from the Telfer School of Management community and a corresponding narrative that gives us a glimpse into their lives.