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2019 OCSBOA Conference Program


October 2-4, 2019

Horseshoe Resort, Barrie

Theme:  Celebrating Our Success:  Past, Present and Future


Dr. Mark McGowan - Keynote Speaker

Address:  Catholic Schools in Ontario :  Is History on Our Side?  Dr. McGowan will discuss some of the major phases of development of the Catholic school system in Ontario: how past experiences may have formed the great challenges facing these schools in the 21st century.

Professor Mark McGowan is a Professor and Deputy Chair of History at the University of Toronto. From 2014 to 2016 he served as the Senior Academic Advisor to the Dean of Arts & Science on International matters. Prior to that, he was Special Advisor to the Vice-Provost Students  at the University of Toronto. From 2002-2011, he served as Principal of St. Michael's College. He has directed Book & Media Studies and the Celtic Studies Programs; he has also won four university teaching awards. Mark specializes in Canadian, Irish, religious and immigration history. In 2009, his book Death or Canada was the basis for a joint award-winning Canada-Ireland docudrama on the Famine, aired in Canada, Ireland, the USA and Britain. His books on Ireland, Canada, immigration, and religion have won numerous prestigious awards.  His fourth book, The Imperial Irish: Canada’s Irish Catholics Fight the Great War, 1914-1918, was published in May 2017. Within the Catholic educational circles, he is known for his booklet The Enduring Gift: The History of Catholic Education in Ontario and his service, in 2014, as a Trustee in the Durham Catholic District School Board. His latest book, published in March 2019, is called, It's Our Turn: Carrying on the Work of the Pioneers of Catholic Education in Ontario. In 2018, he was appointed Senior Advisor to the President of the University of St. Michael's College, for Catholic Education.