Maxwell A. Cameron Memorial Award
The Maxwell A. Cameron Memorial Award is given annually by the BC Teachers’ Federation to students completing the final year of the Bachelor of Education degree in elementary and secondary school teaching, in each of the eight approved teacher education programs—Simon Fraser University, Thompson Rivers
University, University of British Columbia, University of British Columbia Okanagan, University of the Fraser Valley, University of Northern British Columbia, University of Victoria, and Vancouver Island University. The recipients of the award are those students who are considered by the dean of
the Faculty of Education, and director of the division concerned (elementary or secondary) to be outstanding students in the graduating class who have:
- initiated, worked, or participated in a project that created positive change globally or in their local community, and or
- been actively involved in issues related to poverty, LGBTQ rights, women’s rights, antiracism, peace, global, or environmental issues.
The award is named after Maxwell Cameron who headed the Department of Education at UBC in the mid-1940s. Prior to that, he was on staff as an associate professor and director of UBC’s summer school.
Dr. Cameron gained prominence when, in 1945, he undertook a major study and report on educational cost for the provincial government. Appointed as a one-man commissioner, Dr. Cameron held open hearings in major centres across the province. His report called for:
- the establishment of a uniform basis for taxation and setting up a commission to equalize assessment;
- an increase in the share of the cost of education provided by the province from 32% to 55%;
- a reduction in the number of school boards from 600 to fewer than 100; and
- an increase in teaching staffs and commensurate decrease in class sizes.
The BC Teachers’ Federation, along with many other educational groups endorsed the Cameron Report, and many of its recommendations were implemented by the government of Premier Hart.
Lists of the recipients of the Maxwell A. Cameron Memorial Award in recent years may be viewed below.