McMaster University

McMaster University

Faculty of
Health Sciences

Associate Vice-President, Academic

Susan Denburg

The Associate Vice-President, Academic, is a senior academic administrator who assists the Dean and Vice-President, Faculty of Health Sciences (FHS) with the academic and operational functions of the Faculty. This includes long-range planning, strategic decision making, and optimal resource allocation to best position the Faculty to deliver its mission. As Associate Vice-President (AVP), Academic, Dr. Susan Denburg’s portfolio includes strategic planning for academic growth and renewal, currently focusing on enrolment and program expansion at graduate and undergraduate levels. It also includes oversight of a number of programs and units whose work supports the Faculty’s academic mission such as the Health Sciences Library, Computer Services, and the Advisor for Professionalism.

As a member of the senior leadership team, Dr. Denburg works to fulfill her mandate by engaging with senior health sciences leaders to ensure congruence among the educational, research and health service programs of the Faculty. In addition, she represents the Dean and Faculty across campus in several administrative venues such as the Provost's council and the University Planning Committee. Participation in cross-Faculty collaborations is undertaken with the goal of identifying shared purpose and increasing university alignment.

Through the evolution of the AVP Academic role, Dr. Denburg is now formally responsible for Faculty Affairs.  A coordinated initiative is underway* whose goal is to support faculty from recruitment to retirement in developing and enhancing the skills needed to fulfill their scholarly and professional responsibilities and aspirations.  

A key responsibility of the AVP Academic role is to capitalize on emerging opportunities to creatively further the academic mission. In addition to fostering strong internal partnerships and strategic growth, Dr. Denburg works to leverage the Faculty’s strengths in health through collaboration with community partners. Exciting initiatives currently underway include:


Degree Completion Program in Health and Community Studies

Together with McMaster’s Faculty of Social Sciences and Mohawk College, the goal of this unique program is to prepare graduates for leadership in intersectoral community work that can advance the health and well-being of individuals and their communities.

LiveWell Partnership

Developed collaboratively with the YMCA, Hamilton Health Sciences and McMaster University, the mission of the partnership is to promote wellness through community access to innovative, evidence-based programs that actively support an integrated concept of healthy families and communities. New interdisciplinary educational and research opportunities will benefit several Faculties.


Through collaborative partnerships both internal and external to the Faculty, and by championing a culture of interprofessionalism, excellence, continuous learning, inclusiveness and innovation, the AVP Academic is well positioned to further the strategic goals and core values of the Faculty of Health Sciences.


* Termed CASCaDE (Continuing Academic and Scholarly Career Development)

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