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A.C. McEown - Portrait

Head and shoulders image of A.C. (Colb) McEown, first Vice-President (Acad), University of Saskatchewan.

Bio/historical note: Alpheus Colborne (Colb) McEown became Assistant to the President in 1949. As the President's senior administrative officer, McEown's was responsible for the general administration and finances of the University including academic and fiscal planning, budgeting and buildings and grounds. In 1961 McEown became the University's first V.P. (Acad). This change reflected an administrative change rather than a functional one. He had functioned as the President's senior administrative officer and defacto V-P since 1949 when he was appointed Assistant to the President. McEown's primary duties were the general administration and finances of the University and included academic and fiscal planning, budgeting and buildings and grounds. He also acted as secretary of the Board of Governors. In 1968, McEown was appointed Vice-President (University) as part of the re-organization that resulted from the ammendments of the University Act. Shortly after his appointment , McEown announced his resignation but died before leaving the position.

Arthur J. Porter - Portrait

Head and shoulders portrait of Arthur J. Porter, Dean of College of Engineering.

Bio/Historical Note: Arthur J. Porter (1910-2010) OC, PhD, DSc, FRSC, FIEE,, was born in Ulverston, England. While studying at the University of Manchester, Porter helped build a differential analyzer—one of the world’s first analogue computers, using a Mecanno construction set. In 1937 he accepted a fellowship at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He helped build the Rockefeller differential analyser—the most ambitious analogue/digital computer built to date. It was used extensively for projects during World War II. In 1949 Porter accepted a position with Ferranti Canada and worked on the DATAR system. DATAR combined data from a convoy of ships’ sensors, providing a single ‘overall view’ that allowed the commander to make better-informed decisions. Soon afterwards, in the early 1950s, Porter was one of six Canadians selected to work on Project Lamp Light; working on data processing expertise was crucial to this top-secret North American air defence initiative. In 1958 Porter became the fourth Dean of Engineering at the University of Saskatchewan. There, along with Norman Moody and Dr. William Feindel, Porter established Canada’s first biomedical research program. In 1962 Porter moved to the University of Toronto to chair their new Industrial engineering department—one of the first in the world. While there, Porter also helped establish the University’s biomedical program. During the late 1960s he was involved in projects that bridged the gap between culture and science. He was the first acting director of the University of Toronto’s Centre for Culture and Technology. Porter also chaired the Science and Technology Advisory Committee when Montreal hosted the World’s Fair—Expo 67. Porter died in 2010 at age 99 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

Arthur J. Porter - Presentation

Bob Hills (left), president, Engineering Students' Society, presents a Robert Hurley painting to Arthur J. Porter, departing Dean of Engineering.

Bio/Historical Note: Arthur J. Porter (1910-2010) OC, PhD, DSc, FRSC, FIEE,, was born in Ulverston, England. While studying at the University of Manchester, Porter helped build a differential analyzer—one of the world’s first analogue computers, using a Mecanno construction set. In 1937 he accepted a fellowship at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He helped build the Rockefeller differential analyser—the most ambitious analogue/digital computer built to date. It was used extensively for projects during World War II. In 1949 Porter accepted a position with Ferranti Canada and worked on the DATAR system. DATAR combined data from a convoy of ships’ sensors, providing a single ‘overall view’ that allowed the commander to make better-informed decisions. Soon afterwards, in the early 1950s, Porter was one of six Canadians selected to work on Project Lamp Light; working on data processing expertise was crucial to this top-secret North American air defence initiative. In 1958 Porter became the fourth Dean of Engineering at the University of Saskatchewan. There, along with Norman Moody and Dr. William Feindel, Porter established Canada’s first biomedical research program. In 1962 Porter moved to the University of Toronto to chair their new Industrial engineering department—one of the first in the world. While there, Porter also helped establish the University’s biomedical program. During the late 1960s he was involved in projects that bridged the gap between culture and science. He was the first acting director of the University of Toronto’s Centre for Culture and Technology. Porter also chaired the Science and Technology Advisory Committee when Montreal hosted the World’s Fair—Expo 67. Porter died in 2010 at age 99 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

Arts Building - Exterior

View of Arts Building with second classroom wing in background. Students are standing and walking on sidewalk in front; students also sitting on a bench. Trees in foreground.

Bio/Historical Note: The Arts Building was constructed in four major stages from 1958 to 1967 at a cost of $758,491. The first stage of construction began in September 1958 with the raising of the classroom wing. The classroom wing was constructed by W.C. Wells Construction, and was designed by Shore and Moffat. It was officially opened on 28 September 1959. The second phase of construction was completed in 1960. It involved the building of the first seven floors of the Arts Tower, the Arts Theatre, and a link joining the Tower to the classroom wing. The Arts Tower project was contracted to Bird Construction while design of the building was again carried out by Shore and Moffat. The Arts Tower was officially opened on 16 January 1961.The addition to the Arts Tower was constructed from 1963-1965 by Bird Construction. While the initial tower completed in 1960 had been designed to accommodate another three floors at a later date, by 1963-64 improvements in structural building techniques allowed the architectural firm of Shore and Moffat and Partners to add an eleventh floor to the building designs. The second classroom wing of the Arts Building was completed in 1967. This fourth and final phase of construction was built by W. C. Wells Construction and was again designed by the architectural firm of Shore and Moffat and Partners. The building on opening contained a gross area of finished space amounting to 82,980 square feet. In addition, 3,564 square feet of unfinished space was provided in the basement. Plans to adjoin the Addition to the planned Law-Commerce Complex were also included in the design. The building was considerably larger upon completion than initially planned, and included laboratory space as well as classrooms. On opening, the second classroom wing contained one 350-seat theatre, one 150-seat theatre, six 95 seat classrooms, six 45 seat classrooms and one 20 seat classroom as well as three departmental seminar rooms. In addition to these, four laboratory units were added to the building for Psychology, Geography, Languages and the Computation Centre. The second classroom wing was faced in tyndall limestone while the interior main corridors of the building were lined with painted concrete block. In 1974 a pedestrian connection was built to the Arts Building for $394,342. It was designed by BLM Architects, and was contracted to Poole Construction. Portions of the Arts Building, including the theatre, were renovated as part of the first phase of the Place Riel Project. This renovations were designed by D. H. Stock and Partners, and were contracted to Smith Bros. and Wilson. They were completed in 1976 for $178,080.

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