John R. Grace, OC, BESc'65

Professor Emeritus and Former Canada Research Chair in Clean Energy Process, University of British Columbia


Dr. Grace received the Lauchland Engineering Alumni Medal in 1984.

Q & A

What makes you proud to be Canadian?

I am proud to be Canadian because, better than most other countries, Canada has been able to forge a society where people care for each other, help those who are less fortunate, both inside and beyond our  borders, and balance social, economic and environmental needs, while striving to right historical wrongs of the past.

Any advice you would offer an incoming Engineering student?

Develop good work habits. Be attentive. Achieve balance in your life, where working hard academically is balanced with outside interests.  Learn to be a problem solver.  Assist others, not only to be altruistic, but also because the best way to learn something is to teach it to others.  Look for opportunities where you can make a difference. Remember that learning must be a lifelong quest, including what you learn in formal courses, but also what you experience outside the classroom, in work settings and in life in general.

Why do you value your Engineering degree?

I value my Engineering degree for several reasons:  It gave me a broad background in basic sciences, engineering and humanities which I have been able to build upon and exploit in my research and teaching.  
It helped me to become a problem solver, able to tackle a broad range of challenges.  It provided opportunities to be involved in extracurricular activities and to work with other people, helping to build character and
broadening my experience.