What ever happened to: Dr. Ron Weir


What ever happened to: Dr. Ron Weir

Article compiled from various sources

Professor (Emeritus) Dr. Ron Weir was posted to RMCC in 1968 as a Combat Engineer to join the Academic Faculty as Assistant Professor in the Dept. of Chemistry & Chemical Engineering. His career with DND spanned 55 years of which 44 years were at RMCC.

Ron was born and raised in Saint John, N.B. He started his military career as a Gunner in the Artillery Reserves, then ROTP to UNB where he completed his BSc in Chemical Engineering having won the Lt Governor’s Silver Medal in his graduating year.

He went to service as a Combat Engineer and then was sent to Imperial College of Science, Technology & Medicine (London, UK) as an Athlone Fellow where he completed his PhD. He returned to military service and was subsequently posted to RMC in 1968 to teach engineers and scientists. He transferred to the civilian academic staff in 1975 retiring from the CF as a Major.

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During his subsequent career at RMC, he has taught cadets in First to Fourth Years, MASc, MSc and PhD officers in the main subject areas of engineering thermodynamics, engineering materials, modelling & simulation, applied mathematics for engineers, and engineering chemistry.

His first passion was always teaching cadets and military officers. His greatest rewards in his personal life continue to be as a husband and father and while at RMCC were in providing academic and motivational counselling for struggling cadets, seeing their joy when they succeeded and then following their military careers.

His research has focussed on the experimental thermodynamics of materials in the gaseous, liquid, fluid and solid state especially engineering materials over a wide range of temperature from –270 oC to +1000 oC. To date, he has authored or co-authored over 150 papers in peer-reviewed journals, 55 refereed conference papers, seven book chapters, and authored and edited five books. His service to RMC includes chairing a host of university committees including Admissions 1980-2005 having read over 10,000 files, Head of Chemistry & Chemical Engineering 1990-95 and Dean Graduate Studies & Research 1995-2003 and again 2006-07. It was under his aegis with the help of colleagues that the RMC postgraduate programme was expanded to permit PhD study, to enrol civilian graduate students, and to allow RMC Faculty eligible status with the Granting Councils.

He is a Professional Engineer and most recent service to the profession includes Past President and founding member International Association of Chemical Thermodynamics, Past President Division of Physical & Biophysical Chemistry of the International Union of Pure & Applied Chemistry (IUPAC), and other senior posts within IUPAC. In formal retirement from DND, he continues to be involved with the refuelling file for the RMCC SLOWPOKE-2 nuclear reactor and also continues as the Senior Editor, Journal Chemical Thermodynamics (1993 to date), (Amsterdam) and Editor, Pure and Applied Chemistry (2010 to date).

Honours and awards include the RMC Teaching Excellence Award in 1993 and again 2006, Fellow Royal Society of Chemistry (FRSC), Fellow Engineering Institute of Canada (FEIC), Fellow Chemical Institute of Canada (FCIC), Fellow International Union of Pure & Applied Chemistry (FIUPAC), and the Lessing Medal (University of London).

The thousands of cadets whom he taught have seen his professorial eccentricities to include the wearing of a different light-hearted necktie for every lecture day of a term along with the need to sleep far less than a normal person, which brought him to his lab before 0500h each working day. Often students appeared in his lab by 0600h for volunteer tutorial help.

On the lighter side of life, cadets in some of his courses along with some colleagues celebrated his 50th birthday with a semi-embarrassing episode by ‘Sending in the Clowns’ to one of his capacity filled lectures. (photo right)

At the departmental retirement dinner for Ron, a few statistics were provided that reflect his commitment to the RMCC. He has given over 11,900 hours of Lectures, over 1100 hours of timetabled tutorials, attended about 444 meetings of the Faculty Board and 70+ meetings of the Faculty Council and 24 of the Senate of the University.

Finally convinced by their family, Barb and Ron moved to London (ON) where their children follow their professional careers. Ron continues as scientific editor of two international journals, pianist of 60 years and identifying avifauna across the world for the past 50 years.