Who Am I?

Who am I?

Researched by E3161 Victoria Edwards (RMC 2003)

  • I was a Professor of English and the first full-time dean of the Canadian Forces Military College.
  • I served as president of the Canadian Linguistic Association, which was founded to “promote the scientific study of the written and spoken language of Canada”
  • I was a strong supporter of the then called University Training Plan – Men.
  • I mentored many UTs throughout the 1970s.
  • I was unofficially named the “grandfather” of Otter squadron due to my help in preparing the way for UTPNCM students to be more likely to succeed in their educational, military and family spheres while attending RMC.
  • I helped Otter Squadron survive its early years. I influenced college administrators to review their requirements of UTPNCM personnel.
  • The Class of 1978 – UTPNCM Honour Shield, named in my honour is presented annually to the UTPNCM graduate, voted by his or her peers, to have contributed the most to the positive development of the UTPNCM squadron during the entire time at RMC as determined by a Secret ballot of the Members of the UTPNCM squadron. The UTPNCM Honour Shield is co-sponsored by the UTPNCM graduating Class of 1978 and by my widow Faith, in my memory.
  • My widow, Faith was the keynote speaker at the 25th anniversary of Otter Squadron at the University Training Plan Non-Commissioned Members (UTPNCM) Association gathering and at the college parade in October 2002.

a) Dr. Walter Spencer Avis

b) Dr. William F. Furter

c) Dr. Wayne Kirk,

d) Dr. R.G. Haycock

Answer: a) Dr. Walter Spencer Avis

Dr. Walter Avis

One Comment

  • Mark De Smedt

    August 12, 2009 at 10:15 am

    I remember well Dr. Avis. He was my English professor in First Year in the Fall of 1977. My first class with him is etched in my memory. We had all taken our seats, already laden with our English textbooks, when he entered the class, introduced himself and asked each of us to sequentially introduce ourselves. Upon completing my self-introduction, indicating I hailed from Cold Lake, Alberta, Dr Avis rose from his desk and wrote the word “picture” on the chalkboard and invited me to read the word aloud. My pronunciation intrigued him and resulted in sharp queries on where else in Canada I had resided. When I revealed that I had lived in Toronto and Montreal, Dr Avis pronounced that I had a hybrid Alberta-Ontario accent, that my pronunciation of “picture” sounded more like “pitcher”, and Alberta was more like “Al-bir-da”. As his attention turned to the next cadet, my gaze fell to the Canadian Funk and Wagnall’s College English Dictionary on my desk – with clear text noting “Edited by Professor W.S. Avis, Dean of English Royal Military College, Past President of the Canadian Liguistic Association”

    I knew I was in for a challenging year, but at the end, I was very proud of the successful grade.

    Mark De Smedt
    Cdr (retired)