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Donor spotlight: dr. Garth Huber

Dr. Garth Huber (BSc’84, PhD’88) has been a champion of physics throughout his nearly three decades as a professor at the University of Regina. Through an initial $25,000 donation to create the Huber Undergraduate Physics Scholarship, to which he continues to add funds, he is expanding his dedication to physics students and their success. Learn more about Dr. Huber and the impact he is having. 

1.    You were a student at the U of R, and eventually became a professor here as well, how did you choose your field of study and why did you pursue it at the U of R? 

When I was an undergraduate in the U of R Physics Department, the decision was taken by the senior administration to grow the Department in a new research path that involved doing “suitcase physics” at major national and international laboratories, rather than to rely solely on the U of R’s in-house research facilities. This decision makes a lot of sense, as it allows U of R researchers to play an important role in the “big science world stage”, despite being from a relatively young institution far from the big population centers. I happened to be at the right place at the right time, and was able to take full advantage of this strategic decision, and contribute a lot to the U of R’s growth in this area as a result.

2.    You have been a donor at the U of R for nearly three decades. Why do you believe philanthropic support toward our students is so important?

One of the best gifts we can give to the next generations is the gift of knowledge. As a student myself, I had scholarships throughout most of my studies, and I want to similarly help others. 

3.    What inspired you to create the endowed Huber Undergraduate Physics Scholarship? 
My parents really encouraged me in my studies and were very supportive every step of the way. After they passed on, I wanted to have some way to recognize how much they helped me, as well as to help others in their studies. This scholarship is dedicated to their memory. As a discipline, physics is as much about learning to think properly through a problem as it is about learning the various laws and important facts. This is deeply rewarding, but the path to knowledge takes huge effort and many sacrifices. I really want to reward and support those who are working hard along this path.

4.    What was your motivation to make a planned gift to the U of R, and leave a lasting legacy for future generations of students?

The U of R has been a very big part of my entire academic career, and I am very thankful for all of the institutional support over the years. However, the lack of endowed chairs and scholarships at the U of R strikes me as two of the things that are keeping the institution from developing to its full potential. Many larger Physics Departments at other universities benefit from endowed chairs and scholarships, and I really hope that through planned gifts like mine, our Department might similarly benefit.  

5.    What would you say to anyone considering leaving a legacy gift to the University?

The U of R has a lot of high quality faculty and highly motivated students. We really need your gifts to provide them with the resources they need to succeed. Although government support is essential, it cannot all that is required. When I was a Post-Doctoral Fellow at Indiana University in the USA, the President-Emeritus of that institution had a great saying, which was “hire the best faculty you can, give them the resources they need, and keep out of the way”. Legacy gifts are an extremely important part of that equation.

Supporters like you help to make a difference every day.