About the Center

For more than twenty years, the Pacific Northwest National Resource Center on Canada (NRC), formed by the University of Washington (UW) and Western Washington University (WWU), has been awarded Title VI support by the U.S. Department of Education in recognition of its leading role as a center of excellence on Canada. Located near the Canadian border and animated by an expanding web of cross-border academic and business linkages, the NRC has developed strong specializations in trade, security, Arctic foreign policy, Aboriginal self-determination, and environmental management.

Canadian Studies is one of eight Title VI Centers in the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies, where teams of renowned scholars conduct cutting-edge research on global issues. The NRC combines comprehensive undergraduate and K-16 outreach programs with exceptional graduate training and specialized research in many professional schools. As secretariat for the Pacific Northwest Canadian Studies Consortium, the NRC also serves almost fifty colleges and universities in the region. The NRC mission is to increase the number of scholars, educators and professionals knowledgeable about Canada in the Pacific Northwest and across the nation.

The Center offers a major, minor and International Studies Track in Canadian Studies; an Associated Students program for undergraduates; Foreign Language and Area Studies fellowships and a Professional Development Program for graduate students; an Affiliated Faculty program; and a K-12 Teacher Associate program. The Center also offers public programming to increase knowledge and understanding of Canada, the Canada-US relationship and Canada’s role in the world.

Founder W.A. Douglas Jackson

WA Douglas JacksonW.A. Douglas Jackson (1924 – 2009) was the founder of the Canadian Studies Center. In 1988, Jackson, along with colleagues Robert Monahan and Donald Alper from Western Washington University, received the first title VI grant for a National Resource Center – The Pacific Northwest National Resource Center on Canada.

Doug was from Toronto where he long-dreamed of being a concert pianist. Instead, he pursued a doctorate at the University of Maryland where he studied both Canadian history and Soviet geography. In 1955, he was appointed to the UW Geography Department and the Far Eastern and Russian Institute.

https://jsis.washington.edu/canada/wp-content/uploads/sites/20/2017/06/WA-Douglas-Jackson-2.jpgIn the mid-80s Doug began working with colleagues Bob Monahan and Don Alper at Western Washington University to develop a joint program in Canadian Studies. In 1988, the UW and WWU received the first Title VI grant from the US Department of Education, to form a National Resource Center on Canada. At the same time, he worked with Bryan Downes from Oregon to hold the first meeting of regional Canadianists in what would become the Pacific Northwest Canadian Studies Consortium.

Doug served as director of the Center for over 12 years, taught and inspired hundreds of students, and spoke at community functions at every opportunity.

Fun Fact!

Did you know Thomson Hall is named after Canadian, David Thomson, who was acting president of the University of Washington in 1926-27? 

David ThomsonDavid Thomson was born in 1871 in Ontario, Canada. He attended the University of Toronto and graduated in 1892. After graduation, he studied at the University of Chicago and later served on the faculty of the same University as an assistant professor of Latin. In 1902, he became a professor of Latin at the University of Washington. During the 1908-1909 school year he studied at the University of Munich, Germany. In 1917, he became the dean of the college of Liberal Arts and served in that position until 1931. He became the acting President of the University in 1926 and served until 1927. He was named Vice President of the University of Washington in 1931 and until his retirement, he served as the Vice President of the University, Dean of Academic Guidance, and Vice Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences all at the University of Washington. Thomson died October 28, 1953 at the age of 82.