Office of the Dean

Interim Vice-Provost and Dean

Deborah Burshtyn

Interim Vice-Provost and Dean


Debby Burshtyn is Interim Vice-Provost & Dean of the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research and a Professor in the Department of Medical Microbiology & Immunology. She is both an administrator and an active researcher.

Debby has held a series of administrative roles in graduate education beginning as graduate coordinator from 2009-2013. During that time, Debby began advocating for adapting graduate education and mentoring to fit the changing funding and employment landscape. She led departmental career planning workshops for students and developed the first workshop on mentoring graduate students for the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry in 2014. Debby joined FGSR as Associate Dean in July 2015 and became Vice-Dean in July 2016.

As Vice-Dean, Debby provided leadership to the Associate Dean Team on student academic affairs. Debby led initiatives designed to effect long-term positive change on graduate students’ learning experiences including designing the quality assurance processes for graduate programs and promoting the development and assessment of learning outcomes in graduate education linked to career preparation.

As Interim Vice-Provost and Dean, Debby provides leadership for graduate education across campus by advocating for the needs of graduate students, fostering a collaborative approach to incent curriculum renewal and interdisciplinary program innovation, prioritizing equity, diversity, inclusion and wellness for graduate students, and sustaining FGSR’s flagship professional development programming.

Debby obtained a BSc from McGill University (1989) and a PhD from the University of Toronto (1994) in Immunology followed by a postdoctoral fellowship at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (Bethesda MD). In 1999 she joined the University of Alberta as an AHFMR Scholar, and since then, Debby has been awarded ~$2.8 million in external research funding for her ongoing research on genetic variation and the response to virus infection in transplantation. 

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