Professor In Residence

Professor in Residence

The Professor in Residence program offers you the opportunity to connect with a professor outside of the classroom. A professor is assigned to each first year residence community—and the professors are excited to engage with and get to know students outside of a classroom setting.

The Professor in Residence team is diverse in experience and committed to:

  • Offering weekly drop-in hours to answer questions
  • Being present in the community
  • Attending residence events and programs
  • Helping make professors more approachable for students

Additionally the team offers a diverse range of engaging programs on topics related to well-being, academic success, and more.

Your Professors-in-Residence

Totem Park


Michael Griffin

Office Hours:
Wednesdays | 5-6pm
Totem Park Commons Block

Learn more about Michael!
Hi, I’m Michael! I’m an associate professor in Classics and Philosophy at the University of BritishColumbia. I study the philosophers of the ancient Graeco-Roman world, especially the vibrant intellectual traditions that emerged around Plato and Aristotle during their lives and later, during the rise and fall of the Roman Empire. I am particularly interested in the practice of philosophical education (paideia) in late antiquity, and the role that philosophy – ancient and modern – can play in cultivating public citizenship and human flourishing.

Place Vanier

Place Vanier Residence

Lynn Norman

Office Hours:
Wednesdays | 6-7pm
Gather Dining Room

Learn more about Lynn!

Hi, I’m Lynn! I teach biology here at UBC. When I started university, I remember being uncertain about what I wanted to do for a career – I just knew that I loved animals and wanted to do something that involved them. As it turned out, I was still not sure what I wanted to do after I finished my undergraduate degree.

After embarking on graduate work on the movement ecology of garter snakes, I discovered that I adored field research, but also, much to my surprise, teaching ecology labs. I have taught biology at UBC since 2001, and for a few summers I also helped coordinate the Vertebrae Anatomy Labs (Biology 204).

When I have spare time, I try to get outside, watch a movie (ideally one with dragons), or play a little World of Warcraft (For the Alliance!). I am super excited to be a part of the Professor-in-Residence program at Place Vanier. I love being asked questions and helping students, and I can’t wait to meet you!

Orchard Commons


Kayli Johnson

Office Hours:
Mondays | 5-6pm
Open Kitchen Dining Room


Simon Lolliot

Office Hours:
Mondays | 5-6pm
Open Kitchen Dining Room

Learn more about Kayli and Simon!
We (Kayli and Simon) met in England while finishing our PhD’s at the University of Oxford. Simon’s research focused on intergroup contact and reconciliation whereas Kayli’s background is in organic chemistry (specifically enantioselective organocatalysis – if you don’t know what that is, come and ask me!). Kayli likes competitive sports and collaborative board games. Simon likes pretending he is being chased by zombies while running and competitive computer games. We both enjoy hiking local mountains and exploring the coast on our paddle board. We’re happy to chat about course work, university life, armchair philosophies, or whatever is on your mind! We are looking forward to serving as your Professors in Residence this year in Orchard Commons.

Connect with your Professors in Residence on Facebook!

Check out a great story on the Professor-in-Residence and the Professor-in-Collegia programs.

“I was excited about the opportunity to connect with students outside the classroom, to put a human face on the faculty, and to bring an academic dimension to the social life of residence. — Dr. Michael Griffin”

Dr. Michael Griffin

Dr. Michael Griffin, an associate professor of Greek and Roman philosophy, lives in Totem Park as a member of the Professor in Residence program. We sat down with him to talk about the program.

What was your motivation for joining the program?

From my experience in first year at UBC, I remember how huge and sometimes faceless the university can feel, especially if your first encounter with faculty is from the back of a huge lecture hall. I was excited about the opportunity to connect with students outside the classroom, to put a human face on the faculty, and to bring an academic dimension to the social life of residence.

I did my doctorate at the University of Oxford, which features a college system that houses professors, grad students, and undergraduates across all disciplines in the same residences. That was a great opportunity for me to connect with researchers and interesting peers outside my area of academic interest and comfort zone, and I think the Professor in Residence program at UBC has a chance to do the same thing.

Dr. Michael GriffinHow has your experience been so far? 

Fantastic. The students and RAs, and my colleagues on the Residence Life team, have been amazingly welcoming.

I’ve enjoyed conversations about all kinds of subjects, and I’ve learned a great deal. My lecturing style has adapted based on discussions with students and watching my colleagues on the Academic Team (A-Team) work with students.

Dr. Michael GriffinWhat were some of the activities you ran last year? 

I ran a “pizza and ideas” film night each term. In Term 1 we watched The Matrix (1999) and talked about questions that film raised. I offered academic workshops on exam strategies, picking a major, and term papers, and I held regular office hours at a table in the Commonsblock. I also invited different floors and houses to dinner during the term to talk about their experience with faculty at UBC.