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Lucien Matte

Lucien Matte (1907–1975) was a Jesuit priest and educator.

Born in Quebec City in 1907, Lucien Matte attended the Universities of Montreal and Laval where he earned degrees in philosophy, natural science, theology and education. In 1930 he entered the Jesuit order and was ordained in 1938.

Matte came to Sudbury in 1962 when he was appointed president of the University of Sudbury. He was the driving force behind the creation of the Sudbury Teacher College at Laurentian University.

Lucien Matte, SJ (right) at Haile Selassie University, 1951, with Emperor Haile Selassie I

Education had been a special focus in his life. In 1945 he was asked by the Emperor of Ethiopia, Haile Selassie, to reorganize Ethiopia’s school systems. Haile Selassie wanted his schools to be based on the Canadian system. Matte reorganized the primary and secondary schools, founded the University College of Addis Ababa in 1954 and in 1961 he became president of the newly formed Haile Selassie University.

In recognition of the work Matte did for Ethiopia, Haile Selassie donated $10,000 toward the University of Sudbury’s building fund.