Bishop’s University will break ground on a new Indigenous centre this summer. The centre is named Kwigw8mna–meaning “our (and everyone’s) house” in the Abenaki language–and will open in October 2024. Kwigw8mna will include spaces dedicated to Indigenous students and feature a gallery highlighting the history of the Abenaki people. “Kwigw8mna will provide a space for everyone to learn more about Indigenous perspectives and concerns, whether by visiting the house and interacting with Indigenous members of the Community, but also by being a resource where research on these topics lives and develops in real time in our community,” said Bishop’s Assistant Professor Dr Genner Llanes-Ortiz.
Queen’s University recently received $1M from alum Dr Nancy Tatham and her partner Donna Henderson to create a Chair in Indigenous Health at Queen’s Health Sciences. The chair will be held by Dr Sarah Funnell, who will focus on developing scholarship and Indigenous ways of knowing, fostering interdisciplinary knowledge translation, supporting mentorship opportunities, and collaborating with Indigenous communities and colleagues. “To transform health sciences education, we need to use Indigenous-informed and culturally-safe practices; decolonize our curriculum; and promote the overall health and well-being of Indigenous peoples,” said Queen’s Health Sciences Dean Dr Jane Philpott. “The role of Chair, Indigenous Health will help lead these efforts and moves us further on the path to reconciliation.”
The University of British Columbia and First Nations University have both launched new courses with the intent of supporting reconciliation and fostering a shared understanding of Indigenous matters. UBC’s new course—Weaving Relations—uses a lens of Indigenous-Canadian relationships to provide participants with a foundational understanding of Indigenous histories, people, and contexts, as well as settler colonialism. The self-paced, online course will also be used as a foundational part of the Indigenous Design and Engagement in Applied Science and Land and Food Systems (IDEAL) certification, which will launch in 2025. FNU’s Advancing Re(al)conciliation course is designed to “educate through truth-telling and inspire action.” Learners will gain an understanding of colonial systems of oppression and the value of local Indigenous perspectives and approaches.
The Université du Québec en Abitibi-Témiscamingue has unveiled its territorial recognition principle, which acknowledges that the university is located within Nitakinan, the Algonquin term designating the Abitibi-Témiscamingue and Outaouais regions. The principle was developed by a Territorial Recognition Committee in consultation with Indigenous communities. The principle acknowledges that the educational institution is “part of a system stemming from colonisation” and consequently commits to taking “concrete actions” towards reconciliation, especially through education and research. “UQAT is committed to embodying its territorial recognition principle through the implementation of institutional actions, while remaining attentive and continuing to focus on equitable and inclusive collaboration with First Peoples,” said UQAT Rector Vincent Rousson.
The University of Windsor has begun construction on a new student residence, which is set to improve the student experience and address the student housing crisis. The six-storey building will have 452 beds, six community lounges, a house lounge, laundry facility, and a 275-seat food hall. “We’re really excited to be able to accommodate more of our undergraduate and graduate students both from the area, from across Canada and from across the world,” said UWindsor VP of Finance Operations Gillian Heisz. The residence is slated to open by Fall 2025 and was made possible through a public-private partnership with Tilbury Capital.
Canadian Mennonite University’s Menno Simons College–which offers interdisciplinary education exploring conflict, poverty, and inequality–will be downsizing its programming and moving out of its current headquarters in downtown Winnipeg. The satellite campus was run in collaboration with the University of Winnipeg, and college’s physical presence will be limited to the UWinnipeg Riddell Hall basement. The move comes in response to a drop in admissions and a growing demand for e-learning. As of June 30th, the only option available for incoming students will be a condensed, three-year version of the conflict resolution degree; most of the courses for this program will be offered online. CMU will retain all instructors, who will shift to teaching CMU’s peace-building master’s program, among other subjects.
The British Columbia Institute of Technology has reached a tentative agreement with members of the BCIT Faculty & Staff Association, under the province’s Shared Recovery Mandate. The agreement, if ratified, will apply to approximately 3,000 BCIT employees, including technology instructors, technical staff, specialized and part-time faculty, assistant instructors, researchers, curriculum development professionals, librarians, program advisers, and counsellors. Details about the tentative agreement will be shared upon completion of the ratification process.
The University of Saskatchewan’s (USask) Livestock and Forage Centre of Excellence will receive $6.6M over the next five years through the federal and provincial governments. The funding will be used support the centre’s research and educational activities in the livestock and forage industries. “The provincial economic growth targets we’ve set for the end of this decade connect directly to our agriculture industry and to our livestock producers,” explained SK Agriculture Minister David Marit. “This funding for the LFCE directly supports the kind of innovative work that helps our livestock sector not only stay globally competitive but remain a leader when it comes to best practices.”
Collège Boréal has launched a new website and brand image. The new brand image features a streamlined, modern logo with a colour gradient that both symbolizes evolution and evokes the Northern lights. Three rays are depicted to represent Boréal’s educational, cultural, and community crossroads. The new website uses a contemporary interface design to offer a simplified and user-friendly experience. “Collège Boréal’s new brand image, both modern and close to our roots, reflects our institution’s major evolution since its creation,” said Boréal President Daniel Giroux.
The Government of Manitoba has announced that it will increase the maximum Manitoba Student Loan benefit by over 40%. Starting on August 1, the maximum weekly benefit will increase from $140 to $200. The changes were made to support students, align with the federal government’s decision to raise the Canada Student Loan maximum, and align with the provincial government’s Skills, Talent and Knowledge Strategy. “Access to higher education is critical to growing our provincial workforce and this increase will help reduce financial barriers so more students can pursue post-secondary opportunities,” said MB Advanced Education and Training Minister Sarah Guillemard.