Postsecondary institutions across Canada are raising flags in recognition of Pride month. The University of Waterloo has raised the Two-Spirit Pride flag and Intersex-Inclusive Progressive flag for the month of June. Georgian College has raised flags and installed crosswalk paintings on all of its campuses. Red River College Polytechnic has raised three flags to mark the start of National Indigenous History Month and Pride Month: the Treaty One flag, the Red River Métis flag, and a new inclusive Pride flag. The pride flag was designed in consultation with the polytechnic’s Knowledge Keepers’ Council, Students’ Association, and Gender and Sexual Identities working group and unveiled last year. Pride flags were also raised on Red Deer Polytechnic’s campus and outside of Keyano College.
The University of Lethbridge’s Dhillon School of Business has officially launched a new diploma in Indigenous Governance and Business Management (IGBM). The diploma gives learners an Indigenous perspective to business management, community development, governance, and entrepreneurship. Following completion of the IGBM program, students can ladder the diploma into ULethbridge’s Bachelor of Management degree program. Dhillon School of Business Dean Dr Kerry Godfrey said that this program meets a critical need in the workforce. “[B]usiness training, with a strong focus on Indigenous business and governance topics, is in demand and offers significant opportunities for graduates to meet the growing need in both private and public employment spheres,” said Godfrey.
McGill University lecturer Jonathan Dagenais has filed a lawsuit against the university stating that he was unfairly dismissed. The Journal de Montréal reports that Dagenais asserts that he was a “victim of discrimination” during the hiring process because he is a white man, and that the university had “no intention” of granting him a professorship that he applied to. Dagenais’s lawyer stated he was the best candidate for the role, but that he “never had a chance to get this position.” The $300K lawsuit claims that Dagenais’s fundamental rights were breached. The Journal reports that thirty students from the school of music wrote a letter to the dean requesting a reconsideration of the hiring decision. None of the allegations have been proven in court and McGill has declined to comment on the case.
A recent article from Thompson Rivers University discusses how the university has worked to Indigenize Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR). TRU PLAR Director Susan Forseille discusses how the university worked with Justin Young Thunder Sky, a traditional oral storyteller and mentor, to evaluate the PLAR process and pilot a version of the process that drew on a recorded spoken portfolio and interviews with other students Thunder Sky was working with. After the pilot project was complete, the team analyzed the outcomes; developed three committees to focus on components of PLAR such as interviews, the report structure, and the student handbook; and is now planning to visit Bands and talk about PLAR with them. The university is also seeking funding to conduct pilot projects with two Bands and create a competency-based PLAR cohort.
New Brunswick Community College has launched a Mobile Training Centre that bring flexible skilled training opportunities to people in New Brunswick’s rural, remote, and First Nations communities. The Mobile Training Centre is located in a custom-built 53-foot trailer that can be adapted to deliver training in areas such as health care, IT, and skilled trades. The centre will also offer enhanced apprenticeship opportunities. “The hands-on training and customized, on-demand programming that NBCC is so well known for is now mobile, anywhere in New Brunswick,” said NBCC President Mary Butler. The centre is supported by a $2M contribution from the provincial government.
Algoma University has officially unveiled Gabegendaadowin, a two-day training course for professional work environments that aims to address biases and create a bridge between non-Indigenous and Indigenous communities. In the program, learners engage in open learning where they will learn about culture and ceremony, treaty relationships, the TRC Calls to Action, and more. Gabegendaadowin–which means mutual respect, thoughtfulness, care, consideration, and awareness for others–is a reimagination of the curriculum from the 2018 Shifting Indigenous Frontline Tactics (SHIFT) initiative. With the new curriculum, the initiative can be applied to any organization that operates in or provides services to Indigenous communities or hires Indigenous people.
Support staff at five British Columbia postsecondary institutions have formally ratified a three-year agreement under the Government of British Columbia’s Shared Recovery Mandate. This ratification impacts approximately 2,100 Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) support staff at Camosun College, College of New Caledonia, College of the Rockies, North Island College, and Vancouver Island University. The agreement includes general wage increases, Indigenous cultural leave, and improved mental health supports. A statement from BC said that these negotiations were “focused on providing a fair and reasonable offer to public-sector workers that includes significant inflation protection, while ensuring that government has the resources to continue to invest in building a stronger province for everyone.”
York University’s Schulich School of Business has partnered with OneEleven to announce a joint Venture Studio. The Venture Studio is a part of Schulich’s new MBA in Technology Leadership that will feature guest lectures, project mentorship, joint events, and networking opportunities. Top students will be matched with member companies to complete strategic product and fundraising analysis for startups. “The Venture Studio will unlock a world of learning opportunities and relationships for our students,” said Venture Studio co-lead and Schulich Adjunct Professor Chris Carder.
Northlands College recently launched its redesigned website. The new website features more accessible information, profiles the accomplishments of Northlands graduates, places an emphasis on the college’s Indigenous initiatives, and more. “The revamp of Northlands College’s website marks a significant milestone in our journey towards excellence in education and community service,” said Northlands President Karsten Henriksen. “We are proud to unveil a platform that not only serves as a hub for valuable information but also reflects our commitment to empowering learners and advancing Northern Saskatchewan.”
Lethbridge College has officially joined the Pan-Canadian Smart Farm Network, a collaborative effort to enhance efficiency, sustainability, and resilience in Canada’s agricultural sector. The Network was first launched in 2021 by Olds College of Agriculture and Technology. Contributions from Lethbridge will expand the Network’s activities into southern Alberta and Canada’s Premier Food Corridor. “The network’s continued expansion across different agricultural zones and land bases brings more depth to the projects and technology evaluations which benefit farmers and developers,” said Olds VP of Research Dr Joy Agnew. “Lethbridge College brings expertise in irrigated crop production, gain storage management, and horticulture production, among other things.”