Two Canadian universities make indigenous studies a requirement

Starting next fall, every undergraduate student at the University of Winnipeg and Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Ont., will be required to take a course in indigenous studies.

See Full Article

It’s a plan that university administrators hope will allow every student to learn the basics of the traditions, history, and modern-day issues of First Nations, Metis and Inuit people.

Wab Kinew, the associate vice-president of Indigenous Affairs at University of Winnipeg, says it was students who initiated the new requirement. There had been a few incidents of racism on campus and the student association met with the aboriginal student council to brainstorm solutions.

“And what they came up with was that education could play a role in fighting racism – education toward combating ignorance,” Kinew told CTV’s Canada AM from Winnipeg Thursday.

There’s been a lot of positive reaction to the announced change, he said, especially since it comes so soon after the release of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission report.

“A lot of people are recognizing that learning about indigenous people is crucial to be an active and engaged citizen in our country,” he said.

There has also been a certain amount of “push-back,” Kinew conceded, but he said that has to do with some students mistakenly believing that the new rules will require all students to take the same course. That’s not how it will work, he said.

“Rather, we’re saying there’s a list of dozens of courses across many different departments,” and students can choose one that fits with their degree program or that just piques their curiosity.

Since the University of Manitoba announced the new requirement, administrators at other universities have been contacting University of Manitoba leaders to find out how they can implement a similar mandate.

Kinew says he hopes the idea will spread even further, so that all teachers, lawyers, doctors and public sector workers are encouraged to also learn the basics of indigenous history and contemporary issues.

“Everybody working in this country should have at least a basic understanding of these issues so that they can engage with them in an informed and meaningful way,” he said.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Deaths of doctors, nurses highlight virus risks they run

    World News CTV News
    ROME -- Air raid sirens sounded across China and flags flew at half staff in a tribute Saturday to victims of the coronavirus pandemic including the health care "martyrs" who have died while fighting to save others. Source
  • Trump fires watchdog who handled complaint that triggered impeachment

    World News CBC News
    U.S. President Donald Trump has fired the intelligence watchdog who handled the complaint that triggered his impeachment. Trump informed the Senate intelligence committee Friday of his decision to fire Michael Atkinson, according to a letter obtained by The Associated Press. Source
  • Trump fires watchdog who handled whistleblower complaint that triggered impeachment

    World News CBC News
    U.S. President Donald Trump has fired the intelligence watchdog who handled the complaint that triggered his impeachment. Trump informed the Senate intelligence committee Friday of his decision to fire Michael Atkinson, according to a letter obtained by The Associated Press. Source
  • Another member of fire panel resigns, criticizes PG&E plan

    World News CTV News
    BERKELEY, CALIF. -- The former chief financial officer for a Northern California city destroyed in a 2018 wildfire caused by Pacific Gas & Electric equipment is trying to upend the utility's plan for getting out of bankruptcy because she believes the company is shortchanging the people devastated by its misconduct. Source
  • Alberta health minister used confidential information to call protesting doctors

    Canada News CBC News
    When Dr. John Julyan-Gudgeon went to a hospital event to protest health-care cuts, he didn't expect it to lead to an after-hours phone call on his personal cellphone from the health minister. But that's exactly what happened. The doctor attended a provincial funding announcement at the Red Deer Regional Hospital on Feb. Source
  • Judge demands FBI provide new details about its surveillance

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- The chief judge of a secretive national security court demanded Friday that the FBI provide him with details about some of its investigations after the Justice Department inspector general identified problems with more than two dozen wiretap applications. Source
  • Major credit card companies raise tap limit to $250 to help cut spread of COVID-19

    Canada News CTV News
    TORONTO -- Major credit card companies have increased their tap limit to $250 to help customers who want to make less physical contact while shopping during the COVID-19 pandemic. MasterCard and Visa raised the tap limits from $100 to $250 and the Retail Council of Canada is hoping that Interac will soon follow. Source
  • 'Always new expenses': Lawsuits filed as anniversary of Broncos bus crash nears

    Canada News CBC News
    It's been almost two years since the deadly Humboldt Broncos bus crash in Saskatchewan and with the solemn anniversary comes a closing legal window that has seen several lawsuits filed in court. Sixteen people died and 13 others were injured after a transport truck barrelled through a stop sign and into the path of the bus carrying the junior hockey team on April 6, 2018. Source
  • Ontario premier slams Donald Trump's decision to cease exports of N95 masks to Canada

    Canada News CTV News
    TORONTO -- Ontario Premier Doug Ford has slammed United States President Donald Trump's decision to cease exports of manufacturing giant 3M's N95 face masks to Canada. "I just can't stress how disappointed I am at President Trump for making this decision," Ford said at Queen’s Park on Friday. Source
  • Relatives of the Kennedy family reported missing after canoe ride in Maryland

    World News CTV News
    Authorities were searching Friday for the daughter and a grandson of former Maryland Lt. Gov. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend after a canoe they were paddling in the Chesapeake Bay didn't return to shore. Gov. Larry Hogan identified the missing relatives as Maeve Kennedy Townsend McKean, 40, and McKean's 8-year-old son, Gideon Joseph Kennedy McKean. Source