Creating and sharing at drum making workshop in Orillia
The Aboriginal Resource Centre at the Orillia Campus held a drum making workshop on Jan. 15, with Luanna Harper of the Cree Nation and Scott Debassige of Wikwemikong First Nation. Read more...
The Aboriginal Resource Centre at the Orillia Campus held a drum making workshop on Jan. 15, with Luanna Harper of the Cree Nation and Scott Debassige of Wikwemikong First Nation.
The workshop was the first in a series of three planned – the next one taking place on Feb. 8 with a focus on storytelling and painting. Drum makers will unveil their creations at the final workshop on March 5 as part of a drum ceremony in the cafeteria (also part of a Diversity Week Art Exhibit).
Chi Miigwetch to the Students’ Administrative Council and ‘About Faith’ for their financial contributions and partnership.
On March 9, 2013, thousands of people gathered for the eighth Traditional Georgian College Pow Wow and celebrated aboriginal culture and traditions.
Just nine years ago, a small group of Georgian students and community members founded the Pow Wow. Since then, it has evolved into an extremely popular community-wide event hosted by the Aboriginal Studies department.
The 2013 Pow Wow continued the tradition of providing a gathering place for people to aboriginal people to share their culture with one another and the broader community.
The 2013 Pow Wow hosted more than 150 dancers, 12 drums, a Grass Dance exhibition, a Smoke Dance exhibition with Tribal Vision Dance and more than 18 vendors and artists from across the nation and Turtle Island. It also capped off Diversity Week at Georgian.
Megan Logan, a first-year student in Georgian College’s Aboriginal Community and Social Development program, has been selected by the Ontario government to serve on an influential committee that will help improve First Nations representation on juries and in the justice system.
The First Nation Juries Review Committee has the task of overseeing implementation of recommendations from the Hon. Frank Iacobucci’s report, First Nation Representations on Ontario Juries. The committee’s work will help to build a stronger, more accessible justice system for First Nation people.
Logan belongs to the Turtle Clan of the Delaware Nation, lives at Moravian of the Thames, located near London. She was named to the committee because of her leadership experience in Aboriginal youth organizations. She is a member of the Association of Iroquois and Allied Indians Youth Council, which she also represents on the Ontario First Nations Young Peoples’ Council.
The Owen Sound Campus will host a Louis Riel Remembrance Day on Nov. 15 in honour of this remarkable hero. Students, staff and faculty are welcome to attend. Aboriginal Services, and specifically Aboriginal Student Peer Mentor Heather Van Wyck, have been working hard to put this event together. Heather is a first-year Early Childhood Education student of Métis heritage.
Riel was a Métis Canadian politician and spiritual leader who fought for Métis rights, culture and their homelands in the nineteenth century.
The event will feature a flag-raising ceremony and opening prayer led by Senator Malcolm Dixon of the Great Lakes Métis Council and Metis Nation of Ontario at 9 a.m. Afterward, attendees can participate in Métis sash-weaving lessons and friendship bracelet workshops, and watch How the Fiddle Flows.
The Aboriginal Resource Centre at the Barrie Campus marked Ontario’s Louis Riel Day on Thursday, Nov. 14.
Louis Riel was the founder of Manitoba and a Métis politician who fought for Métis rights, culture and homelands.
The Niwijiagan (peer mentor) team, in partnership with the Infinite Reach program, hosted a special remembrance luncheon from noon to 2 p.m. Guests enjoyed buffalo stew, bannock and live music from fiddle player John Miller.
The Aboriginal Resource Centre was filled with wonder, laughter, music and applause June 21 as storyteller and teacher Basil Johnston was honoured with the 2013 Ontario Arts Council Aboriginal Arts Award. The event was part of National Aboriginal Day celebrations at the Barrie Campus. More than 100 friends, family and members of local Aboriginal communities filled a large classroom to see the awards handed out.
Ontario Arts Council Director and CEO Peter Caldwell presented the awards. Johnston, a member of the Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation, was honoured for his decades-long dedication to the celebration and preservation of Anishinabe heritage. His writings include memoirs, short stories and collections of traditional Objibwe tales.
Created in 2012, the Ontario Arts Council Aboriginal Arts Award celebrates the work of Aboriginal arts leaders who have made significant contributions to the arts in Ontario. Johnston requested that the award ceremony be held at Georgian’s Aboriginal Resource Centre because of the close connections that have been built between the centre’s staff and faculty and Aboriginal communities throughout the region.
Aboriginal Community and Social Development (Formerly Native Education - Community and Social Development)
Chief Donna Big Canoe is the first female chief of the Chippewas of Georgina Island and when elected chief in 2007 at the age of 31, was one of the youngest First Nation chiefs in Ontario. She holds her position with great honour and responsibility and regularly draws from her Native Community and Social Development background from Georgian College. Donna led the negotiations on behalf of her community for the Coldwater-Narrows Treaty, which could be one of the largest settlements in Canadian history.
Shki-Miikan (New Roads), Pre-Health Sciences, Massage Therapy, Aboriginal Community and Social Development
Every massage therapist becomes a unique blend of their life experience, skills, passions, values, and gifts. Massage can be part of holistic healing of body, mind and spirit.
I have massaged in many different settings since graduating: world class spas, destination inns, health clinics, healing lodges and addictions treatment facilities. I’ve even worked within Georgian’s Massage Therapy program. I’ve also worked with Native peoples in Native Traditional Healing Programs.
My favourite part of my job is seeing the before and after for even just one massage treatment. People are run down and full of life’s stresses. After one treatment people have a little more spark of light behind their eyes, and less stress weighing them down.
I am getting closer to embracing my new native spirit name, given to me by a Native Elder/Medicine Man two years ago. I am becoming Healing Hands Woman.
Taking the Shki-Miikan (New Roads) program and then later Aboriginal Community and Social Development program at Georgian College helped me feel proud of my Native Heritage. That pride turned into higher self-confidence and shaped me into the person I am today.
College can be challenging, but Georgian has many great counsellors, teachers, and administrative staff who were there when I needed help. The Aboriginal Resource Center became a safe haven for me to share my success, melt-downs, victories, and defeats.
I think what’s special about Georgian College is that it feels like a tightly knit community, where everyone want s you to succeed.
I plan to pursue more post-secondary education in public health. I was adopted into the Eagle Clan and the Eagle is a leader, flying high to take the voices of the people to the Great Spirit. I plan to help people find their own voices within themselves and discover a path back to health, balance and joy.
Aboriginal Community and Social Development, Addictions: Treatment and Prevention
I enrolled in Aboriginal Community and Social Development at the age of 30, after working on the line at Honda for 10 years. Georgian’s Barrie Campus was right in my back yard and everything I needed was right there.
As a member of Shawanaga First Nation, I loved studying teachings from other first nations. Here at Casino Rama, we employ Cree, Mi’qmak, Mohawk, Inuit and more, so those lessons were important. My teachers always made time for me after class, and I had a lot of questions. I doubt that kind of support exists in any other school.
I decided to complement my diploma with a certificate in addictions counselling at the Orillia Campus. That program taught me how to listen to people and draw on their words – an important skill for anyone, but especially for human resources professionals like me.
After graduation, I took a part time job as a greeter in the casino restaurant. When the posting came up for First Nation Affairs Administrator, a full time position, I decided to apply. I thought all my education would best be put to use there.
I was promoted to my current position, Business Partner, in September. I manage benefits, disability leaves and new hires and love the social aspect of my job. I remain an active member of the local Aboriginal community.