Welcome to our Indigenizing the Academy website.

As summer turned into fall of 2012, 275 delegates from 33 post-secondary institutions came together at the University of the Fraser Valley’s Aboriginal Gathering Place. The purpose of the gathering: to discuss indigenization – a way of making universities welcoming for indigenous cultures, knowledge, learners, faculty, and staff.
Those who came to the gathering overflowed out of the UFV Longhouse/Gathering Place; they listened with their eyes, their ears, their spirit, and their hearts.
And in exchange, the keynote speakers, the guest speakers and visiting dignitaries spoke from the heart: shared their thoughts, and engaged in dialogue, speech and conversations that “needed to be had.”
The ceremony, the sweats, the food, and the sharing created an environment in which all speakers and listeners could reach down deep into themselves to bring renewal, understanding, and transformational growth to each other.
To find the notes from our Gathering, click on Resources. At this same tab, you can find videos from the Gathering, other Gathering resources, information on the Gift of Cedar, and more videos and resources that for you to browse.

To continue discussions started at the Gathering click on Dialogue. You can search the blog entries by category and comment on the entries. The collated discussions can also be found in Resources.
Future events can be found under Events

Recent Postings

Workshop II Breakout Group 3 (Senior Administrators 1) Hiring, Retention, Tenure, & Promotion

Hiring, Retention, Tenure, & Promotion Workshop Breakout II Breakout Group 3 (Senior Administrators 1) Facilitator: Ken Tourand Note taker: Alyson Seale   We have been indigenizing for a long time “It’s all about relationship building”   Overwhelming Indigenizing can be overwhelming and we will need support in order to do this successfully     Indigenization […]

Workshop Breakout II Group 2 (Faculty 1) Hiring, Retention, Tenure, & Promotion

Hiring, Retention, Tenure, & Promotion Workshop Breakout II Breakout Group 2 (Faculty 1) 1.     What considerations are critical to hiring and retaining Indigenous faculty and staff? Connections to local communities/territories Urban (relocated) Aboriginal people Mentoring, team teaching Courses/programs Collective agreements 2.     What are the workload expectations of faculty and staff? Indigenous events and departmental expectations […]

Workshop Breakout II Group 1 (Indigenizers) Hiring, Retention, Tenure, and Promotion

Hiring, Retention, Tenure, & Promotion Workshop Breakout II Breakout Group 1 (Indigenizers) University staff overlook Aboriginal staff and go to non-aboriginal staff as experts  University staff tend to not go to the staff (perception of or lack level of education) and tend to go too non-Aboriginal staff thinking they are the experts Hiring process and […]

Workshop I Breakout Group 7 (Senior Administrators 2) Personal and Institutional Reflections on Indigenizing the Academy

Personal and Institutional Reflections on Indigenizing the Academy Workshop I Breakout Group 7 (Senior Administrators 2) A need to work more closely with all levels With good and bad past history institutions have some ‘trust building’ to do with First Nations communities. How to indigenize? Need a definition Need to start with Aboriginal advisors Have […]

UFV hosts and caucus: Dr. Peter Geller, Shirley Hardman, Indigenous Affairs, Dr. Eric Davis

It is very easy to underestimate the challenges involved — UFV Caucus Reflections

Staff (Caucus) observed that it was very easy to underestimate the challenges involved, and wondered how to make the curriculum more balanced for aboriginal students, and if there were a way to incorporate and promote understanding through staff training and development. It was suggested that ceremonial activities, like sweats, were important to indigenization, as they […]

NVIT President Ken Tourand addressing Indigenizing the Academy Gathering UFV

Learn to think with your heart: Reflections on Indigenizing the Academy

Indigenizing the Academy workshops produced a lot of reflection around the best way forward for everyone, indigenous and non-indigenous alike. It was noted by Senior Administrators that Student retention was closely tied to support structures, including a culturally safe (decolonized) space, funding support, daycare support, community involvement, aboriginal advisors, elders in residence, and Indigenous faculty and programming. Elders […]

Dr. Mark Evered of University of the Fraser Valley

Personal and Institutional Reflections on Indigenizing the Academy– Report from Senior Administrators

Dr. Mark Evered, UFV   During Senior Administration workshops, it was noted that Student retention was closely tied to support structures, including a culturally safe (decolonized) space, funding support, daycare support, community involvement, aboriginal advisors, elders in residence, and Indigenous faculty and programming. Elders and community members should be most welcome; and Traditional Knowledge could […]

Elders, Aboriginal advisors and Culture: a “way of being”, not an event

Communities where there are no bands makes the community liaison job difficult.  The students do not self-identify as First Nations. There is an advisory committee to build a better approach to the First Nation program and approaches but the systemic barriers need to be acknowledged before they can be changed. Changes have begun in the […]

Learning Does Not Need to Be Uncomfortable

Just because learning was uncomfortable for me does not mean that I need to make it uncomfortable for my students. I try very hard to create compassionate, genuine, reciprocal relationships with my students.