Convocation Profile: Rhiannon Arcand

24 June 2021


"tân’si Rhiannon Arcand nitisîyikâson ekwa maskekosak ochi nîya . Hi My name is Rhiannon Arcand, I am from Enoch Cree Nation."

Why did you choose to study Native Studies?

To be 100% honest, it was not my first choice, I wanted to be a genetic counsellor when I first got into the UofA, however I wasn't happy in the program, so I bounced around for a couple years until I found a community within the the faculty of Native Studies and discovered my love of teaching. As well as learning my language, I would not have been able to introduce myself in Cree without the faculty. 

Why did you choose to study at the University of Alberta?

I just applied to the University just to see what would happen, and to my surprise I got in. I was content on going to a trades school, but I rose to the challenge and enrolled to the UofA 

What was one of the most memorable experiences during your degree?

During my last year of presidency for the Native Studies Students' Association, we held our annual MMIWG March, and one of my leaders from my community honoured me by giving me a pendleton blanket. It really showed me that my community supported me and what I was doing for the community at the UofA 

What advice do you have for future Native Studies students?

Take part in the Native Studies Students' Association, it looks fantastic on your resume and you get to meet some extraordinary people. It was one of the best decisions I have made during my undergrad. 

What does the future hold for you?

Many, many years of teaching. After that I am hoping one day to become the next Educational Director of my community. Along the way come back to the UofA to pursue graduate studies.

Rhiannon convocates with a BA in Native Studies/BEd in in Secondary Education; Second Language Cree Major and Biological Science Minor on June 25, 2021.