Future Direction — Indigenous Initiatives

Over the past two years, the University of Alberta has engaged in a respectful, meaningful, and sustainable response to the Truth and…

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Over the past two years, the University of Alberta has engaged in a respectful, meaningful, and sustainable response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s Calls to Action by focusing our efforts on foundational change. This reflects efforts and initiatives stemming from all levels and corners of the institution.

We have built capacity in key teaching, scholarly, and administrative positions in the Provost’s Office, the Registrar’s Office, the Dean of Students Office, and the Centre for Teaching and Learning, as well as at the administrative and professorial level in nine faculties across four campuses. There has been continued growth in the Faculty of Native Studies, the Indigenous Education Council in the Faculty of Education, the Aboriginal Teacher Education program, the Aboriginal Student Services Centre, the very successful Transition Year Program, and much more.

We are now at the point where the U of A’s continued efforts in the important work of responding to the TRC’s Calls to Action require greater coordination across campuses, and between campuses and external communities. Toward that end, I am pleased to announce that the University of Alberta is creating a Vice-Provost, Indigenous Initiatives position. While the position profile is prepared and the search conducted, Dr. Chris Andersen, Dean of the Faculty of Native Studies, and Ms. Shana Dion, Assistant Dean, First Nations, Métis and Inuit Students, have agreed to take on the leadership of the Indigenous Initiatives work. Dr. Andersen and Ms. Dion will further the development of the Indigenous Strategic Plan and maintain oversight of the priority initiatives currently underway, while also leading the refinement of the Vice-Provost position profile and undertaking the search.

I want to thank them both for taking on these responsibilities and for their commitment to helping the university continue along the path to reconciliation. I also want to thank Deputy Provost, Dr. Wendy Rodgers, who is stepping back from the Indigenous portfolio to focus on other institutional priorities, for her tireless work and leadership over the past two years.

Steve Dew
Provost and Vice-President (Academic)