Oct 23, 2019
Posted in: Education
July 19, 2019 marked an important milestone in Métis education. The Métis Nation–Saskatchewan (MN–S) President Glen McCallum and Education Minister Dr. Earl Cook announced $89 million in post-secondary education funding for Métis across the province. The funding was part of a national Métis Nation 10-year Education Strategy.
As the post-secondary education arm of the MN–S, Gabriel Dumont Institute was tasked with delivering two critical areas for federal investments identified in the Métis Education Strategy. These include direct financial support for Métis post-secondary students; and delivering support for post-secondary education student services.
On August 2, 2019, the online application portal for the Métis post-secondary funding went live on the Institute website amid much public anticipation. With the application deadline of August 16, 2019 and less than three weeks before the new school year starts, there was a feeling of apprehension despite the strong confidence in the IT Team under the leadership of Gareth Griffiths.
But everything went very well. The Web Group, including Gareth, Audrey Hestand, David Morin, and James Oloo, conducted an effective social media campaign to ensure that as many people as possible were aware of the Métis post-secondary funding application.
Between August 2 and August 16, Facebook posts about the funding application reached 56,800 people – which is more than the populations of Prince Albert, North Battleford, and Warman combined! The post had over 6,400 clicks and 121 comments. Twitter posts on the same received 2,010 impressions. ‘Impression’ refers to the number of times the tweet was seen by Twitter users.
Gabriel Dumont Institute Selection Committees are currently reviewing applications received. It is expected that the applicants for the Métis post-secondary education funding will be notified during the first week of September 2019.
It is a wonderful time at the Métis Nation as we mark the beginning of something good, namely, support for Métis post-secondary education. Until now, inequities in the way that the federal government supports the post-secondary education needs of Indigenous students has led to the exclusion of Métis students from funding available to other Indigenous students.