Jan 15, 2016
Posted in: Uncategorized
By Chelsie Sinclair
Chelsie Sinclair is fourth year student in the Saskatchewan Urban Native Teacher Education Program in Regina.
This semester, Indigenous issues have been on the news almost every week. From record Indigenous voter turnout at the October 19, 2015 Canadian federal elections in which eight Aboriginal members of Parliament were elected, two of whom have been appointed to the cabinet, to the Trudeau government declaration of a “new era of reconciliation” with Indigenous people. The issue of missing and murdered Indigenous women, and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC) reports on Residential schools have also been in the Canadian public conversation.
Indigenous issues have also taken a prominent stage in conversations around the University of Regina. Over the fall semester the Saskatchewan Urban Native Teacher Education Program (SUNTEP) students in Brenna Pacholko’s ECCU 300 class have been working to create presentations that focus on Indigenous issues and their implications for the teaching-learning process. We have gone beyond the classroom to engage in these conversations with the University of Regina community.
These discussions took place in the Aboriginal Student Center during the noon hour, where SUNTEP Regina students provided insightful information about diverse topics of interest concerning Métis and First Nations peoples. These events were better known around the University as ‘SUNTEP Talks.’ The one hour-long modules included topics such as: TRC recommendations, Costumes and Culture, Métis Identity, Reservation Water, and Anti-Racist Education. The discussions provided meaningful insights for the audience attending. The hope is that by continuing these SUNTEP Talks in to the New Year, the university community will be more aware and be engaged in conversations on issues that are of significant importance to both Indigenous and non-Indigenous populations of Saskatchewan.
As well, students and faculty will be inspired to address thought-provoking topics and provide imperative information for advancement in the decolonization process. Furthermore, SUNTEP Regina is working to have Indigenous voices heard throughout the campus and beyond.