Gabriel Dumont Institue

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Who Is it That I Really Am?

May 3, 2017

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By Vanessa G. Johnson

Who is it that I really am?
I am the daughter of an educator and the daughter of a man of the trades.
I am the “wild child”.
I am strong-willed, stubborn and ambitious
I also have a quiet and sensitive side.
Although I am fiercely independent I can’t wait to help someone grow and learn.
I am the granddaughter of a man who knew the land and the skies.
He taught me how to connect myself to the earth and what that connection means.
I am a niece of Gabriel Dumont,
I know where my fighter spirit comes from, it was bred into me.
I am the granddaughter of the Parenteau’s who fought alongside Dumont.
I also descend from Vikings.
The fight in my heart is not fair, I have no weakness in these bloodlines.
Who is it that I really am?
I am a University graduate, I am a current SUNTEP student.
I have learned who I am through trial and tribulations.
I have learned who I am through my journey in SUNTEP.
Learning Indigenous content and connecting the dots of its relevance is beyond words.
Feeling the connection to the Indigenous content, seeing my family name in the articles I read helps to bring the reality to who I am, and where I come from.
Who is it that I really am?
I am a strong, intelligent, and courageous Métis woman.
I am growing and learning and connecting the dots of all of my Métis and Indigenous heritage.
Who will I be?
I will be a Métis educator and teacher to students.
I will help lead young indigenous students to their full potential.
I will be and currently am an example of indigenous potential.
I am of humble beginnings and I’ve experienced much more than most my age.
I will bring my experiences to my potential and I will break barriers in my career.
Because, this is who I really am.

Vanessa is a third year student, Saskatchewan Urban Native Teacher Education Program (SUNTEP), Saskatoon

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Gabriel Dumont Institue

GDI is a Saskatchewan-based educational, employment and cultural institute serving Métis across the province

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