The University of Saskatchewan is holding Now Indigenous Achievement Week on their campus in order to recognize the academic merit of their Indigenous students and celebrate their culture.
The event has been taking place since the 90’s and was launched to create more awareness and knowledge about Indigenous culture, says Regan Ratt-Misponas, President of Indigenous Students Council.
It’s an opportunity for people to gather together. An opportunity to celebrate with one another.
This year the event will take place on February 5th to the 9th on the campus.
The week-long event will launch with a pipe ceremony and feast. Throughout the week several speakers have been invited to talk to the students. There will also be several artistic performances and an award ceremony that will honour forty-six Indigenous students for their academic excellence.
The celebration is open to the public and draws a large audience says Ratt-Misponas.
We are expecting students from all over campus. We have invited students from high schools to participate. Every year that we have participated in this, we have also had big numbers. We are expecting as many people as we can host.
Not all campuses hold week long Indigenous events for their students.
Aurora College in Yellowknife currently does not have a celebratory week for their Indigenous students. According to Communications Manager, Jayne Murray, the campus already has a large Indigenous student population of about seventy five percent and many of the events incorporate Indigenous culture. The campus tries to make a point to provide recognition on an ongoing basis.
Murray says that the Yellowknife campus sponsors and participates in an Honour Ceremony for Aboriginal High School and College Graduates in June.
The college is currently looking at developing a college-wide Indigenization strategy.