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image of the college building from across the water


Peter Gzowski College

Take a look at Gzowski College: Trent’s youngest college!

Aniin. She:kon. Tansi. Boozhoo. Koolamaalsii. Welcome! Peter Gzowski College is in the big yellow building named Enwayaang.  Enwayaang translates from Anishinaabemowin as "the way we speak together." Made up of a collection of dedicated and passionate students, Gzowski College is a place meant to unite the community’s roots with the new members who will define its future.

You may have noticed that the spelling of our building’s name is changing from Enweying to Enwayaang, to reflect the local dialect of the Michi Saagig people. The meaning of the word and  the pronunciation of (en-waay-ing) remain the same.  The change comes on the advice of the Elders and Traditional Knowledge Keepers Council, who provide guidance to Trent on cultural matters, including honorific naming. We recognize and honour the work that Shirley Williams, Edna Manitowabi and others have done in keeping the language alive; they have undertaken extraordinary work over the last half century and have been very gracious in facilitating the change from Odawa to Michi Saagig spellings.

While many people refer to this building as Gzowski College, we are one of many departments, programs, and schools housed in the Enwayaang building. Our naming shows our collaborative spirit, which has been a part of our identity since we opened, and the phrase “the way we speak together” means that we work under one roof to provide many kinds of community to students, staff, faculty, Elders, and other guests who come to us.  Gzowski College is proud to be part of this collaborative Enwayaang community and we respectfully include all of our neighbours in the building in our collegiate community. 

Our college is named after Peter Gzowski, a Canadian journalist and broadcaster who made his living engaging in dialogue about Canada.  Students at Gzowski College pursue their passions in the same way their college namesake followed his passion for Canada, its culture, the north, and Aboriginal people.  Our partnership with the First Peoples House of Learning drives many of our programming initiatives: the future is made up of those who speak together and work alongside each other in a spirit of collaboration.

Environmental sustainability, fair trade and indigenous ways of knowing are some of the themes that guide us.  Watch for annual events such as a trip to the Curve Lake Pow Wow, a Ten Thousand Villages craft fair, and community lunches, guest speakers, and student workshops. We also collaborate with our other neighbours in Enwayaang (the First Peoples House of Learning, the Chanie Wenjack School for Indigenous Studies,the School of Business, the Office of Research and the Departments of  Economics and Mathematics) to bring you speakers and events.

The colours of the building are derived from the four colours of a medicine wheel:  yellow, red, black and white.  The design team used the vision statement developed by the First Peoples House design honouring the land, creating a respectful community and acting as a beacon.  The ground floor of the building is open to create a sense of sitting gently on the land.  The Atrium (lower level of Gzowski with the "Red Lights") is open to students to sit and study, grab a bite, and check out the latest in Gzowski news. It’s also where you’ll find classrooms and the First Peoples House of Learning, including the First People’s Lecture Hall, the Nozhem Performance Space, the Ernie and Florence Benedict Room (Gathering Space) and other ceremonial spaces indoors and out.  The Gzowski Student Cabinet office is also located on the lower level.

Get excited about joining the Gzowski community!

Whether you are on campus or off campus, if you have an idea and you want it to grow, we can help. Gzowski College is young, open to new ideas, and interested in promoting a sustainable and energized future.  See you soon!

Gzowski Facts

  • The colour of our building has a specific name: Ochre Number 33.
  • The building houses a strong collection of artwork by Indigenous artists.
  • Every September, we officially welcome new members to our college by presenting them with a Gzowski College scarf.  Our scarves are beautiful and unique! We are the only college without a “crest”: instead, a beautiful image of a loon serves as our logo, taken (with permission) from a print by Roy Kakejamic.
  • Our scarves also do not have our College motto on them because it is pretty long: “Nendimowinan e-niigaanbidegin zhidchigaadenoon nongwa - The minds of the future are made great beginning today."
  • Gzowski College is pronounced Zaaa-ski