Indigenous Environmental Studies and Sciences offers a variety of courses for students interested in bringing together Indigenous and Western science to address complex environmental issues. The foundation upon which the program is based recognizes both the strengths and limitations of any single perspective, and seeks to develop interactive and integrative thinking to address environmental, health, and social issues. Learning and problem-solving are focused on benefiting both Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities.
The program is partially supported by The Metcalf Foundation and The Aboriginal Education Council.
With the unique nature of the Indigenous Environmental Studies and Sciences program growth has been rapid. Starting as an Emphasis in 1999, it became a Specialization in 2002, and a degree granting program in 2009. Future growth is anticipated in undergraduate and graduate studies, and students will be offered opportunities to expand their studies into 5 key areas of knowledge:
- Indigenous Foods and Medicines: growing, gathering and use.
- Indigenous Peoples Health and the Environment: the relationship between local environment and community well-being.
- Natural resource and ecological restoration: community development and remediation.
- Environmental planning: for ecological and cultural sustainability.
- International Environmental Network: sharing and creating innovative Indigenous solutions