Together with the Yellowknives Dene First Nation (YKDFN), Trent University is launching a new Indigenous Environmental Studies & Sciences diploma for Dene students in the Northwest Territories, a program that blends Western sciences with Dene Indigenous Knowledge while offering experiential learning opportunities grounded in YKDFN culture.
“Trent’s leadership in Indigenous Studies and Sciences continues with this exciting and innovative new diploma program,” said Dr. Chris Furgal, program co-Director of Trent University’s Indigenous Environmental Studies/Sciences degree program. “The diploma program will provide Indigenous members of the Dene Nation with the opportunity to learn knowledge and develop skills to address complex environmental problems facing their own communities, governments, businesses, and society.”
This Dene focused Indigenous Environmental Studies & Sciences diploma is the first diploma program the University has developed in specific partnership with an individual First Nation. It is offered jointly by the Trent School of the Environment and the Chanie Wenjack School for Indigenous Studies in partnership with Trent’s Indigenous Environmental Studies/Sciences program. The diploma consists of 10 courses over two years with credits transferrable to a B.A. or B.Sc. program.
“This is a really good program. Residential schools and far-away from home education is a thing of the past; we are dealing with reconciliation now and we are hoping that education can be closer to home and family,” said Chief Fred Sangris of the Yellowknives Dene First Nation. “The family are the cultural keepers, and this is one reason we want our young people to be closer to their families and home for a brighter future outlook. As Yellowknives Dene First Nation leadership, we fully support the younger generation’s education and future economic prosperity as it happens in the community and still receive the same academic credits as they would have, if they attended southern universities.”
Year One courses will introduce students to foundations in Indigenous learning and the environment. Year Two courses will provide a deeper exploration into language, ethics, the environment, and critical relationships among these things.
All courses will offer a unique opportunity to incorporate Dene ways of knowing and being and their application to land and environment and be tailored to relevant environmental and ecological systems in the North. For example, course work is likely to include local cultural and environmental components including Dene land use protocols, Dene land stewardship practices, and traditional Dene land navigation skills.
To qualify, students must have successfully completed the equivalent of Ontario Grade 12 or qualify as a mature student.
About Trent University
One of Canada's top universities, Trent University was founded on the ideal of interactive learning that's personal, purposeful and transformative. Consistently recognized nationally for leadership in teaching, research and student satisfaction, Trent attracts excellent students from across the country and around the world. Here, undergraduate and graduate students connect and collaborate with faculty, staff and their peers through diverse communities that span residential colleges, classrooms, disciplines, hands-on research, co-curricular and community-based activities. Across all disciplines, Trent brings critical, integrative thinking to life every day. Today, Trent's unique approach to personal development through supportive, collaborative community engagement is in more demand than ever. Students lead the way by co-creating experiences rooted in dialogue, diverse perspectives and collaboration. In a learning environment that builds life-long passion for inclusion, leadership and social change, Trent's students, alumni, faculty and staff are engaged global citizens who are catalysts in developing sustainable solutions to complex issues. Trent's Peterborough campus boasts award-winning architecture in a breathtaking natural setting on the banks of the Otonabee River, just 90 minutes from downtown Toronto, while Trent University Durham Greater Toronto Area, delivers a distinct mix of programming in the east GTA.
For more information contact:
Celia Grimbly, Communications & Media Relations Officer, Trent University, (705) 748-1011 x6180 or email@example.com