New Indigenous Studies program launches at York


TORONTO, Monday, Oct. 15, 2018 – A new Indigenous Studies program will launch at York University Wednesday bringing a focus on culturally-based, in-class and experiential learning to students, and engaging with Indigenous communities inside and outside of the classroom.

The new program will bring together a range of Indigenous teaching and learning and heightens York’s commitment to both. Students will have the opportunity to choose from a variety of courses, including those that delve into traditional knowledge and culture; treaties and the Indian Act; First Nations music, literature and cinema; Indigenous-Black relations; and urban and Metis perspectives. On-campus elders, regular gatherings with Indigenous speakers, and a placement course are also important features.

WHAT: Launch of the new Indigenous Studies Program at York University, opening with the Spirit Wind singers.

WHO: The following speakers will present at the program launch:

  • At 12:40pm, York U President & Vice-Chancellor Rhonda Lenton will speak.
  • At 1pm, Kathy Absolon (Anishinaabekwe), Laurier University associate professor and director of the Centre for Indigegogy will talk about "Building Indigenous Programming in Colonial Universities: Trailblazing and Stories.”
  • At 2pm, Hayden King (Anishinaabe), advisor to the dean, Indigenous Education, Ryerson University, and executive director of the Yellowhead Institute, will discuss "Research Centres, Faculty Recruitment & Curriculum Development: Notes on Restitution."
  • At 3:20pm, Indigenous Studies Program Coordinator Professor Bonita Lawrence will explain the program’s history, its importance and will sing the closing song.

WHEN: Wednesday, Oct. 17, from noon to 4pm

WHERE: Room C2, 2nd Floor, Second Student Centre (see Map), Keele Campus, York University

York University champions new ways of thinking that drive teaching and research excellence. Through cross-disciplinary programming, innovative course design, diverse experiential learning and a supportive community environment, our students receive the education they need to create big ideas that make an impact on the world. Located in Toronto, York is the third largest university in Canada, with a strong community of 53,000 students, 7,000 faculty and administrative staff, and more than 300,000 alumni.

York U's fully bilingual Glendon Campus is home to Southern Ontario's Centre of Excellence for French Language and Bilingual Postsecondary Education.

 Media Contact: Yanni Dagonas, York University Media Relations, 647-468-7850,