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Selkirk College Invites Indigenous Wisdom with Truth and Reconciliation Series

Selkirk College Indigenous Services is hosting a Truth and Reconciliation Speaker Series to help people better understand how to become involved. Last April, Dr. Leroy Little Bear appeared at the Nelson Civic Theatre.

 Indigenous Services at Selkirk College is leading the conversation about Truth and Reconciliation with a speaker series that brings Indigenous wisdom to the forefront.

In partnership with the Mir Centre for Peace, Jordan Abel will be the latest speaker to ask what it means to be Indigenous.

Abel is a Nisga’a writer from BC who is currently pursuing a PhD at Simon Fraser University where his research concentrates on intergenerational trauma and Indigenous literature.

Abel’s creative work has recently been anthologized in Best Canadian Poetry, The Land We Are: Artists and Writers Unsettle the Politics of Reconciliation, and The New Concrete: Visual Poetry in the 21st Century. Abel is the author of Injun, Un/inhabited, and The Place of Scraps (winner of the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize and finalist for the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award).

This evening will be held on October 26 at the Castlegar Campus in Room S-113 with tickets sold at the door ($16 general/$13 students).

Last spring, Dr. Evan Tlesla II Adams and Dr. Leroy Little Bear were guest speakers at Selkirk College. The two respected Indigenous leaders are helping Canadians better understand their collective role in the era of Truth and Reconciliation.

Selkirk College wanted to provide the wider community with opportunities for learning and help people new gain perspectives and guidance from diverse distinguished National Indigenous leaders. The speakers series has been themed into different topics relating to several the Truth and Reconciliation calls to action—the first covered being Health and Education.

Later this year, Selkirk College will have speakers relating to the themes of Child Welfare and Justice as the series continues.

“As a regional college we’ve had this amazing opportunity to invite the wider community together for shared learning during this important time of change,” says Jessica Morin, Indigenous Services Liaison. “The speakers that we have selected invite everyone to consider how Indigenous worldviews and ways of knowing can benefit our whole society, and look at a new path forward.”

Adams is currently the Chief Medical Officer of the First Nations Health Authority in British Columbia. Also an actor, his commanding presence was felt on the Tenth Street Campus in Nelson on March 7, 2018. He spoke passionately about how the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action can be implemented in our health care system.

Health care professionals, Selkirk College students, employees and community members heard a first-hand account of where and how change can enhance the health of Indigenous people.

Dr. Little Bear is an internationally renowned scholar at the forefront of Indigenous education. He recently received the Alberta Order of Excellence, is the recipient of a National Aboriginal Achievement Award, holds honourary doctoral degrees from the University of Lethbridge and the University of Northern British Columbia, is recognized as an Eminent Scholar in his community and has received an Urban Aboriginal Lifetime Achievement award from the Aboriginal Council of Lethbridge.

On April 4, 2018 at the Civic Theatre in Nelson, Dr. Little Bear was a shining example of scholarship, leadership, collaboration and advocacy.

“We were thrilled to hear the positive feedback from community members about the high caliber of Indigenous speakers that we were able to bring to the area,” says Leah Lychowd, Indigenous Services Liaison. “We are continuing the series this school year with hopes of bringing more incredible wisdom to our communities.”