Fostering respect and reconciliation

UVic’s goal is to be a global leader in creating better opportunities for Indigenous students, entering respectful educational and research partnerships with Indigenous communities, and advancing respect, reconciliation and mutual understanding.

People gathered at the JID launch event in the First People's House, UVic

At the launch of the world's first Indigenous law program

Indigenous law student Colby Lizotte, a member of the Métis Nation of Alberta, addressed Elders, scholars, national and provincial leaders gathered at First Peoples House for the launch of the new Indigenous law program. UVic’s joint degree program in Canadian Common Law (JD) and Indigenous Legal Orders (JID) is the first of its kind in the world. Graduates will be able to pursue a career in common law enhanced with a deep understanding of Indigenous legal knowledge.

Read more: At the launch of the world's first Indigenous law program

Onowa McIvor, UVic researcher

A world leader in Indigenous language revitalization

UVic’s Indigenous language revitalization research and education programs aim to ensure Indigenous languages in Canada are spoken by new generations.

“The most powerful act of reconciliation that anybody could do in terms of Indigenous languages is to learn the Indigenous language of the land they are on,” explains Onowa McIvor, whose maternal family is maskékow‑ininiw (Swampy Cree). McIvor compiled a three-page guide for UNESCO about Indigenous languages in Canada listing ways we can all help support them. Our thanks to Dr. McIvor for her words—HÍSW̱ḴE!

Read more: A world leader in Indigenous language revitalization

Chisasibi Nation at Convocation

Graduates expand the horizons of their communities

The entire staff at the Chisasibi Heritage and Cultural Centre in northeastern Quebec—all of whom speak James Bay Cree—enrolled in UVic’s certificate program in language revitalization, which teaches new approaches and practical strategies to strengthen language revitalization while honouring traditional knowledge and practices.

In 2018, 14 of the graduating students made the three-day journey to UVic to attend convocation. Their journey is more than geographical: it reflects the community’s determination to ensure their culture and language flourish. Mamihchihiiwemikusiiwin!

Read more: Graduates expand the horizons of their communities

UVic is home to Canada's first Indigenous Nationhood graduate program.

The Aboriginal Canadian Entrepreneurs Program was honoured as one of the world's best community-business-education collaborations.

UVic is the #1 Canadian comprehensive university for promoting Indigenous visibility (2018 Maclean's Rankings).

Read more Indigenous-focused stories