Sarah Wright Cardinal

Sarah Wright Cardinal
Position
Assistant Professor
School of Child and Youth Care
Credentials

BA (UBC), MA (SIT), PhD (UVic)

Contact

Sarah Wright Cardinal

Sarah Wright Cardinal is a Cree educator from northern treaty 8 territory with Coast Salish and Nuu-chah-nulth extended family relations. She is an assistant professor whose primary focus of scholarship is healing from colonial disruptions to Indigenous identities, including the Indigenous child welfare system, and addressing these fractures with place and spirit-based pedagogies. Sarah’s academic work is strength-based, solutions focused, nurturing Indigenous knowledge systems and community connections.

Teaching and training

Sarah’s teaching practice is informed by living in her home territory for ten years where she learned from Elders, knowledge holders, and community while working on education projects throughout the Northwest Territories. She also draws from her previous teaching, consultation, and program development experience in Central America, Asia, and in Southern Canada. She has a transformative practice that nurtures respectful and meaningful engagement.

Research background

Sarah held a SSHRC Joseph Armand-Bombardier CGS Doctoral Scholarship (2014-2017) for her doctoral dissertation “Beyond the Sixties Scoop: Reclaiming Indigenous identities, reconnection to place, and reframing understandings of being Indigenous”. Her study involved gathering seven adoptees stories of healing from colonial disruptions to identity. Her findings include insights into decolonizing & Indigenous resurgence practices in formal and non-formal education settings and a theoretical contribution to Indigenous identity development.

Research interests

Indigenous identities, Indigenous youth development, land and spirit-based pedagogies, Indigenous child welfare & the Sixties Scoop, Indigenous storied research and participatory research.​

Current work

Sarah is invited locally and nationally to speak on her PhD research, she frames her work for practitioners, policy-makers, Indigenous wellness organizations, schools, NGOs and governments. She is working with the Legacy of Hope foundation on a Sixties Scoop curriculum. She holds a SSHRC Indigenous Research Capacity and Reconciliation Connection Grant to gather youth stories of mentorship with Coast Salish and Nuu-chah-nulth knowledge keepers.

Selected Publications

Wright Cardinal, S. (2017). Beyond the Sixties Scoop: Reclaiming Indigenous identity, reconnection to place, and reframing understandings of being Indigenous. (Unpublished doctoral dissertation) University of Victoria, Victoria, BC.

Wright Cardinal, S. (2016). A Framework for Indigenous Adoptee Reconnection: Reclaiming Language and Identity. Canadian Journal for New Scholars in Education, 7(1).

Wright Cardinal, S. (2016). Indigenous Social Enterprise & Youth Employment. Unpublished Brief for the Victoria Native Friendship Centre and Centre for Youth & Society, University of Victoria, Victoria, BC.