May 9, 2018

Bring your idea for Indigenization and decolonization on campus to life

Indigenous Strategy’s new grant program puts opportunities into the hands of students, faculty, and staff
Reg Crowshoe, left, UCalgary senator and Piikuni elder, and David Lertzman, assistant professor, Haskayne School of Business, at the university's Indigenous Strategy Inner-City Dialogue Session held at Fort Calgary in 2016.

Reg Crowshoe, left, UCalgary senator and Piikuni elder, and David Lertzman, assistant professor.

Riley Brandt, University of Calgary

Do you have an idea for a project that would help to Indigenize the University of Calgary? The inaugural Intercultural Capacity Building grant from ii’ taa’poh’to'p, UCalgary’s Indigenous Strategy, wants to help students, faculty, and staff make their ideas a reality.

In Nov. 2017, UCalgary responded to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s calls to action with the launch of ii’ taa’poh’to'p; a commitment to create a rich, vibrant and culturally competent campus — one that welcomes and supports Indigenous learners, is inclusive of Indigenous perspectives in teaching and learning, and encourages community partnerships in research and academic programming. The Intercultural Capacity Building grant will allow for members of the campus community to directly contribute to this transformative new path.

“By increasing knowledge, we increase understanding, and begin the process of resetting, renewing, and revitalizing our relationships with Indigenous communities on the path towards reconciliation,” says Shawna Cunningham, director of the Indigenous Strategy. “This is a journey we walk together.” 

The grant’s theme of intercultural capacity is a reflection of what emerged during the development of the strategy in 2016 through a series of comprehensive community dialogues, campus-based focus groups, and public responses to an online survey. “It is designed to address the gap of knowledge that currently exists about Indigenous peoples in Canada by providing various ways for the campus community and affiliates to engage in cross cultural education and programming,” explains Cunningham.

Students, faculty, staff and postdoctoral scholars are encouraged to read ii’ taa’poh’to'p and think about how they can contribute meaningfully to Indigenization and decolonization at UCalgary via the Intercultural Capacity Building grant. Multiple grants of up to $10,000 will be awarded in August.