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Recognizing National Indigenous History Month

Author: UNB Newsroom

Posted on Jun 1, 2022

Category: UNB Fredericton , UNB Saint John

In June, we commemorate National Indigenous History Month. This is a time to celebrate the first people of this land, their histories, leadership and cultures. It is important to honour the remarkable contributions of Wabanaki people within our province, as well as First Nations, Inuit and Métis throughout Canada.

To transform intentional thinking into meaningful action is a crucial element in our UNB Toward 2030 strategic vision. Piluwitahasuwawsuwakon1, which means allowing our thinking to change so that action will follow in a good way toward truth, is a commitment identified within the strategic plan.

At the University of New Brunswick, we strive to be an evolving institution of learning that produces and disseminates knowledge. We recognize and sincerely respect Wabanaki history, culture, knowledge, languages, spirituality, beliefs and rights of the Wabanaki nations.

To allow us to continue on our path to peace, friendship, justice and Truth and Reconciliation, a number of initiatives have been launched across our campuses. These initiatives, which were made possible by the Mi'kmaq-Wolastoqey Centre (MWC) and Indigenous advisors, will help us to honour and support the history, heritage, resilience and diversity of Wabanaki and Indigenous people at UNB.

Last month, we launched a voluntary Indigenous self-identification form which provides Indigenous students with the opportunity to connect with the greater Indigenous community on campus and access cultural and spiritual guidance. It also assists the University in providing appropriate services to support Indigenous students.

Jean Bartibogue has also been recently named UNB’s new Kcicihtuwinut2 - or Knowledge Carrier-in-Residence. In addition to offering spiritual and cultural guidance to UNB students, Jean will advise the UNB community on ways to address the 94 Calls to Action that were put forward by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada.

I am deeply grateful for the support the MWC and Indigenous advisors provide to the Indigenous community at UNB. Thank you for sharing your knowledge, time, culture and experience with us. We are stronger as an institution because of your guidance and leadership.

To celebrate National Indigenous History Month and National Indigenous Peoples Day (June 21), the MWC will be sharing a series of posts on Facebook and Instagram. These posts will include information on Wabanaki history and events that are happening throughout the territory.

I encourage you to attend events in your community and learn about the Peace and Friendship Treaties from Mi’kmaq Knowledge-Holders, as well as the history of the Wabanaki nations and Indigenous Peoples.

Wela'lioq / Woliwon / Thank you,

Paul J. Mazerolle
President and Vice-Chancellor