Indigenous Initiatives: Guidance, Resources, and Supports

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Memorandum

To:                Students, Faculty and Staff

From:           Jean Becker, Senior Director, Indigenous Initiatives

Today marks exactly four months that I have been a part of the University of Waterloo community as the Senior Director, Indigenous Initiatives. On this occasion, I want to take this opportunity to update you on my work, and provide resources and ways to connect with the Indigenous Initiatives Office.

Four Months of Indigenous InitiativesJean Becker, Senior Director, Indigenous Initiatives

As the Senior Director, Indigenous Initiatives, I work on- and off-campus to not only advance the goals of the Truth and on Calls to Action, but also to create a long-term vision for the University that is grounded in decolonization.

Over the last four months I have openly and proactively engaged with diverse campus community members, including students, staff, Faculties, groups, organizations, departments and the federated and affiliated institutions. I have heard and seen the incredible work being done to advance our Indigenization Strategy. Thanks to each of you who generously shared your experiences, successes, challenges, and hopes for the future.

Looking Forward

The Indigenous Initiatives Office is a central hub for First Nations, Inuit, and Métis researchers, faculty and staff, along with allies within the Waterloo campus community. The strategic objectives of the Indigenous Initiatives Office highlight, strengthen, and amplify research, collaborations, partnerships and engagement opportunities on our campus. Additionally, the Indigenous Initiatives Office provides guidance, support and resources to ensure we are creating a shared vision towards the very necessary goal of reconciliation.

Connecting

To ensure we are advancing this collective vision for Waterloo we must work together. I would like to hear from you; hear and see more of the Indigenous and ally work being done on our campus; be a resource to build and strengthen strategies to recruit more Indigenous faculty, researchers, staff, and future students; support embedding Indigenous ways of knowing into curriculum; and, collaborate and support the mobilization of existing or future strategic Indigenous plans and projects.

Please connect through the Indigenous Initiatives group chat we have established in LEARN (self-register under Indigenous Initiatives), visit our website, or contact me by email.

I have met many of you already, and I look forward to continuing our conversations, but for those I have not yet met, I look forward to meeting you – virtually, for now, and in person in the future.

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