Image Credit: Saskatchewan Polytechnic
Image Credit: Saskatchewan Polytechnic

Saskatchewan Polytechnic receives Indigenous Education Excellence award

Colleges and Institutes Canada Awards of Excellence Program recognizes and promotes excellence within colleges, institutes, cégeps, and polytechnics in Canada.

May 9, 2018 - Saskatchewan Polytechnic received bronze for the Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan) Indigenous Education Excellence Award. These awards recognize a college or institute that has a demonstrated commitment to Indigenous education through innovative approaches and dedicated structures, services and community partnerships.

Situated on Treaty 4 and Treaty 6 Territories and the Homeland of the Métis people, and with 19 per cent of learners identifying as Indigenous, Sask Polytech believes strongly in and adheres to our commitment to support Indigenous students and indigenize the institution. This commitment has included being a signatory of the CICan Indigenous Education Protocol, creating an indigenization declaration and using the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action as a guide to assist Sask Polytech on the path ahead.

“We are very honoured to be recognized as a leader in Indigenous education. Indigenous students find success at Sask Polytech. Our faculty and staff are wholly committed to our students’ success, and for them this honour is most appropriate,” says Dr. Larry Rosia, president and CEO. “Sask Polytech’s Indigenous Student Success Strategy builds on efforts that trace their beginnings to more than a decade ago. We are heartened by all that has been accomplished since we began implementation of those very first recommendations of the then SIAST Aboriginal Council.”

Guided by the principals of reconciliation, Sask Polytech continuously creates long-term positive change by putting students' needs first. Services offered to Indigenous students include: summer transition programs, access to Indigenous Students' centres and Elders, Indigenous student advisors and financial support through a number of scholarships and bursaries. Sask Polytech has also been celebrating Indigenous student success for over 25 years with annual Honour Ceremonies and other events. Each ceremony includes a dinner, an opportunity to hear student success stories and honour song performances.

“As a member of CICan, it is humbling to receive an Indigenous Education Excellence Award,” says Jason Seright, Indigenous Strategy director. “Indigenous students are an important and valued part of Sask Polytech’s community. I’d like to thank everyone who is making a difference in the lives of Sask Polytech’s Indigenous students.”

Saskatchewan Polytechnic serves 28,000 distinct students through applied learning opportunities at campuses in Moose Jaw, Prince Albert, Regina and Saskatoon, and through extensive distance education opportunities. Programs serve every economic and public service sector. As a polytechnic, the organization provides the depth of learning appropriate to employer and student need, including certificate, diploma and degree programs, and apprenticeship training. Saskatchewan Polytechnic engages in applied research, drawing on faculty expertise to support innovation by employers, and providing students the opportunity to develop critical thinking skills.