The Indigenous Learning Series
Pîkiskwêtân is a Cree word that means “let’s talk.” It reflects the vision behind the Indigenous Directions Learning Series as a safe space to foster earnest discussion and engage participants in reflecting on and sharing their experiences living and working alongside Indigenous peoples.
Pîkiskwêtân, the Indigenous Directions Learning Series, is a continuous series of decolonizing and anti-racist Indigenous awareness training and professional development workshops. It is intended for members of the Concordia community who wish to build cultural competence and gain the necessary skills and knowledge to work effectively with members of the Indigenous community and provide culturally safe services and programs to Indigenous students.
The goal of these workshops is to address a need to provide better awareness and understanding of the diverse cultures and socio-political realities of Indigenous peoples in a safe space and in a manner that accurately and truthfully conveys the experiences, perspectives and cultural diversity of the Indigenous Peoples in Canada.
The series takes a scaffolded learning approach that slowly introduces topics and concepts. It will help learners progressively develop critical thinking on Indigenous matters over a period of time. Learners will be provided with opportunities to learn about First Nations, Inuit and Métis and gain a better understanding of the meaning and the implications of reconciliation, decolonization and indigenization.
Companion Resource Guides
The library created the Companion Resource Guides for the Pîkiskwêtân series. The guides aim to highlight and enhance workshop content by offering opportunities for further learning and thinking via relevant books, reports, articles, web sites, podcasts and videos or films. The guides were prepared by Chloe Belair Morin and Sarah Monnier, library team members hired as part of the Indigenous Student Librarian program.
Virtual workshops offered Fall/Winter 2022-2023
Friday, October 14, 2022 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
This workshop seeks to present progress to date on the recommended actions and communicate priorities and goals for the upcoming year. Offered on a yearly basis, it allows participants to get information on the indigenization and decolonization efforts at Concordia. Participants will be invited to ask questions, provide feedback and share ideas with members of Concordia’s senior administration and the Indigenous Directions Indigenous Council. The ultimate goal of the workshop is to highlight the Indigenous Directions Action Plan and the work of the Indigenous Directions Leadership Council and to reaffirm Concordia’s commitment to decolonization.
Facilitators: Manon Tremblay and Allan Vicaire
Friday, November 4, 2022 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
This workshop is designed to help participants examine their personal values and biases and learn to interact respectfully and effectively with Indigenous peoples. The four components of cultural competence will be explored:
- Awareness of one’s own cultural worldview
- Attitude towards Indigenous peoples
- Knowledge of Indigenous peoples’ cultural practices and worldviews
- Cross-cultural skills
Facilitator: Carole Brazeau and Allan Vicaire
Friday, November 18, 2022 from 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.
This workshop is designed to provide participants with a glimpse into the experiences of First Nations, Métis and Inuit students in post-secondary education.
- tokenism and racial prejudice in the classroom;
- community expectations;
- the importance of culturally safe spaces on campus; and
- barriers to academic success.
The workshop will also seek to address myths and stereotypes tied to Indigenous education with a particular emphasis on the funding opportunities available to Indigenous students. A panel of students will share their personal stories.
Facilitator: Katsistohkwí:io Jacco
Friday, December 2, 2022 from 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.
This workshop is designed to bring awareness to current and future researchers of the impact of research on Indigenous communities, collectives and organizations. Discussion topics include: access to communities; data management; Indigenous perspectives on and experiences with research; OCAP principles; intellectual property rights; and Indigenous research ethics and protocols. Participants will be invited to reflect on respectful and mutually beneficial ways to conduct research. They will also explore ways to facilitate Indigenous participation in research, building Indigenous research capacity and adequately preparing graduate students before they undertake research on Indigenous people and/or in their communities.
Facilitator: Manon Tremblay
Friday, January 27, 2023 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
This workshop is designed to provide participants with the necessary tools and skills to successfully engage with Indigenous communities, collectives and organizations. Topics include: Indigenous protocols, the role of Elders, consultation versus engagement, building long term trust relationships and leveraging the right expertise.
Facilitators: Geneviève Sioui, Allan Vicaire and Amanda Shawayahamish
Friday, February 10, 2023 from 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.
The Indigenous Food Sovereignty webinar will be facilitated by Katsistohkwí:io Jacco and will highlight the reclamation and regeneration of Indigenous food systems as a major aspect of Indigenous resurgence. Key themes that will be explored are:
•The history of forced displacement between Indigenous peoples and their food systems
•Indigenous food systems and their implications on Indigenous wholistic health and wellness outcomes
•Indigenous Food Sovereignty theory
•Spotlighting current Indigenous Food Sovereignty initiatives and projects led by Indigenous peoples across Turtle Island
Facilitator: Katsistohkwí:io Jacco
Friday, February 24, 2023 from 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.
This workshop introduces participants to the diverse cultures, socio-political structures, traditions and realities of First Nations peoples with an emphasis on the First Nations whose ancestral lands are located in Eastern Canada. It discusses First Nations history prior to the 20th century and examines how the treatment of Indigenous peoples in the last 200 years have contributed to issues that First Nations people still face today. It also presents success stories and highlights organizations and projects that bring positive change.
Friday, March 24, 2023 from 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.
This workshop helps participants gain a better perspective of the many additional hats that Indigenous faculty and staff are expected to wear by their institutions and the toll that the additional workload can take on their health and well-being. The workshop will be dedicated to issues that primarily affect Indigenous faculty but that are also experienced by Indigenous staff.
Discussions will focus on:
- underrepresentation and university hiring practices;
- balancing community expectations vs. institutional commitments;
- tokenism, pigeonholing and the suppression of cultural values and ethics;
- additional duties without compensation;
- mentorship and supervision of Indigenous students;
- institutional support and promotion concerns; and
- obstacles to research funding.
Facilitator: Allan Vicaire and Katsistohkwí:io Jacco
Friday, April 14, 2023 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
This workshop seeks to help participants gain a better understanding of the contemporary health issues of Indigenous people and how they can present obstacles to academic success. It presents Indigenous perspectives on wholistic health including principles associated to the Medicine Wheel and miyo-pimâtisiwin.
- social determinants of health;
- access to health care;
- the tyranny of distance;
- intergenerational trauma and its impact on mental health; and
- anti-Indigenous racism in the health systems.