Aboriginal Initiatives is an on-campus resource for First Nations, Métis and Inuit students (FNMI), status and non-status. We strive to be a home away from home, a hub of activity and a key resource for Sheridan’s FNMI students. It’s a place to study, hang out with other students, talk with an Elder, or participate in one of our programs and services.
We are open from 9am – 4pm, Monday to Friday and are located on the Trafalgar Campus in B127, just look for the Thunderbird above our door!
If you have been walking around B-Wing you might have noticed us, or at least smelt us. If you’ve smelt something like fragrant smoke near the Bookstore, that’s us! It’s called smudging and we do it in our office every day we are open. It’s not harmful at all. We burn White Sage, it is one of our four sacred medicines. Sometimes we burn two of the other sacred medicines: Sweet-Grass and Cedar.
Here’s a video Eye-On-Sheridan did that explains it better:
But smudging isn’t all we do!
We were very lucky to have Cree Elder Bertha Skye, who was available for beading or just to talk, every Thursday during the previous school year. Bertha continues to be a wonderful resource to the Sheridan community as she is also available to speak to classes on a wide range of topics.
Aboriginal Initiatives strives to create a welcoming and inclusive community that provides a variety of programs and services throughout the school year for all students, staff and faculty.
Last year we put on some pretty great events, including Universal Drum Circle an event we did in connection with Student Union and our visiting Knowledge Keeper Fred Roland from the Cowichan Nation! For this event we blended Aboriginal and African drumming and dancing to create our own unique partnership.
It was an amazing night that was greatly enjoyed by everyone! We hope to do even more in this coming school year so keep an eye out for our events!
In addition to creating community events Aboriginal Initiatives also hosts seasonal celebrations and monthly birthday parties for our FNMI students who are away from home.
But what else do we do for our FNMI students?
Well, we also provide Advisement and Peer Mentoring to ensure that your time at Sheridan is as successful as possible!
Our onsite Student Success Advisor, Paula Laing, can help work with you and the various Sheridan departments and services to help you navigate the system. Your Peer Mentor, Meagan Byrne, is here to be a fellow student you can talk to and who can help you learn the ins and outs of student life at Sheridan.
Come by and speak with us, even if you’re not sure what you need!