Indigenous student education
Indigenous peoples face significant barriers to postsecondary education. As a result, far fewer First Nations, Métis and Inuit in Canada have a university degree than non-Indigenous Canadians. Education is vital to the reconciliation process and universities are committed to helping Indigenous students achieve their potential through higher education. Universities help advance reconciliation by revitalizing Indigenous languages, ensuring Indigenous representation in governance and leadership structures, and bringing Indigenous knowledge and culture to campus. Still much more remains to be done. Universities Canada is working with partners in government to encourage more support for Indigenous students to access and succeed at higher education.
Universities Canada’s Advisory group on Indigenous higher education
By the numbers
80%prioritize reconciliation in strategic planning
80% of universities have or are developing a strategic plan for advancing reconciliation and to ensure the academic success of Indigenous students.
93%offer financial aid
More than 90% of universities offer financial aid dedicated specifically to Indigenous students.
85%partner with Indigenous communities
More than 80% of universities have a partnership with Indigenous communities and organizations to foster dialogue and reconciliation.
76%offer Indigenous-focused programs
Over three-quarters of universities offer programs that are specifically designed for Indigenous students or have an Indigenous focus.
83%engage with Elders on campus
More than 80% of universities work with Elders to provide cultural supports like visits and mentoring to Indigenous students.
69%of universities offer transition programs
These include outreach programs in Indigenous communities, academic support and mentorship for Indigenous students starting as early as the elementary school level.
Reconciliation may be our greatest social challenge but also our greatest opportunity. We must approach the task with ambition, pragmatism and humility.