What is your connection to Migizii Agamik?
I was a grad student in the Faculty of Architecture at the U of M when I was hired by Prairie Architects to join the design team for the new building. This was so exciting because I spent a lot of time in the former Aboriginal Student Centre as a student and working as a student advisor. Migizii Agamik will always be special to me because it was the first project I ever worked on. It had such a positive impact on me as a designer. I now have my own design business that focuses on community design projects.
What does Migizii Agamik mean to you?
I remember wanting the new space to feel like a home away from home. That concept kept coming up over and over among the design team. There are many students that have to leave their home communities and families to complete their education. When I worked as a student advisor, one of the reasons many students didn't complete their degree was feeling disconnected and unwelcome. We also really wanted Migizii Agamik to be welcoming to all nations.
Share a memory that you have of Migizii Agamik.
We worked closely with staff, students, and Elders to make sure it was a community led and integrated design process. There was a lot of food and so much laughter. To see all these ideas start from sketches, to numerous models, to design plans, and then to the final built form was incredible to me as the only design student on the team. I am very grateful for that opportunity.