WHAT IS NATIVE STUDIES?
Native Studies focuses on critical examinations of the societal processes that have had, and continue to have an effect on the Indigenous peoples of Canada (First Nations, Métis, and Inuit) since the time of European colonization. It is an interdisciplinary field of study that explores a variety of established academic disciplines in the humanities and social sciences in order to produce new forms of knowledge, new ways of thinking, and creative approaches to teaching and conducting research.
TELL ME ABOUT THE DEPARTMENT
Although courses have been offered since 1972, the Department of Native studies was not formally established until 1974. As of now, the Department of Native Studies offers an undergraduate Bachelor of Arts degree (both, a 3 year and a 4 year Advanced Major), as well as a Master of Arts degree, and a recently established PhD program. (Click HERE to view a PDF file of a more thorough history of the development of the department) As a student, you can rest assured of the quality and diversity of education you will receive from our faculty members. Each faculty member specializes in a different field that ranges from the arts and literature, to business, to politics, to traditional knowledge. Our department strives to challenge existing institutional paradigms, as well as raise the bar of generally accepted research practices and teaching standards.
WHY TAKE NATIVE STUDIES AT U OF M?
The Native Studies program at the University of Manitoba is an international leader in the field that is committed to establishing outstanding scholarship relating to the historical and contemporary position of the Indigenous peoples of Canada. Our location is ideally situated; we are in the heart of North America, where the first treaties since the Confederation of Canada were signed 140 years ago, as well as where Louis Riel staged his Métis resistance during the Red River rebellion.
WHAT CAN I DO WITH A NATIVE STUDIES DEGREE?
Our programs enable students to think creatively, logically, and critically. Aside from learning about Indigenous history and gaining an understanding of unique worldviews, our students gain skills in research, qualitative interviewing and fieldwork, as well as in refining their writing ability. Our graduates have attained careers with Indigenous organizations (both, regional and national), the federal, provincial, and municipal governments of Canada, public health, law firms, law enforcement, politics, public relations, local community organizations, business, museums, social services agencies, research centres, private consulting, media, schools, non-profit organizations, among others.
Consider these job opportunities for a Native Studies graduate:
· Community Educator
Community Liaison Worker
Aboriginal Issues Coordinator
Economic Development Manager
WHAT TIES ARE THERE TO THE COMMUNITY?
The Department of Native Studies at U of M has very close ties with the communities it serves. A number of courses are offered off the main campus in Fort Garry, but still within the city of Winnipeg. Others, such as Aboriginal Healing Ways and Aboriginal Spirituality, are delivered in the reserve community of Hollow Water, for example. Other community based programs that are offered include the Summer School Program in Pangnirtung, Baffin Island. The department also sponsors a wide range of activities within the university, as well as with the outside community. These activities include a Colloquium series, academic conferences, an annual elders and traditional people’s gathering, as well as a newsletter that is published at the end of each academic semester.
Student field trip to Cross Lake to study hydro electric development in the north.
Students and instructors constructing teepee frame that will be used as the teaching lodge at a field school in Hollow Water, Manitoba.