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UCARE meeting scheduled for Sept. 21

The next public meeting of the University Council on Anti-Racism and Equity (UCARE) will be held Monday, Sept. 21 starting at 4:30 pm.

The meeting is being hosted online.

Anyone interested in attending is requested to email Jill Christie to be added to the meeting.

UCARE was established to coordinate, monitor, and report on the progress of university-wide initiatives to address racism and promote equity, diversity, and inclusion. The Council helps to shape the vision and strategy of the university and serves as a critical voice for diversity and inclusion at Queen’s.

Meeting Agenda:

  1. Welcome and Adoption of the Agenda
  2. Approval of the Minutes of Aug. 17, 2020
  3. Co-Chairs Remarks
  4. Remarks by Principal Patrick Deane
  5. UCARE Sub-Council Update
  6. Director, Yellow House Introduction

 

Declaration of commitment to address systemic racism

Queen's University senior leadership and deans, led by Principal and Vice-Chancellor Patrick Deane, pledge immediate actions to confront discrimination.

A message from Principal and Vice-Chancellor Patrick Deane:

Dear Queen's community,

Just over one year ago, I began my tenure as principal of Queen’s University. When I arrived, I told the community that I wished to engage in a conversation about our aspirations for the institution’s future. I wanted to have a frank dialogue with our students, staff and faculty about the current state of the university, our challenges and our opportunities. It has been a revealing year, in part because we have been tested by numerous crises. The obvious crisis is the current health pandemic but the more insidious and potentially destructive crisis involves an issue that is neither new nor unexpected: racism and other forms of oppression which persist despite the efforts of many individuals over the years, and which continue to deeply affect our institution, as they do the systems and formations of our society at large. Recent events have brought this crisis to the forefront. There has been a rallying cry for change on our campus and demands on leaders, including myself, to take real action to address the practices and structures at Queen’s that feed this systemic problem. 

The recent calls for administrative leadership on anti-racism, from staff, faculty, and especially students, have been heard clearly and action will be taken. To this end, and with guidance from our Associate Vice Principals, Stephanie Simpson and Janice Hill, I have prepared a declaration, on behalf of the university’s administration, to address racism, systemic as well as individual. All members of the senior leadership have endorsed the declaration as a signal of their commitment to take action to root out the causes of racism within the university and to ensure that those who ​experience racism and related forms of injustice are treated equitably and are able to participate in the life of the university, fully and authentically.


Queen’s University Administration’s
Declaration of Commitment to Address Systemic Racism

Persistent racism, systemic as well as individual, has brought our society to a crisis point. Queen’s University is not immune to this pervasive and destructive force which, at its most pernicious, silently influences the shape and functioning of our culture and institutions, entrenching longstanding abuses of power that have diminished the humanity of Black, Indigenous and racialized people. Right now, it is imperative that all parts of the Queen’s community understand, confront, and do what is necessary to alter the deeply entrenched behaviours and structures that perpetuate such inequities. Frank and difficult conversations will be required, not for the purpose of laying blame, but rather to help us reflect on and then undertake the hard work of change. Each of us has a role to play in addressing racism. We must ​resist forever the kind of binary thinking in which one group’s right to opportunity and equitable treatment is perceived to be dependent on the disadvantaging of another. Such an attitude will only guarantee a continuing decline in ​our ability to attract and retain the best and brightest minds among diverse communities, and, eventually, in our ability to make a meaningful contribution to the improvement of humanity and our world. As leaders of Queen’s University, we commit ourselves to addressing systemic racism through the critical examination of our own roles in its perpetuation and in the practices and policies that may support persistent inequities. To this end, we pledge to undertake the following:

  • Actively support the efforts of students, staff, faculty, and alumni who are engaged in anti-racism and anti-oppression work on campus, including the work of the Aboriginal Council and the University Council on Anti-Racism and Equity (UCARE);
     
  • Continue to work to address systemic racism in the educational and classroom practices of the institution and in particular, within our primary activities of teaching and research;
     
  • Continue to close staff and faculty gaps in representation for women, people with disabilities, Indigenous peoples and Black and racialized people at all levels of the institution;
     
  • Identify barriers within university procedures to the recruitment and admission of racialized students, particularly Black and Indigenous students, and enhance efforts and initiatives to diversify the student population;
     
  • Identify and eliminate gaps in support and resources for 2SLGBTQ+ students, staff and faculty;
     
  • Increase financial support and promote and centralized academic supports for under-represented students;
     
  • Review and strengthen our institutional policies and procedures for addressing acts of racist violence and hatred, with an emphasis on trauma-informed care for those victimized;
     
  • Provide additional anti-racism training and education for all staff and faculty;
     
  • Increase mental health supports for students, staff, and faculty affected by racism on campus;
     
  • Introduce campus climate metrics to measure campus culture, progress, and impact of anti-racism initiatives;
     
  • Incorporate EDII as a major focus of the university’s vision for the future to be integrated into every leader’s annual goals and planned initiatives.

The items noted are for immediate action and some are already underway. The list is not exhaustive; rather it is an indication of our ​intention to ​act boldly and swiftly to continue to enact the changes that can be made in the short term. The work will continue to evolve and the broader project of creating an anti-racism culture at Queen's will take time. There is much to do and there are many issues to be addressed. We will work tirelessly to unite our community, improving the experience of every member so that all may enjoy the benefits of our institution equally. 

Signed:

Patrick Deane, Principal & Vice-Chancellor
Stephanie Simpson, Associate Vice-Principal (Human Rights, Equity & Inclusion)
Kanonhsyonne (Janice Hill), Associate Vice-Principal (Indigenous Initiatives & Reconciliation)   
Mark Green, Provost & Vice-Principal (Academic)
Karen Bertrand, Vice-Principal (Advancement)
Michael Fraser, Vice-Principal (University Relations)
Donna Janiec, Vice-Principal (Finance & Administration)
Lon Knox, University Secretary & Corporate Counsel
Lisa Newton, University Counsel
Teri Shearer, Deputy Provost (Academic Operations & Inclusion)
Kim Woodhouse, Vice-Principal (Research)
Brenda Brouwer, Interim Dean, Smith School of Business
Barbara Crow, Dean, Faculty of Arts & Science
Kevin Deluzio, Dean, Faculty of Engineering & Applied Science
Sandra den Otter, Vice-Provost (International)
Hugh Horton, Vice-Provost and Executive Director, Bader International Study Centre
Rebecca Luce-Kapler, Dean, Faculty of Education
Jane Philpott, Dean, Faculty of Health Sciences
John Pierce, Vice-Provost (Teaching & Learning)
Fahim Quadir, Vice-Provost and Dean, School of Graduate Studies
Ann Tierney, Vice-Provost (Student Affairs and Dean of Students)
Michael Vandenburg, Interim Vice-Provost and University Librarian
Mark Walters, Dean, Faculty of Law

This message is also available on the Principal and Vice-Chancellor's website.

Law school consults Queen's community about building's name

Dean’s advisory committee open for feedback about Sir John A. Macdonald Hall.

Photograph of Sir John A. Macdonald Hall
After the consultation process, the Dean of Law will make a recommendation to the Principal on the question of the building name.

Last month, the Faculty of Law announced its commitment to formally review the name of its building, Sir John A. Macdonald Hall, given concerns about the complicated legacy of Canada’s first Prime Minister, particularly as it pertains to Indigenous peoples. An advisory committee has now been struck and for the next eight weeks it will lead wide consultations to understand whether the law school building should continue to be named after Macdonald at a time when the country seeks to advance Truth and Reconciliation.

Sir John A. Macdonald Hall has been home to the faculty since the building opened in 1960.

“Macdonald’s legacy is complex. He is known as our first Prime Minister and for being instrumental in the formation of Canada, but the public has become increasingly aware of—and concerned with—how his policies negatively impacted Indigenous peoples,” says Mark Walters, Dean of the Faculty of Law. “It is now time to ask hard questions about the relationship between the building name and the identity, values, and aspirations of the community that learns and works within the building.”

The advisory committee—comprised of students, faculty, staff, and alumni —will welcome and consider all views presented by members of the community and use them to inform the development of recommendations that may include a variety of options for the Board of Trustees to consider when making its ultimate decision.

Interested groups or individuals are welcome to make written submissions via an online survey or directly to law.consultation@queensu.ca until September 18, 2020.  Opportunities for community members to make oral submissions will be announced soon.

“Our consultation aims to hear from members of our law school, university, alumni, and wider community to gain a full and diverse range of perspectives on Macdonald’s legacy,” says Jeff Fung (Law’08), advisory committee co-chair and Associate General Counsel at Nissan Canada Inc. “We look forward to reviewing feedback and fairly considering all views as we work toward recommendations.”

Students, faculty, and staff of the Faculty of Law will also have an opportunity to express their views on this issue, either directly or through their representatives, in a special meeting of the school’s Faculty Board.

After considering the opinions and recommendations expressed during the consultation process, the Dean of Law will make a recommendation to the Principal on the question of the building name. The Principal will then consider this recommendation in his proposal to the Board of Trustees.  Responsibility for naming of buildings lies with the Board. The Board will consider the Principal’s proposal before making the final decision regarding the name. Should the Board choose to remove Macdonald’s name from the building, a separate process would need to be initiated before it could be renamed.

Since 2016, the law school has been engaged with implementing the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, including hiring an Indigenous Recruitment and Support Officer and the creation of two bursaries to support Indigenous students at the law school. Academically, it has integrated a number of Aboriginal and Indigenous law courses in its curriculum, and recently announced the creation of the Chief Don Maracle Reconciliation/Indigenous Knowledge Initiative. The school has welcomed a wide range of Indigenous lecturers and visitors to the faculty, with 11 scholars and leaders visiting the school in the 2019-20 school year alone. In 2018, it saw the creation and installation of a major piece of public art in its atrium themed on the Indigenous legal tradition of wampum belts, words that are lasting, by Mohawk artist Hannah Claus. 

The Queen’s Faculty of Law has been a leader in Canadian legal education since its foundation in 1957, and over 8,000 alumni have graduated its programs.

Learn more on the law school's consultation website.

Supporting Indigenous and LGBTQ2S+ communities

Queen’s is increasing security at Four Directions Indigenous Student Centre after recent vandalism.

Photograph of the Four Directions Indigenous Student Centre
Queen’s has installed security cameras, floodlights, and additional measures to keep the centre safe and make the property more secure.

The Four Directions Indigenous Student Centre is an important hub on campus for Indigenous students looking for a home away from home. It offers cultural counselling, academic advising services, and programming that helps students connect with one another and build a strong community.

Recently, Four Directions has been targeted in troubling racist and homophobic incidents of vandalism. In late June, Indigenous nations and Pride flags hanging from the front of the centre were torn; last weekend, damage was discovered to the tipi at the back of the building.

In response, Queen’s has installed security cameras, floodlights, and additional measures to keep the centre safe and make the property more secure. The flags, which have been rehung in the windows, will also be permanently installed outdoors.

“Any attempt to damage the Indigenous student centre is a direct attack on Queen’s itself and on our values of acceptance and respect for all. These kinds of actions only strengthen our resolve to support and celebrate Indigenous and LGBTQ2S+ identities,” says Rahswahérha Mark Green, Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic). “My office has been working closely with the Principal’s Office and Student Affairs to ensure the staff of the Four Directions Student Centre know they are fully supported by the university and that new measures are now in place to protect the centre and the work it does to support Indigenous students on campus.”

The Kingston Police Service is investigating both incidents.

“I am deeply hurt and dismayed that the Four Directions Indigenous Student Centre has been vandalized for a second time in a few short weeks. It has been a very trying year for Indigenous and LGBTQ2S+ members of the Queen’s community, and we want you to know that we stand with you,” says Kanonhysonne (Janice Hill), Associate Vice-Principal (Indigenous Initiatives and Reconciliation).

Kandice Baptiste, Director of Four Directions, has released a statement on the centre’s Facebook page. She also made a statement after the incident in June, as did Kanonhysonne, who condemned the vandalism and expressed her commitment to create change at Queen’s. Principal Patrick Deane and Provost Green released statements as well.

Reducing barriers to medical education

The Queen’s School of Medicine is increasing efforts to recruit Black and Indigenous students.

Photo of the Queen's School of Medicine building
This change to the QuARMS pathway is part of the work that the Faculty of Health Sciences is doing to make health professions education more accessible to historically underrepresented groups.

Queen’s University is working to reduce systemic barriers to medical education by allocating 10 of its 100 seats in each class of its MD program to Black and Indigenous students, starting with the 2020-2021 undergraduate application cycle. These 10 seats will be made available through the Queen’s University Accelerated Route to Medical School (QuARMS) pathway, which was launched in 2012.

“Queen’s recognizes that Indigenous peoples and Black Canadians have been historically underrepresented in the medical profession, and that standard medical admissions practices have imposed barriers to these groups. With this new approach to the QuARMS pathway, we are hoping to reach individuals who may not have considered Queen’s or the medical profession otherwise,” says Jane Philpott, Dean, Queen’s Faculty of Health Sciences. “Our faculty aims to become a leader in Canada in cultural safety, anti-racism, anti-colonialism, and anti-oppression in health professions education. There is a large body of work to be done and this is one important step toward making a Queen’s health professions education more accessible.”

The only pathway of its kind in Canada, QuARMS recruits 10 students from across Canada each year to attend the Queen’s School of Medicine on an accelerated track. These students spend two years as undergraduates at Queen’s. Then, rather than take qualifying examinations such as the MCAT, which are part of the standard admissions process, they enter the four-year MD program in the Queen’s School of Medicine, provided they meet the pre-determined entrance criteria for QuARMS students.

Previously, QuARMS had been open to all graduating high-school students. Now these seats will be reserved for Indigenous peoples and Black Canadians. These seats are in addition to the four seats in the MD program that are designated, through the standard admissions process, for Indigenous students each year.

“When QuARMS was launched, it was designed both to attract exceptional students to Queen’s and as a pathway for students who face financial, systemic or social barriers to entering medicine through the traditional medical school application process. This change to the pathway is very much in keeping with its original vision of bringing students from underrepresented groups to Queen’s,” says Hugh MacDonald, Assistant Dean of Undergraduate Admissions, Queen’s School of Medicine. “In order to further reduce barriers, we are also actively exploring options to provide financial support to QuARMS students.”

The QuARMS pathway enables students to use their two years as undergraduates to focus on taking a broad range of courses before they transition into medical school in their third year at Queen’s.

“QuARMS students often become a tight-knit group and there are already mentorship structures in place to facilitate a smooth transition. We believe that the pathway is well-equipped to provide the community and support that students from underrepresented groups might look for in medical school,” says Dr. MacDonald.

The current cohort of medical students helped to inform discussions that led to this decision through a report written by the Aesculapian Society, the student government for the School of Medicine.

“Our students deserve credit for raising issues regarding diversity and inclusion with the administration and advocating for change,” says Dr. MacDonald. “Our admissions committee is listening to our students and will continue to identify changes to the standard admissions process that will reduce barriers.”

This decision is one part of the ongoing work the Faculty of Health Sciences (FHS) has underway to reduce barriers to education. Dean Philpott has recently announced that she is forming the Dean’s Action Table on Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion. This table will be comprised of students, staff, and faculty from all three schools in FHS: the School of Medicine, the School of Nursing, and the School of Rehabilitation Therapy. The table will develop and implement a comprehensive suite of reforms across FHS in areas such as recruitment, mentorship and support, and curriculum.

To learn more, see the QuARMS website.

 

Smith equity, diversity, inclusion, and indigeneity task force holds first meeting

Queen’s business school commits to series of actions to tackle discrimination during inaugural meeting.

Smith School of Business
The task force is set to address issues such as racism, representation, and belonging at the business school.

With the Smith School of Business’ newly-formed Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Indigeneity (EDII) Task Force in place, members have begun the work to advance the business school’s efforts to address systemic barriers to inclusion, and further promote equity and diversity. The group met for its inaugural meeting on July 10, 2020.

“The EDII Task Force serves as a catalyst to drive substantive change; it is about action, not recommendations,” says Brenda Brouwer, Dean of the Smith School of Business and EDII Task Force co-chair. “We hold ourselves accountable for ensuring we foster a culture of inclusion, dignity, and respect.”

Task force members will form five working groups to further focus on target areas of need. The groups will focus on advancing EDII in physical and virtual spaces; teaching and learning; policy, process and practice reform and; advancement and alumni engagement. The fifth working group will focus on rebuilding trust through dialogue and education, including the development of guidelines and strategies for consultative and collaborative student, staff, faculty, and alumni engagement on EDII.

“Over the course of our first meeting, our task force has laid the foundation for the important work that lies ahead, and we are eager to address issues such as racism, representation, and belonging head on,” says Stephanie Simpson, Associate Vice-Principal (Human Rights, Equity, and Inclusivity). “The stories of discrimination and exclusion shared by our students this week on social media have highlighted the need for us to strengthen our resolve to make our campus safe and welcoming for all.”

Coming out of the meeting, the task force committed to re-affirm the observations and recommendations defined in the PICRDI report, and to strengthening the EDII-advancing measures already in place. 

Since 2017, Smith Business has worked to improve its hiring processes to be more inclusive. All hiring panel members receive mandatory staff hiring equity training, and an employment equity representative sits on each committee. EDII programs for students have been implemented, including the embedding of cultural intelligence training into first- and second- year business curriculums. The school created a dedicated function for Indigenous student recruitment and support in 2017, and a Diversity and Inclusivity Coordinator was created within the Commerce program in 2019.

The task force is meeting weekly. The working groups formed from the task force will work in parallel, implementing initiatives and involving a broader group of faculty, staff, students and alumni. Members will also consult with equity-seeking students and groups, and alumni to inform these steps.

Learn more about the EDII Task Force and associated efforts at the Smith School of Business.

Queen's launches Indigenous Initiatives website

New site brings together campus-wide information and resources on Queen's University Indigenous research, initiatives, cultural services, and more.

Indigenous graduates

Campus community members can now learn about and engage with Queen’s University’s Indigenous research, initiatives, cultural services, and more on the newly-launched Office of Indigenous Initiatives website.

“It is important for reconciliation that Indigenous voices be incorporated into the work—the projects, research, and initiatives – that take place here at Queen’s,” says Kanonhsyonne (Janice Hill), Associate Vice-Principal (Indigenous Initiatives and Reconciliation). “My hope is that we continue to approach this work with Ka’nikonhrí:yo (a good mind) and I believe that our new website serves as a great starting point to help individuals to better understand Indigenous values, and how our values relate to relationship building, research, methodologies, pedagogies, and knowledge.”

The site’s design is uniquely arranged to guide users through key themes and initiatives, including Truth and Reconciliation, Indigenous Ways of Knowing, and Decolonizing and Indigenizing. It also showcases Indigenous ‘faces, spaces, and places’ at Queen’s, making it easier for Queen’s community members to connect with campus Elders, as well as Indigenous services for students and employees. Key pages on the site are also set to be translated into both the Kanyen’ke:ha (Mohawk) and Anishinaabemowin (Ojibway) languages, as Queen’s University is situated on the land of the Haudenosaunee and Anishinaabe.

The launch of the website also meets recommendation #11 of the university’s Yakwanastahentéha Aankenjigemi Extending the Rafters: Truth and Reconciliation Commission Task Force Final Report. The report – a set of 25 recommendations created to advance sustained institutional change – guides the university as it continues work to strengthen relationships with Indigenous communities; cultivate deeper understanding of Indigenous histories, knowledge systems, and experiences; and nurture a campus that values and reflects Indigenous perspectives.

“I encourage anyone considering Queen’s University as a place of employment or a place of higher education, and those who are part of the community already, to visit our new website,” says Hill. “It provides a wealth of information for anyone looking to engage with our Indigenous research, initiatives, and cultural services, and I know it will lead us all to a better understanding of our shared path ahead.”

Visit the new Office of Indigenous Initiatives website.

Principal’s statement on racist incident

Principal Patrick Deane responds to vandalism at Four Directions Student Centre.

I have just been made aware that a number of flags hanging outside the Four Directions Indigenous Student Centre have been vandalized. Representing the Indigenous communities from which many Queen’s students come, and including the rainbow flag that celebrates LGBTQ+ members of our university family, these flags were hung last year in the wake of, and in a statement against, racism and homophobia in the Chown Hall residence. Disgusting in itself, this new expression of racism and bigotry is all the more reprehensible for occurring in the context of that broader repudiation of racism and hatred that has gripped our society since the death of George Floyd in the United States. As encouraging as that mobilization of resistance to hatred has been, this act is dispiriting, reminding us all that racism is alive and amongst us and must be fought with all our energy and resolve.

Queen’s University will do everything within its power to identify the individuals responsible, and will redouble its efforts to effect broad and systemic change within our community.

Patrick Deane
Principal and Vice-Chancellor

Recommended reads from Indigenous Initiatives staff

Office of Indigenous Initiatives staff highlight their favourite books by Indigenous authors.

Stack of books (Photo by Kimberly Farmer, via Unsplash)

As National Indigenous History Month came to a close last week, staff in Queen’s Office of Indigenous Initiatives collected a list of important book suggestions for the campus community to continue its learning into the summer.

“It’s important for Canadians to read books by Indigenous authors as this provides an opportunity for learning and can help to foster a stronger understanding of the different perspectives that Indigenous Peoples may hold,” says Kanonhsyonne (Janice Hill), Associate Vice-Principal (Indigenous Initiatives and Reconciliation). “My hope is that these books will inspire the Queen’s community to approach relationship building, reconciliation, and conciliation with Indigenous Peoples in a good way.”

The range of literature spans topics of history and politics, philosophy, gender, poetry, language and education, and a book for children.

Recommended reading list:


From Kanonhsyonne (Janice Hill):

Medicine Walk by Richard Wagamese
A very moving, thoughtful and thought-provoking story about family, identity, and connections with self, others, and Creation.

In Divided Unity: Haudenosaunee Reclamation at Grand River by Theresa McCarthy
Important in understanding the deep-rooted ideas that informed the Grand River Community and their decision to reclaim contested lands in 2006. Speaks to Haudenosaunee traditional cultural representations and the importance of the women.

Thinking in Indian: A John Mohawk Reader by Jose Barreir
John Mohawk was a highly respected Haudenosaunee philosopher, thinker, activist, and scholar, as well as an elder of the Seneca Nation. He was a deeply-rooted Haudenosaunee traditionalist whose oratory and thinking continues to inform Haudenosaunee activism.

From Wendy Phillips, Elder in Residence:

Think Indian by Basil Johnston
A collection of essays from an Indigenous linguist and first language speaker that covers a range of topics, from language and storytelling, to culture and education.

From Haley Cochrane, Project and Communications Coordinator:

21 Things you May Not Know About the Indian Act by Bob Joseph
An eye-opening read for those interested in learning more about the Indian Act and the discrimination Indigenous Peoples have faced and continue to face as a result of unjust systemic policies and practices in Canada.

From Amy Brant, Training Facilitator:

Indigenous Writes by Chelsea Vowel
Chelsea touches on many issues about Indigenous people in Canada today, from terminology and law, to culture and identity. A good read for anyone wanting to delve into issues from an Indigenous perspective and Chelsea really keeps you engaged throughout the book, writing as if she is sitting and talking with you.

From Marshall Hill, Research Assistant:

Indian Land by Lesley Belleau
A collection of poems written from the perspective of an Anishinaabe woman with a fierce love for her people, her family, and the land.

You Are Enough: Love Poems for the End of the World by Smokii Sumac
Winner of the 2019 Indigenous Voices Award for Published Poetry in English, this collection is a complex yet forceful meditation on grief and love, consent and gender, through the life of a Ktunaxa Two-Spirit person.

From Sara Mouland, Office Assistant:

The Mishomis Book by Edward Benton-Banai
A good read with stories, myths, and traditions for children.

Queen’s celebrates Indigenous graduates

University leadership and staff share message of congratulations on National Indigenous Peoples Day, as Anishinaabek and Haudenosaunee flags are raised on campus.

Anishinaabe and Haudenosaunee flags flying in front of Richardson Hall
Anishinaabek and Haudenosaunee flags flying in front of Richardson Hall.

With this year’s traditional convocation ceremonies postponed due to COVID-19, Queen’s Office of Indigenous Initiatives, the Four Directions Indigenous Student Centre, and campus-wide Indigenous support staff put together a special video message to congratulate Indigenous graduates on their important milestone.

“I’m so very honoured to be able to offer you my most sincere congratulations on the competition of your degree,” says Kanonhsyonne (Janice Hill), Associate Vice-Principal (Indigenous Initiatives and Reconciliation). “It’s been a very trying year but you all persevered and you succeeded, and you should be very proud of yourselves for doing so. You are the future that our ancestors dreamed of.”

Campus-wide Indigenous support staff expressed positive wishes and salutations to 123 self-identified Indigenous graduates who have completed degrees across 24 disciplines, including Business, Arts and Science, Engineering, Education, Health Sciences, and Law.

“We were so happy to be able to support you during your time here at Queen’s,” says Kandice Baptiste, Director of Queen’s Four Directions Indigenous Student Centre. “My biggest and most heartfelt congratulations to all of you for all of your accomplishments. Yoya:nare (Good job)!”

View the video message on the Queen’s University YouTube channel. Visit the Queen’s University Registrar website for more on how degree conferrals and graduation were celebrated this year. This year’s graduates will be updated as details on planning for in-person recognition events are developed.

Flags raised to honour National Indigenous Peoples Day

The Anishinaabek and Haudenosaunee flags were raised in front of Richardson Hall in recognition of National Indigenous Peoples Day and Queen’s University’s Indigenous community members, as well as in honour of the traditional lands on which the institution sits.

“I could not be more happy that the flags of indigenous peoples will now fly permanently over the Queen’s campus,” says Patrick Deane, Queen’s Principal and Vice-Chancellor. In an academic year that had barely begun when racism and homophobia cast a shadow over Chown Hall, and which is ending as people around the globe are demanding an end to continuing racial hatred and inhumanity, we need a great deal more than symbolism. But nevertheless we communicate with and inspire each other through symbols, so to celebrate National indigenous People’s Day in this way strengthens our resolve and affirms us in our commitment to reconciliation.

The flags adorn recently-installed poles set to fly the two Indigenous flags continuously.

“I am happy to witness the raising of the Haudenosaunee and Anishinaabek flags at Richardson Hall, especially in respect of Indigenous Peoples History Month and National Indigenous People's Day, says Kanonhsyonne (Janice Hill). “This marks acknowledgment and a positive response to the wishes of our students as well as contributing to visibility and honouring of Indigenous peoples in our community and country.

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