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More international students coming to Canada, Windsor

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Chris Busch, centre, speaks during a panel discussion on the issue of international students at post secondary institutions at the University of Windsor, Thursday, January 23, 2020.


Dax Melmer / Windsor Star

The number of international students attending St. Clair College jumped from 500 to 6,900 students in three years.

“Canada is in such huge demand right now both as a country and as an educational system,” Ron Seguin, the college’s vice president of international relations, campus development and student services, said Thursday.

The growing number of international students — they represent about 3.3 per cent of the Windsor-Essex population — was part of the discussion Thursday when the Building Migrant Resilience in Cities Windsor City Network held a forum at the University of Windsor. The forum talked about helping international students while they are studying here and to find employment and permanent residence.

Like the University of Windsor, the college is getting most of its international students from China and India.

The students are coming to Canada for an education because of an expedited Visa process in India, Seguin said, and graduates of a two-year college program or longer are automatically eligible for a three-year post graduate work permit in Canada which is driving the boost from China.

“For us it’s a new phenomenon,” Seguin said.


Paul Davidson, centre, speaks during a panel discussion on the issue of international students at post secondary institutions at the University of Windsor, Thursday, January 23, 2020.

Dax Melmer /

Windsor Star

The 6,900 international students from 55 countries at St. Clair College attend the two campuses in Windsor along with programs offered in Chatham and Toronto, he said after the forum. Most are taking business and information technology courses.

“It’s a huge economic impact,” Seguin said. “Most important, it brings diversity and the world economy to St. Clair and kids who graduate today are entering a world economy.”

Chris Busch, the University of Windsor’s acting associate vice-president of enrolment management, said there are more than 4,000 international students at the university. The growth there has been in the graduate programs and has increased from a few hundred to a few thousand international students in the last decade, Busch said.

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Paul Davidson, president of Universities Canada, said Thursday’s forum was part of a research project of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada on how to build resilient cities.

“It’s really important for the future of Canada that we continue to increase the number of international students and that they have positive experiences and contribute to the Canadian economy and Canadian society,” Davidson said.

International students — there are about 500,000 across Canada — contribute about $22 billion to the economy, he said.

It’s a myth that they displace Canadian students. The extra students allow courses and universities to grow, Davidson said.

Plus, Canada has an aging population and needs to grow by adding immigrants, he said.

Wesam AbdElhamid Mohamed, a Western University student from Egypt, said it seems like there is no monitoring or plans to deal with the growth. “The main issue is looking at students as numbers not lives,” he said during a discussion on recruitment.

Francine Schlosser, the academic director of the Building Migrant Resilience in Cities Windsor City Network and a University of Windsor professor, said international students need more help dealing with issues such as loneliness, financial hardships and finding work so they can stay in Canada. More than half of the Express Entry immigrants to Canada are international students, she said.

shill@postmedia.com

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Northwestern B.C. Indian day school to be demolished by Gitanyow First Nation

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To Wanda Good and other members of Gitanyow, the demolition of the Kitwancool Indian Day School’s building this week represents a new chapter in their lives, healing the trauma they suffered during a racist education at the federally operated institution.

On Wednesday, Good conducted a small ceremony at the school she attended from 1972 to 1980, to call back what she believes are the spirits of students that may still linger inside the building after years of abuse.

“We believe that we are our ancestors reincarnated,” she said. “The part of the spirit of that child remains where there was a trauma.”

Located on the Gitanyow reserve, a remote Indigenous community about 260 kilometres northeast of Prince Rupert, B.C., Kitwancool is among the 700 Indian day schools operated across Canada from the 1860s to 1990s. The purpose of the schools was to assimilate Indigenous children by eradicating their native languages and cultures. These schools were publicly funded and often had religious affiliations.

Years of trauma in Kitwancool day school

Kitwancool day school was established by Prince Rupert’s Anglican Diocese of Caledonia in 1938, after a representative wrote to the federal Department of Indian Affairs that local First Nation people needed education in English. It was housed in a log cabin owned by Gitanyow chief Walter Derrick until its formal campus was built in 1949.

But the education that Good and hundreds of other Indigenous children received is more a torture than enlightenment.

“I did experience and witnessed lots of strapping, punching, pulling ears,” said Good. “We actually had music teachers that … would teach us these very racist songs that we would have to sing.”

“We were not allowed to speak our language in the classroom. The children were strapped every time someone said a Gitxsan word.”

In its letter to federal Department of Indian Affairs in 1937, Prince Rupert’s Anglican Diocese of Caledonia discussed the need to build Kitwancool Indian Day School to educate Indigenous children in English. (Library and Archives Canada)

The nightmare ended in 1986, when the school was closed and students were transferred to the Gitanyow Independent School that currently provides kindergarten to Grade 6 education to about 60 children.

The day school premises were repurposed into the Gitanyow Band’s administration office before turning into a gas station several years ago. In light of the building’s disrepair, the band council decided to demolish it and has plans to erect a new gas bar at the same location.

Good said many former students of Kitwancool day school have applied for the federal Indian Day School Settlement program, which offers compensation between $10,000 and $200,000 based on abuse suffered. 


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Students left out of a vision for a “Stronger and More Resilient Canada”

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OTTAWA, ON, Sept. 23, 2020 /CNW/ – Students are disappointed by the Federal Government’s continued lack of support, following today’s Speech from the Throne. Today’s speech promised ambitious job creation strategies, which will include scaling up the Youth Employment and Skills Strategy, and helping workers receive education and accreditation. The speech made no mention of investments into post-secondary education or increased support for students – both of which are crucial for this vision.

After a summer of precarious working conditions, a lack of financial support for international students and recent graduates, and the cancelled Canada Student Service Grant, students hoped that this new parliamentary session would include increased support for post-secondary education. “Throughout the pandemic, the Federal Government has failed to adequately support students. International students and recent graduates were excluded from support plans, and those that were eligible didn’t receive enough” said Nicole Brayiannis, Canadian Federation of Students Deputy Chairperson. Instead of bridging these gaps, today’s Throne Speech emphasized a focus on job training and creation. Brayiannis added, “Students want to remind the Trudeau Government that investing in post-secondary education and supporting students who are already receiving training is essential to the goals that were identified today.”

Since March, students have been calling on the Federal Government to provide adequate financial support to ensure they can afford to continue their education amidst the current crisis. “The Trudeau Government needs to stop and listen to what students are asking for,” said Sofia Descalzi, Chairperson of the Canadian Federation of Students. “Students want the same support as everyone else to help them through this pandemic. Instead, they’ve been met with patchwork programs.”

Following the cancellation of the failed Canada Student Service Grant (CSSG), students have called for CSSG funds to be reallocated into a four-month extension of the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB), an increase of the CESB to $2000 per month, and the expansion of CESB eligibility to include international students and recent graduates. Most recently, students have endorsed Motion 46, to convert the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) into a guaranteed livable basic income.

Students assert that investments into post-secondary education are crucial for a just recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. Current students and recent graduates need adequate financial support right now. At the same time, the Federal Government should begin to move towards investing in a post-secondary education system that is fully publicly funded. By ensuring that everyone can access the post-secondary education they need, we all stand a better chance at rebuilding the economy.

The Canadian Federation of Students unites over 500,000 college and university students and more than 60 students’ unions throughout the country.

SOURCE Canadian Federation of Students

For further information: Melissa Palermo, Staff: [email protected] or 416-529-8205; Sofia Descalzi, Chairperson: [email protected] or 613-232-7394; Nicole Brayiannis, National Deputy Chairperson: [email protected] or 289-200-2375

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Husky Energy gives Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada to schools in Saskatchewan

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“The Province of Saskatchewan is proud to accept this generous donation on behalf of thousands of high school students who will benefit from increasing their knowledge of the important role that First Nation, Inuit and Métis peoples play in the history of this country,” Saskatchewan Deputy Premier and Minister of Education Gordon Wyant said.

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action cite mandatory Kindergarten to Grade Twelve curriculum on residential schools, Treaties, and Indigenous peoples’ historical and contemporary contributions as a top priority.

“The important role and long history of Indigenous People in our country has traditionally not been well told, well shared or properly included in the education system in Canada,” says Janet Annesley, Senior Vice President, Corporate Affairs and Human Resources. “Husky is honoured to be a contributing partner in this program by providing a copy of the atlas and online learning resources to students and educators to promote a better understanding of the lives and history of Indigenous Peoples in Canada.”

The Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada is a ground-breaking educational resource, unprecedented in scope. It includes a four-volume print atlas, an online interactive atlas with an accompanying app, Giant Floor Maps, and various other educational resources for classrooms. All educational resources related to the atlas will be made available online to educators in Saskatchewan at Canadian Geographic Education’s website (http://www.cangeoeducation.ca/resources/indigenous_resources/) as part of this gift.

“Indspire applauds Husky Energy’s generous donation of copies of the Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada to all high schools in Saskatchewan,” says Indspire CEO Roberta Jamieson. “Indspire is proud to have been a partner in the creation of the atlas and is delighted to see this resource become more readily available to teachers and students to promote learning about First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples, nations and territories as a vital part of Canada’s identity.”

The Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada was produced in partnership with the Assembly of First Nations, Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, the Métis National Council, the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation, and Indspire. The atlas was published by The Royal Canadian Geographical Society in 2018 as a response to the Truth and Rec- onciliation Commission’s Calls to Action and as a Canada 150 legacy project supported by Canadian Heritage.

Please join us for our video announcement: youtube.com/canadiangeographic.

Social Media Links


Husky

Métis National Council

Twitter: @HuskyEnergy

Twitter: @MNC_Tweets

Instagram: @HuskyEnergy


Facebook: @HuskyEnergy

Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami

Canadian Geographic

@ITK_CanadaInuit

Twitter: @CanGeo


Instagram: @CanGeo

Assembly of First Nations

Facebook: @CanGeo

Twitter: @AFN_Updates

National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation


Twitter: @NCTR_UM

RCGS

Indspire

Twitter: @RCGS_SGRC

Twitter: @Indspire


Instagram: @indspire.ca

Canadian Geographic Education

Facebook: @Indspire

Twitter: @CanGeoEdu

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/indspire


SOURCE Royal Canadian Geographical Society

For further information: Media Information: Kim Guttormson, Manager, Communication Services, Husky Energy, Phone: (403) 298-7088, Email: [email protected]; Nick Foglia, Vice President, Communications & Marketing, Indspire, Phone: (416) 987- 0240, Email: [email protected], Email: [email protected], Sarah Legault, National Director of Development Royal Canadian Geographical Society Mobile: (416) 277-4341, Email: [email protected]

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