December 1, 2005
Crown Investments Corporation (CIC) and the University of Regina have signed two new agreements to provide educational and leadership opportunities for First Nations and Métis students at the U of R and First Nations University of Canada.
The Aboriginal Student Recruitment and Retention Office will promote the importance of a university education to First Nations and Metis youth. It will also help students succeed in university by developing their academic skills, and providing transition and career programming. The Undergraduate Leadership Program: Connecting Through Cultural Leadership, will provide Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal students with leadership training in an intercultural context. CIC will provide a total of $2.5 million to the two programs over the next five years.
"This partnership with the two universities will help provide the education and leadership training that will prepare First Nations and Metis students for fulfilling careers in our Crown corporations and in other companies in our province," Crown Management Board Minister Pat Atkinson said. "This is part of our government's commitment to building a bright future right here at home for our young people and our First Nations and Metis people."
The two new programs are part of a $20 million investment announced by CIC in 2003 to create more opportunities for youth and Aboriginal participation in Saskatchewan's Crown corporations. Statistics show that half of the current Crown employees, or about 5,000 people, will retire by 2017. The Crowns will need to replace them with educated, skilled workers.
"We want to encourage Aboriginal students to come to university and help them succeed in their studies. We are looking to the generation of Aboriginal young people currently entering university to provide the kind of social, political and economic leadership that 21st Century Canada will need," University of Regina President Robert Hawkins said.
"This agreement allows FNUC and the U of R to strengthen their recruitment and retention strategies with regard to First Nations and Aboriginal students, and it enables us to offer programs that develop the leadership and cross-cultural skills so necessary for success in our increasingly diversified province. Everyone benefits from this collaboration: FNUC, U of R, CIC, and the people of Saskatchewan," FNUC Acting President Charles Pratt said.
The Aboriginal Student Recruitment and Retention Office has already begun some activities, while preparatory work is underway for recruitment of students for the Undergraduate Leadership Program. Classes for that program will start in the fall 2006 semester.
For More Information, contact:
Crown Investments Corporation
Phone: (306) 787-5889
Cell: (306) 539-2716
First Nations University of Canada
External Relations, University of Regina