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The Role of Universities in Reconciliation

Published March 23, 2016, by the University of Ontario Institute of Technology.

The University of Ontario Institute of Technology hosted a panel of thinkers on the critical role of universities in fostering reconciliation with First Nations, Inuit and Métis in Canada.

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada describes the legacy of residential schools as an "unresolved trauma passed from generation to generation," one that "has had a profound effect on the relationship between Aboriginal peoples and other Canadians."

On March 17, 2016, a panel of leading thinkers gathered at the university to discuss, 'What is the role of universities in responding to the Commission’s clarion call for all of us to work toward reconciliation?'

The purpose of the panel was to foster awareness, understanding and action in relation to this pressing question.


Speakers included: Tim McTiernan, PhD (past President, University of Ontario Institute of Technology); Phil Fontaine (Former National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations); Shirley Williams (Elder and Professor Emeritus at Trent University); Carl James, PhD (York University); Natalie Oman, PhD (University of Ontario Institute of Technology); Chief Kelly LaRocca (Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation); Suzann Stewart, PhD (University of Toronto); and Kirsten Anker, PhD, McGill University. The panel was moderated by Thomas McMorrow, PhD (University of Ontario Institute of Technology). Watch and listen to a recording of the event, which began with a smudging ceremony led by Jill Thompson and Chris Grol from the UOIT-Baagwating Indigenous Student Centre.