Luncheon recognizes aboriginal achievement
A luncheon March 16 involving the University president, some 70 aboriginal students and about 20 faculty and staff marked a transition from Aboriginal Awareness Week events designed to simply raise awareness to those aimed at celebrating aboriginal achievement.
Leanne Bellegarde-Daniels, the director of aboriginal business education programs in the College of Commerce, said the luncheon was expected to “start people thinking about aboriginal achievement” by recognizing the contributions of students as well as aboriginal and non-aboriginal faculty and staff.
“They’re achievers in some way in this institution,” she said, describing the invited guests. “With this event, we put a face to aboriginal achievement.”
Bellegarde-Daniels, who helped organize the luncheon along with the University’s seven aboriginal student societies, said colleges and units were asked to put forward names of students deserving of recognition due to their academic or athletic efforts, or their receipt of awards or scholarships. “All these levels of achievement become apparent as we try to pull this all together.”
While the lunch was informal, President Peter MacKinnon paid tribute to the students and staff, as well as to the student societies for their contribution to the aboriginal student experience on campus, with the presentation of eagle feather lapel pins.