Students from the first ACS cohort attend the program's launch on April 6. ACS is designed to serve as a stepping stone to a long-term career at the U of S (David Stobbe photo).

Aboriginal career start

More than 160 guests attended the April 6 launch of the Aboriginal Career Start (ACS) program at the U of S, which will help graduates from partner institutions gain some practical on-the-job training and experience.

As part of the program, the first of this kind at the U of S, Aboriginal graduates from the Saskatchewan Indian Institute of Technology and the Gabriel Dumont Institute of Native Studies and Applied Research will be provided paid training and an immersive workplace orientation at the U of S.

"This program is a great opportunity for recent graduates from partner institutions in our community to learn skills that will serve them well in their careers, whether that is here at the university or in the community," said Peter Stoicheff, U of S president.

Participants, 16 in total, will receive on-the-job training in university departments, including Financial Services and Human Resources, and will benefit from professional guidance and mentorship, and develop valuable interpersonal, management and teamwork skills. ACS is designed to develop necessary financial and administrative skills to serve as a stepping-stone to a long-term career at the university.

"They'll learn about institutional policies and procedures, as well as integral business processes," said Cheryl Carver, associate vice-president of human resources.

With respect to the individual and personal growth of participants, Carver continued, "they will also be given guidance and mentorship, and develop valuable interpersonal, management and teamwork skills."

The program, expected to cost the U of S around $50,000 per year with the partner institutions subsidizing wages, is part of the university's commitment to Aboriginal engagement.

"We think that it's important to run a program like this," Stoicheff said. "We would hope that we can build and expand on this."


Zaheed Bardai is a communications specialist with Human Resources.
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