Elevating Métis voices
The Indigenous Student Centre welcomes Laura Forsythe as the Métis Inclusion Coordinator, a newly created role funded by the Indigenous Initiatives Fund. In this position, she will contribute to the success of Métis students and increase understanding of the importance of Métis cultures in the University of Manitoba community.
“Over 60 per cent of the Indigenous community at the University of Manitoba identify as Métis,” says Forsythe. “As a Métis woman, I am committed to inspiring transformative change in education by creating learning environments that utilize Métis perspectives and providing safe spaces for all learners to explore their identity.”
Forsythe is a Métis woman from the Red River Settlement. She holds a BA in First Nations Studies, a B.Ed. specializing in Indigenous Perspectives in Education and a Post-Baccalaureate in Early Learning from Simon Fraser University. She is currently a graduate student in the master’s program at the University of Manitoba Native Studies Department, with a specialization in Indigenous Education.
Recently, Forsythe wrote the core curriculum for the Métis Nation British Columbia exploring identity, contemporary perspectives and Métis children in care.
As a member of the Indigenous Learning Task Force of SelfDesign, she seeks to advocate for the inclusion of Indigenous knowledge into the curriculum for thousands of students.
Forsythe is the vice-president of the Native Studies Graduate Student Association, which recently hosted the Rising Up Conference, which brought 58 scholars from around the world to Winnipeg to discuss their research in Indigenous Issues. She is also the co-editor of Transgressions: Cultural Studies and Education, which will be published this fall.
The Indigenous Initiatives Fund was created to support projects that will advance the University’s Indigenous achievement goals which are woven throughout the five key priorities in the University’s Strategic Plan, 2015-2020, Taking Our Place.
Indigenous Achievement is a pillar of Front and Centre — the campaign for the University of Manitoba, with $65 million directed toward this priority. By collaborating with Indigenous communities and stakeholders, the University of Manitoba is striving to be a welcoming place that translates into success for Indigenous students and their families.