Tuesday, April 23, 2024

UC sign Canadian MOU on Indigenous research collaboration

The University of Canterbury’s Tulo Centre of Indigenous Economics and Canada’s Thompson Rivers University (TRU) have committed to further collaboration and exploration of opportunities to deliver unique Indigenous-led programming through the signing of two memorandums of understanding in Kamloops yesterday.

The MOU signed by all parties creates a formal pathway for the institutions to cooperate and collaborate to research, support and build capacity for Indigenous public administration, governance, leadership and economic development.

The Tulo Centre and TRU also renewed their existing MOU to strengthen the relationship between the two institutions who have worked together since 2008 to deliver accredited certificate programs in First Nation tax administration, applied economics and lands governance.

“Our goal at the Tulo Centre is to help our students become catalysts of change within their communities by using the education they receive in our programs to support economic development and wealth creation on First Nation lands,” Tulo Centre Chair Michael LeBourdais said.

“We are excited to formalise and renew our commitments to working with our partners to help break down the barriers Indigenous nations face on their paths to self-determination and economic reconciliation.”

UC Vice-Chancellor, Professor Cheryl de la Rey, signed the MOU on behalf of the university at the event.

“We are proud to support and help build Indigenous self-governance and economic development locally and globally through higher education. This MOU takes our cooperation to a new level by formalising our partnership across the Pacific,” she said.

“We share the vital commitment to teamwork, cooperation and partnership and look forward to continuing our journey of learning together.

“We are honoured to be a partner in supporting Indigenous students who will use their education to go forward and create meaningful change.”

TRU President and Vice-Chancellor, Brett Fairbairn said the signing of the MOU was a strengthening of its commitment to serving Indigenous students and the communities of the region.

Students from the Tulo Centre and Māori students from the Ngāi Tahu Research Centre at the University of Canterbury, Ōtautahi Christchurch, Aotearoa New Zealand, have been studying Indigenous Economics together since 2020 in what began as an informal pilot arrangement.

“The signing of the MOU signals an important step for Ngāi Tahu and formalises the current strong relationship that we have with the Tulo Centre. The opportunity to share resources and expertise with international partners on a more formal footing signals the strength that we can deliver through a formal partnership approach,” said Pou Whakarae of the University of Canterbury’s Office of Treaty Partnership, Professor Te Maire Tau.

“We will have greater capacity to support cross delivery and accreditation of programming between and across entities which will enhance programming through joint curriculum, research and teaching.”

Thompson Rivers University offers open admission to 140 programs and is also home to Open Learning, which gives students a choice of 60 online programs they can study wherever they live.

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