Dawson College (Kiuna - Centre d'études collégiales des Premières Nations)
Designed by and for First Nations, but open to all! Kiuna’s goal is to democratize access to post-secondary education for First Nations people. This college studies centre, open since 2011, is now recognized for its culturally appropriate educational services, which translate into a unique environment in which programs, student services, human resources, Teaching methods and materials reflect Indigenous cultures and traditions.
About this establishment
Kiuna is the appropriation of the school by the First Nations without extracting western knowledge. It is a place of reclamation and revitalization of First Nations languages and cultures where we learn not only about First Nations perspectives and worldviews, but also their multiple cultural contributions to today’s globalized society. Above all, Kiuna is a place where First Nations ways of life and know-how are celebrated. Kiuna is hosted in the community of Odanak, in Abenaki territory located in the administrative region of Centre-du-Québec between Sorel-Tracy and Trois-Rivières. The host community is bilingual, an essential factor for receiving students whose second language is either English or French. The administrative, support and non-teaching professional team consists of 26 members, 65.4% of whom are from a First People. All Kiuna employees are bilingual. These positions are filled by highly experienced resources in the First Nations community and the wealth of their experience is a tremendous asset to Kiuna and its students. Kiuna has nine classrooms equipped with high-tech equipment, a common room, two kitchens for preparing meals for cultural activities, offices for teachers, a room for the psychosocial and psychological support services, a space for student radio, a documentation centre and an outdoor cultural site including a traditional garden, outdoor classrooms, and traditional dwellings. Kiuna is a First Nations post-secondary institution adapted to the culture and aspirations of its students.