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A New Institute For Saskatchewan's Native Peoples

SASKATCHEWAN INDIAN      JANUARY/FEBRUARY 1981      v11 n01-02 p39  
In the Report on the Cultural Conference held by the Association of Metis and Non-Status Indians of Saskatchewan, in Saskatoon, in 1976, is the recommendation:

"The Association should establish a Metis Cultural College for Native People which it would control and through which it would administer and carry out education and research programs in the communities."

This recommendation has become a reality in the form of the "Gabriel Dumont Institute of Native Studies and Applied Research", in Regina, Saskatchewan. The prolonged efforts of the Association's executive have led to an agreement with the Government of Saskatchewan whereby the necessary monies would be provided for the Institution through the Department of Continuing Education and the Department of Education.

The agreement sets out the terms under which $405,000 will be made available for the year ending in March, 1981. Of this, $110,000 have been granted to the Institute for its initial development. The agreement provides for the further funding of the Institute until 1983.

The signing of the agreement by Mr. Jim Sinclair, President of A.M.N.S.I.S., the Honourable Doug McArthur, Minister of Continuing Education and Education, and the Honourable Walter Smishek, Minister of Urban Affairs will take place during the official opening of the Gabriel Dumont Institute on Monday, October 27, at 1:30 p.m. The ceremonies will take place in the Institute's offices in the Brent Building, 2505 - 11th Avenue, Regina, Saskatchewan.

In recognition of his accepted role as a leader of the Metis people in the Northwest Territories and of his brilliant military leadership in 1885, the name of Gabriel Dumont was chosen for the new Institute. As he fought to preserve a way of life, so the new institute has been given the purpose of ". . . promoting the renewal and development of Native culture . . . ."

The mandate of the Gabriel Dumont Institute includes: a) Historical and Cultural Research and Program evaluation; b) Curriculum and Resource Development; and, c) The development of a Library Resource Centre. A fourth area, the establishment of a Native Studies Program is being examined in concert with the University of Saskatchewan. This will be an integral part of the fifth unique responsibility of the Institute, the Saskatchewan Urban Native Teacher Education Program. This program, SUNTEP, has been in place since September, in Regina and Saskatoon, with fifteen and twelve Native students respectively.

Through the guidance of an Interim Board of the Association, staffing for the above programs has been completed under the direction of Dr. Kenn Whyte, Director, and Dr. Walter Currie, Assistant Director.

At an educational conference in Saskatoon this September, under the theme, "Into the Eighties", the Constitution and Bylaws of the Gabriel Dumont Institute were amended and approved by the Assembly made up of delegates from the locals of the Metis and Non-Status Peoples of Saskatchewan. The new Management Board, responsible for the Institute and its programs, will represent " . . . the Association, the Native community at large, the University community, and the two senior levels of government."

Into the Eighties promises much for the Native Peoples of this Province with their new Gabriel Dumont Institute and with the support of the people of Saskatchewan through the Government of the Province.

For further information, contact:
Dr. Walter Currie, Assistant Director Gabriel Dumont Institute of
Native Studies and Applied Research 2505 - 11th Avenue
Regina, Saskatchewan S4P OK6 Telephone: (306) 522-5691