Faculty of Arts receives US$ 1.25-million grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

Published: 14 June 2019

The Mellon grant will support a new Indigenous Studies and Community Engagement Initiative, to be based in the Faculty of Arts

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has awarded a US$1.25-million grant to McGill University, in support of a new Indigenous Studies and Community Engagement Initiative. The Initiative will be implemented over the next five years.

Drawing upon the Faculty’s broad and rich expertise across the Humanities and Social Sciences, the impact of the Mellon grant will allow the University to realize its deep and enduring commitment to Indigenous student success, while establishing McGill as a leading institution of higher learning in Eastern Canada with respect to Indigenous scholarship and community partnerships.

The Indigenous Studies and Community Engagement Initiative will contribute to efforts such as:

  • Building on our existing Minor program in Indigenous Studies to create a Majors and Honours, as well the longer-term goal of a graduate option.
  • Supporting tenure-track academics who seek to understand Indigenous societies from within, while recognizing and engaging with their constitutive philosophies, histories, epistemologies, identities, practices of political governance, cultures, and languages.
  • In-community pedagogies and partnerships with educators, administrators, and knowledge keepers
  • Cultivation of new partnerships with both English and French-speaking Indigenous communities, ensuring that linguistic and cultural diversity is a signature feature of this effort.
  • Ensuring a sense of community for Indigenous scholars and students through scholarly interactions generated by new teaching and research opportunities, and through public events that highlight Indigenous leadership and scholarship, and create opportunities for knowledge sharing and networking, within the McGill community and beyond.
  • New dedicated space to promote a sense of community for students and scholars across our Faculties as well as from communities outside McGill.
  • New Indigenous Artist-in-Residence, Elder-in-Residence and Writer-in-Residence programs.
  • The Mellon Distinguished Lecture: an annual opportunity to bring a world-renowned Indigenous scholar or leader to campus for a public lecture, and to lead workshops, symposia and other events.


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