The Task Force calls on our University to fund a second Indigenous Recruitment Officer position to promote McGill University in a broader range of Indigenous communities and to support recruitment from any future pathway partnerships (immediate-term).
- In 2017, a second Indigenous Outreach Associate position was created for Indigenous Recruitment.
- In 2019, with the launch of the new Indigenous Enrolment Strategy, this role evolved to focus on relationship building with Indigenous communities and development of outreach programming, while offering support for recruitment activities.
The Task Force calls on our University to increase the enrolment of Indigenous students in university and efforts must begin much earlier than CEGEP. The transitions from primary school to high school to college and then to university represent potential barriers to progress. Students may require comprehensive support through each level to remain engaged. We recommend working closely with Indigenous communities to create transition and support programs to assist with those transitions. For example, enhance pre-high school outreach programs and communication materials to include more schools with significant Indigenous enrolment. In the immediate to medium term, McGill should:
- Extend the SEDE Homework Zone program to include more Indigenous communities near Montreal. In addition, more recruiting should target younger age groups (immediate term); and
- Work with local educational stakeholders such as Kiuna College to establish explicit educational pathways from high school, to CEGEP, to university (medium term).
- Enrolment Services expanded the Homework Zone program to four schools: H.S. Billings High School, Karonhianonhnha, St. Willibrord, and Kahnawake Survival School.
- Enrolment Services also created the ChangeMakers Indigenous Youth Symposium and Program to introduce Homework Zone students to the Engineering Design Cycle problem-solving methodology and to McGill.
The Task Force calls on our University to advocate for an increase in the number of seats specifically available to Indigenous students who plan to study Medicine in the provincial MDCM Quebec First Nations and Inuit Faculty of Medicine Program. Currently just four MDCM seats are allocated for Indigenous students provincially, which the four universities share.
- The Indigenous Health Curriculum Committee increased allocation by two, for a total of six seats for Indigenous students to enter the Quebec First Nations and Inuit Faculties of Medicine Program.
The Task Force calls on our University to improve financial support for Indigenous students through the following measures:
- Adjust cost structures for Indigenous students, for example, by allocating automatic awards for new and returning students, while establishing a clear and equitable self-identification model to support these measures (medium term);
- Create a fund to award scholarships for special opportunities, e.g. summer undergraduate research in labs (including STEM programs) with flexible eligibility criteria (immediate term);
- Ensure Indigenous student recruitment and retention is a key focus for the next University Advancement fundraising campaign, to create new undergraduate and graduate funding opportunities and to expand services to Indigenous students, including those within STEM programs (medium term);
- Consider implementing a student funding model similar to the Haudenosaunee Promise at Syracuse University, which provides tuition and mandatory fee waivers for Indigenous learners from proximate territories, and was created “to recognize Syracuse University’s gratitude and appreciation for the historical, political, and cultural legacies of the Haudenosaunee, and to honour the bond that has developed between them” (medium term);
- Take concrete steps toward the provision of waivers of tuition and mandatory fees for all Indigenous students enrolled at McGill (medium term).
Since the Fall of 2018, the Scholarships & Student Aid Office has dedicated bursaries for McGill's annual Hot Cities of the World Tour for Indigenous students.
The Task Force calls on our University to fund Indigenous Access McGill in a sustainable manner to ensure the ongoing support of Indigenous students enrolled in Social Work at McGill.
- The School of Social Work has allocated permanent funding since 2019.