3. Academic Programs and Curriculum - Achieved & Further Expanded

29. Health Professions Training (implemented in fiscal year 2018)

The Task Force calls on our University to implement a five-year program (renewable) to increase the number of Indigenous students in all health-related professions based on Indigenous needs and priorities.The program should:

  • Work closely with Indigenous communities, educators and health professionals;
  • Specify a series of concrete steps and strategies including proactive intervention (the ‘Early Exposure Phase’) among Indigenous youth, transition support for Indigenous CEGEP students and mature students, and retention support for students in place;
  • Recognize the importance of Indigenous health curricula in health professional programs, and the importance of Indigenous faculty, scholars and support staff who will deliver the program to Indigenous youth and students;
  • Encompass a wide range of health professions, including but not limited to the units such as Communication Sciences and Disorders, Nursing, Physical and Occupational Therapy in the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences; the Faculty of Dentistry; and the School of Human Nutrition in the Faculty of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences; and
  • Expand over time to include other health-related programs in other parts of the University, notably in the Faculties of Science and Education (particularly, areas of applied psychology), and in the School of Continuing Studies.


  • The Office of Indigenous Initiatives is providing centralized, responsive support to Indigenous Health Professions Program (IHPP) colleagues alongside program development in 2017. 
  • The IHPP entered its third phase focused on curriculum development in January 2019 and expanded its team to include an Elder-in-Residence and a Curriculum Developer.
  • In 2023, the Office of Indigenous Initiatives began collaborating with the Indigenous Health Professions Program (IHPP) for the development of an Indigenous Summer Institute.


31. Indigenous Studies Program (implemented in fiscal year 2018)

The Faculty of Arts is in the unique position of having an emerging discipline in its Indigenous Studies Program that stands as a significant growth area in terms of research, teaching, student interest, community engagement and alumni support. Although it is only two years old, its success aligns with experience at other institutions in Canada and the United States where full-blown Indigenous or Native Studies programs have been proven successful for the past several decades.

The Indigenous Studies Program needs to be solidified as a minor program before building out as an Institute for Indigenous Studies and Community Engagement. The Task Force calls on our University to take these steps:

  • Provide teaching support for the Indigenous Studies Program for three years by hiring of a Faculty Lecturer;
  • Provide a two-year postdoctoral fellowship to enhance research activities and opportunities in the Indigenous Studies Program; and
  • Provide support for a part-time administrator and an annual operating budget to support advising activities, the coordination of collaborative relationships with Indigenous communities and organizations, and to sponsor visiting speakers and traditional knowledge holders.


  • Under the Institute of Canadian Studies (Faculty of Arts), McGill's Undergraduate Minor in Indigenous Studies has been established, providing students with a broad, interdisciplinary perspective on key issues relating to the historical, social, and cultural dimensions of Indigenous life in Canada. The program focuses on the history of Indigenous peoples in Canada, Indigenous art and culture, the experience of Indigeneity and gender, and the legacy of Indigenous resistance to the Canadian state. 
  • The program exists of two mandatory courses, and 12 credits of electives. The mandatory courses are: INDG 200: Introduction to Indigenous Studies (3 credits), and INDG 401: Interdiscplinary Seminar in Indigenous Studies (3 credits)
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