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Simon Fraser University and Its Relationship With First Nations People Essay

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Updated: Nov 14th, 2021

Simon Fraser University, located in Burnaby promotes various programs for First Nations Studies, based on cultural, historical and anthropological perspectives. First Nation People are the indigenous people or the aborigines of Canada and in Columbia, who are settled in the southern part of the country and are separated from other people in enjoying the same privileges of Canada. “First Nations refers to those peoples who have aboriginal rights or a treaty relationship with Canada and who have their collectivities represented with a local government defined as Bands under the Indian Act.” (Battiste, and Sheelagh Graduate, 6). Though they are officially recognized by the government of Canada, they are denied most of their rights mentioned in the articles of Canadian constitution and termed as the registered Indians or enjoying the status of Indians. In this context, the studies focused on the legal and the moral rights of First Nation people assume greater importance. Simon Fraser University evaluated mostly the educational, moral and legal rights of First Nation people, how they are denied of their rights, only for the reason that they are immigrants. The University provides its students opportunities to learn about the cultures, languages, the first inhabitants of Canada, aboriginal rights, and government relations. Students of the University are also provided with the facility to study about the backwardness of First Nation people and the preventive methods that can be adopted for their betterment, through researches and surveys conducted among them. The paper attempts to find out the different educational and legal rights of the First Nation people, as it is viewed by Simon Fraser University. The University has designed programs for both First Nation students and non-native students by focusing on the traditional culture, language and histories. Another package comes and the studies offered by the university is the study of “the development of federal and provincial policies toward native peoples, aboriginal rights, aboriginal rights and title questions, economic development, self-government, and intergenerational issues.” (Simon Fraser University). The Simon Fraser University is engaged in various measures including education, legal rights, and economic freedom éclat first. The University had formed a three year academic plan which focused on First Nations isues. A notable thing is that the study had included candidates from the remote areas of the First Nation regions. From the result of the implementation of these strategies one can see a significant development in the life of First Nations people especially in the fields of self-Government and economics. Secondly gave more emphasis on modifying the existing institutional strategies. Through the implementation of new strategies the promoters aimed to transform the approach to academic programming, community engagement, student support, and quality important research among the First Nation regions. The given statement reveals the preplanned structure of the program. The online article says; “The vision and action plan are premised on the need to develop an integrative strategy of First Nations cultures, languages, histories, experiences, values and beliefs within our academic programming and research initiatives.”( First Nations University-Wide Strategic plan, p. 3).

The new strategy concentrated to practice cultural, religious, and traditional values. First Nations people in Canada have been facing many problems within the nation and outside the nation. Problems of human rights, racial discriminations, crises in civil rights and law and inadequate healthcare facilities are very crucial in First Nations regions. The Simon Fraser University developed a new strategy to improve the relationship between the University’s pedagogical and research procedures. Legal rights and economic freedom éclat first. The University had formed a three year Academic plan which focused on First Nations Issues. For giving enough awareness about judicial procedures SFU designed strategies for legal practice and awareness. Large number of civilians from the First Nations are arrested for smuggling and other anti-social activities. Many women and men are denied proper trials. The University provides number of financial aids and scholarships for deservers. Students from First Nations and other backward regions have an opportunity to utilize these helps. The article says, “SFU awards more than 4,000 entrance scholarships and awards ranging between Can$500 and Can$34,000 to outstanding new students.” (Simon Fraser University).

The legal rights of the First Nations were really matter of dispute and most of their rights were denied to them by the government. It has been viewed that the Harper government battered the relationship between First Nations and the federal Government. Things were not different in British Columbia where “thousands of Salish people rally outside the BC land registry in New Westminster and demand recognition of their territorial ownership and jurisdiction. Indians are prohibited from claiming unsurveyed lands. The government denied them their collective rights and promoted only the individual rights.” (Chapter 1: Dispossession and Resistance in British Columbia, 6). It created a stir in the First Nations but their protestations were proved to be futile. Majority of the researches of Simon Fraser University have studied about this illegal denial. Though there were some U.N. laws that assure the legal rights of the First Nations like the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous people, especially appeared in the U.N. Declaration on Human Rights, they were really incapable to assure their legal rights. These people were marginalized and regarded as vulnerable and were destined to bear with all abuses. Simon Fraser University selected not only the First Nation people of Canada but also the First Nation people of Columbia for their studies.

The Simon Fraser University implements an educational program known as Kamloops which offers a chance to complete SFU degrees, diplomas and certificates, all from a unique First Nations perspective. The following data makes it clear when it says: “For the past 18 years, students from various cultures have come to Kamloops from aboriginal communities in the interior and from many other places across British Columbia and Canada.” (First Nations, Simon Fraser University, p. 2).

From the above data one can infer that Simon Fraser University has adopted and implemented various educational programs for the betterment of First Nations people for many years. The University provides much care regarding the welfare of the First Nations students and allows them different grades so as to help them in their studies.

When analyzing the assorted actions of Simon Fraser University, one can understand that SFU is adopting a variety of programs, researches, studies, etc, for the well being of First Nation people as well as students. The university aims at assuring education, legal rights, economic freedom, and academic plan of the First Nation students. Most of the studies conducted by the University, stick on the fact that the legal and the moral rights of the First Nations people should be preserved. The University has adopted different pedagogical and research procedures as helpful factor of the study. If one analyses the state of the First Nation people, it is clear that these people in Canada and British Columbia are in need of proper care form the government and from the authorities who could implement various measures for the welfare of these indigenous people.

Works Cited

  1. Battiste, Marie., and Mc Lean, Sheelangh. . Canadian Council of Learning (CCL) Ottawa, on. 2005. Web.
  2. Chapter 1: Dispossession and Resistance in British Columbia: Chronology: 1872.
  3. First Nations University-Wide Strategic Plan: Executive Summary. Simon Fraser University. 2007.
  4. First Nations: Simon Fraser University: SFU Kamloops Program. 2009.
  5. Simon Fraser University: First Nation Studies. 2008.
  6. Simon Fraser University: Financial Aid. Peterson’s. 2009.
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