More Funding For Indigenous Education

Melaine Mark announces new funding at the University of Fraser Valley today


The provincial government is investing more in Indigenous education programs in the Fraser Valley.

This afternoon Melanie Mark, minister of advanced education, skills and training, will announce the details of the new funding at the University of Fraser Valley, Aboriginal Gathering Place.

Rodney Porter communications manager for Mark said that the funding will create 97,000 jobs and the government will be investing $21.1 million over three years into different indigenous training programs.

Porter said there are 45 training programs that will range from culinary arts, tourism, business management and public safety.  

Today’s announcement follows a series of announcements connected to promoting Indigenous participation in advanced education and training programs.

More money, more programs

Yesterday, Mark announced a partnership between Songhees Nation and Camosun college with the launch of a a new hospitality program. The Aboriginal Culinary Arts, Hospitality and Tourism Management program will provide students with Professional Cook level 1 certification as well as two applied tourism and hospitality courses and hospitality certificates, such as Food Safe.

Students will also have the support of Elders and the program will include cultural elements and the ministry will be investing $655,000 over two years.

Earlier this year the NDP announced $50 million to support revitalization and preservation of Indigenous languages in the province and more than $11 million to bring high speed internet to Indigenous communities in B.C.

Part of a broader strategy

According to government statistics, the number of Aboriginal students in postsecondary education has grown over the last decade but the province has set the following goals for 2020.

  • Increase the number of credentials awarded to Aboriginal learners by 75 per cent (from 2,634 in 2010/11 to 4,609 in 2020/21)
  • Increase the percentage of Aboriginal youth making the transition from K–12 to post-secondary education to 90 per cent.  

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