Workshops now welcoming community members
The Workshops in Building Capacity for Reconciliation program is returning to Augustana for its second year. The workshops are free for Augustana students, and those who attend all six are eligible for the Co-Curricular Certificate in Building Capacity for Reconciliation.
The workshops are intended to help students build relationships, gain an understanding of historical events, current relations, and what needs to happen to “foster a relationship of Wahkohtowin in our community.”
This year, there are a few changes in the program. The program is open to students for free and to members of the public for a fee of $75 for all six workshops. There are 80 spots for all the sessions; half are allotted to students and half to the public.
The opening part of each workshop, which includes a presentation by a speaker will be free to participants of last year’s workshops, with the registered participants engaging in discussion afterwards.
Last year, the program had issues with microphones and sound quality during some of the presentations. The issue will be resolved this year as the workshops will take place in the chapel and JPLPAC, instead of the Wahkohtowin Lodge.
Fourth-year drama student, Gavin Wilkes, said that he enjoyed the sessions. “They were informative in that there was always Indigenous presence and speakers and guests who came to each workshop,” said Wilkes.
Interim Aboriginal Students’ Office Coordinator, Megan Caldwell, said the workshops are important for several reasons.
“It’s important to have that opportunity for people to learn more, to understand the experiences of Indigenous people both in the past and currently,” said Caldwell. “We are in this post-TRC Canada, working towards what reconciliation might look like for Canada as a whole.”
Caldwell said the workshops are a good way for students to engage with these ideas in different ways.
“The workshops are different than in a classroom, and when students go out into the world whether it be in their job or their personal life, they will have these tools to help facilitate engaging in reconciliation.”
The Workshops in Building Capacity for Reconciliation program will run throughout the academic year, with the first workshop happening on Sept. 27, 2017.