The University of Calgary has been developing a strategy, ii’ taa’poh’to’p, to help guide the university toward reconciliation. This is incredibly important and we are all working to understand and to learn. One of the first steps involves acknowledging that indigenous peoples have been living on this land long before european settlers arrived. We make the territorial acknowledgement in ceremonies and large gatherings - but now that we are all participating from our own homes it has become more important for us all to acknowledge the First Nations, and the treaty that we are all part of.
One simple way to make this acknowledgement is to display it in online spaces. We’ve just added a widget in Brightspace so that any instructor can add it to their course. It’s a very small step, but making this visible within a course is an important message to share both with indigenous and settler students.
It may also serve as a prompt - not everyone will be participating from the same region, and this provides an opportunity for a discussion about the indigenous context of our homes and workplaces.
The content for the widget was produced by our Office of Indigenous Engagement, and shared through the cultural protocol page on their website. The Brightspace widget just removes a few steps for instructors who want to add it to their courses.