Aboriginal Awareness Days & Pow Wow at York University

by NationTalk on March 5, 20091582 Views

TORONTO, March 4, 2009 — First Nations dancers in colourful regalia will open Aboriginal Awareness Days and Pow Wow at York University on Thursday, a three-day celebration that will feature traditional singing and dancing, dramatic performances, workshops and film.“Respecting and Protecting Our Mother Earth” is the theme for the seventh annual event, organized by the Aboriginal Students Association at York and the Office of Aboriginal Student Community.

Two new components have been added this year. At Aboriginal Youth Education Day, on Friday, Aboriginal high school students from the Greater Toronto Area and surrounding First Nations communities will be on campus to experience the post-secondary environment and to gather information that will help them to make informed decisions about their future pathways.

Also new is an Aboriginal Alumni Brunch on Saturday, March 7 at 10:00 a.m. preceding the annual Pow Wow at York University’s Keele campus. The event will be an opportunity for Aboriginal alumni of York to get involved early in the University’s development of a campus strategic plan for the Aboriginal community. The brunch will be hosted by Professor Bonita Lawrence, Program Coordinator for York’s Race, Ethnicity and Indigeneity program in the School of Social Sciences.

Well-known Aboriginal leaders and activists will speak on Friday, including Ruby Montour (Six Nations), Haudenosaunee Men’s Fire, and Bob Lovelace (Ardoch Lake). Aboriginal Awareness Days & Pow Wow will conclude on Saturday with a traditional Pow Wow at Vari Hall on York’s Keele campus. First Nations dancers of all ages will be performing various dance styles from men’s Grass and Fancy to women’s Fancy Shawl and Jingle Dress. The afternoon will also feature a special performance by world champion Hoop Dancer Lisa Odjig.

Native Arts & Crafts vendors will be set up in Central Square and Bear Pit areas during the three days.

The complete schedule of events can be found at the Aboriginal Services website.

For a map and directions, click here.

York University is the leading interdisciplinary research and teaching university in Canada. York offers a modern, academic experience at the undergraduate and graduate level in Toronto, Canada’s most international city. The third largest university in the country, York is host to a dynamic academic community of 50,000 students and 7,000 faculty and staff, as well as 190,000 alumni worldwide. York’s 11 faculties and 23 research centres conduct ambitious, groundbreaking research that is interdisciplinary, cutting across traditional academic boundaries. This distinctive and collaborative approach is preparing students for the future and bringing fresh insights and solutions to real-world challenges. York University is an autonomous, not-for-profit corporation.

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Media Contact:

Randy Pitawanakwat, Coordinator, Aboriginal Student Community, 416 736-2100 x22607 or 416-788-3401, rpitawan@yorku.ca

Janice Walls, Media Relations, York University, 416 736 2100 x22101 / wallsj@yorku.ca

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