Universities Canada has released its recommendations for the 2017 budget to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finances. I was pleased to see that the recommendations focus on three strategic areas:
1. Research and innovation, with a focus on sustained and transformative support for discovery research through the federal research granting councils; sustained support for the Canada Foundation for Innovation; and new investments in international research collaboration;
2. Indigenous higher education, with an emphasis on direct financial assistance for Indigenous students and initiatives that support Indigenous student access, retention and academic success at university; and
3. Talent mobilization through international student mobility and work-integrated learning, as well as enhanced labour market information.
As I have progressed through my Queen's University course, entitled Policy and Models in Canadian Aboriginal Education: From Residential Schools to Culture-Based Education, it has become clear that there has been a funding shortfall that prevents many Aboriginal students from accessing post-secondary education. This results in a shortage of professionals in many disciplines, and especially in the educational sector, who have expertise in Indigenous knowledge and culture.
The only way to positively move forward as a society that is truly inclusive is to ensure that all Canadians have equal access to quality education at all levels. Increasing capacity in the area of Aboriginal education will ensure that access occurs across Canada.
Read the news release by Universities Canada here...