Indigenous Students

Hay’sxw’qa si’em!

Royal Roads University members acknowledge that we learn, work, and live on the traditional lands of the Xwsepsum (Esquimalt) and Lekwungen (Songhees) ancestors and families. We also acknowledge the traditional lands and the history, and knowledge sharing with the neighbouring Nations, Scia’new (Beecher Bay) and T’Sou-ke (Sooke).

At Royal Roads University, we share much more than the land the university is on. We understand the value of living in a sustainable manner. We appreciate the world around us and work together to build communities. We are grateful to the Coast Salish people for sharing their traditions and teachings about our role in society, community and nature.

Our involvement with Indigenous students began in July 1996, when Royal Roads University was established. In our first cohort, a member, Michelle Corfield, who is Nuu-chah-nulth from the Ucluelet First Nation, was Royal Roads' first Indigenous student. Michelle became so inspired through the program that she went on to complete her doctorate. Like Michelle, hundreds of Indigenous students who are now alumni of Royal Roads’ graduate and undergraduate programs. Our ongoing relationship with Indigenous and Metis students and communities is an important pillar in extending our educational reach beyond the classroom experience and our mission is to continue to build a strong working relationship with the indigenous and Metis communities, locally, nationally and internationally.

Supporting Indigenous Students

At Royal Roads University, we welcome Indigenous students and we’ve created a number of programs designed specifically to support our shared respect for the value of community. In addition to our full selection of degree programs, we also offer customized training programs to allow prospective students to discover meaningful and practical tools to help preserve the cultural significance and manage community resources. At Royal Roads University, in the office of Indigenous Education and Student Services (IESS), is able to offer Indigenous students’ academic, financial, and cultural support to assist and guide them throughout their studies and time with Royal Roads.

Indigenous  Education

IESS is continuing to find ways to build and incorporate Indigenous education into already existing programs and will continue to consult with faculty and staff, to implement Indigenous curriculum into their classes. IESS and RRU will focus on facilitating long term relationships and partnerships with Indigenous communities, governments, private corporations and educational institutions. As IESS works with Indigenous communities to develop sustainable and progressive learning environments, these types of programs will build collaboration to enhance community engagement in the development of leadership and capacity building with a strong foundation of respect. IESS assists and helps guide program curriculum and development for Indigenous students, community members, and to support RRU faculty and students to also engage in a number of different research projects related to Indigenous culture and history.

Examples of programs:

  • School of Leadership Studies - in addition to the existing programs in the School of Leadership Studies, Indigenous Students have compiled 'Digital Storytelling using Creative Technologies', organized an 'Indigenous Speakers Series of Gifted Writers, Artists and Scholars', and developed a 'Youth Engagement and Leadership Training.'
  • Continuing Studies at Royal Roads offers Indigenous cultural-related course and certificate programs that have included: language and knowledge, cultural understanding, and practice and skill based courses. For example, 'Conflict Resolution: Building on Cultures of Peace and Harmony' was offered in conjunction with the British Columbia Treaty Commission, and the Native Plant Propagation partnered with Tsawout First Nation.

If you have questions about program admissions or program requirements, our Indigenous Education programs, or if you would like to learn more about participating in a learning community, please email Indigenous Education or visit Indigenous Education and Student Services.