Indigenous Education

News and Events

Winter Solstice 2021

November 24, 2021

Save the Date for virtual Winter Solstice! Gather ‘round the fire and join us for tales, teachings and story-telling from Elder Paul Guimond and special guests Franco-Manitoban Métis storyteller Rob Malo and the Bighetty & Bighetty Puppet Show, Cree brothers from Pukatawagan, MB.

As we get ready for the longest night of the year and the season of rest, gatherings for the Winter Solstice bring comfort, warmth, and people together to share stories and laughter. In many Indigenous cultures, winter represents an ancestral spirit, so reflecting on the past by sharing stories and thanking our ancestors is an important part of honouring where we’re from, especially as we plan for the cold months ahead.

This family friendly event will be streamed live on the Indigenous Education Facebook page – no need to register, just watch!


Elder Paul Guimond

Elder Paul, Okonace (Little Eagle Bone), RRC Polytech Elder-in-Residence will begin our event with a teaching and Honour Song for this time of year.

Rob Malo

Rob Malo, also known as TiBert le Voyageur is a Franco-Manitoban Métis storyteller, author, stage performer, juggler, poet, and community builder who shares his passion for history and culture with people of all ages. He is recognized by Storytellers of Canada as being a Master Storyteller and has been the Storyteller in Residence at the University of Manitoba. Rob draws on his background as an Educational Programs Developer at the Manitoba Museum and as a Professor in the Tourism Department of l’Université de St. Boniface to delight audiences through storytelling, juggling and music. Rob has been awarded Certificates of Excellence from Interpretation Canada for both TiBert le Voyageur live presentations and digital educational tools available to teachers through the Province of Manitoba DREF website.

Bighetty & Bighetty Puppet Show

Brothers Kelsey, Andrew, Daniel and Ken Bighetty from Pukatawagan, MB, inspired by The Muppets and Fraggle Rock in their youth, have created hilarious and spontaneous characters that spread laughter across the prairies with a growing online audience. Known for their interactions with Elders and children alike, these brothers use their Cree language and culture to bring representation through humour.

Indigenous Supports Virtual Event: Live Painting with Gayle Sinclaire

November 17, 2021

Blended: In-Person & Virtual
Wednesday, December 1 – 6:30 pm
Virtual: via WebEx Events
In-Person: Limited Capacity, Indigenous Support Centre, Notre Dame Campus (F209)

Join us virtually with your family, friends, and loved ones to paint along with Gayle Sinclaire. Gayle shares a deeply spiritual experience, often sharing her traditional teachings through her demonstrations.

From Norway House Cree Nation, artist Gayle Sinclaire has pursued the use of colour through oils and acrylics on canvas and paper for the last 37 years. As a fine Arts student at the University of Manitoba Gayle began her formal inquiry into the concepts of colour and composition, the effects of light and how content can give significance to culture and spirituality. Her work is in the collections of the Manitoba Assembly of Chiefs, the community offices in Norway House and Cross Lake, and the homes and offices of numerous private patrons.

We have a limited number of painting supply packages available for students to pick up at the NDC Indigenous Support Centre (F209). Supplies included and required for this workshop are a canvas, a few paint brushes, and a few paint colours (black, white, red, blue, yellow). Supplies can be purchased at most dollar or craft stores. A cup with water and cloth or paper towel is also good to have on hand. Please contact Terri-Lynn Anderson, Navigation Coach, to arrange pickup.

Matthew Monias performs at Directions 2021

November 9, 2021

Oji-Cree artist Matthew Monias, who goes by MattMac, recently performed at Directions 2021 powered by RBC Future Launch.

Directions is an annual business and applied arts conference showcasing Red River College Polytech students and local industry practitioners. Students spent the day in Breakout Sessions, in the Networking Lounge, and at the various Roundtables.

Hailing from Garden Hill First Nation, Manitoba, Mattmac has been blind from birth. He grew up surrounded by music both on the radio and singing in his community’s gospel choir. Mattmac began to struggle with depression at a young age and credits music for helping him cope. A fully self-taught artist, he first began to make beats and write songs when he was 13-years-old, and later taught himself how to play piano and guitar. He also has impressive skills with beat production software and equipment, and attributes his creative competencies to the support of the Blind & Famous group, a USA based collective of blind music artists who collaborate and connect with one another through the internet. Mattmac hopes to continue to use his platform to inspire others to know that they can accomplish anything they set their mind to.

Watch his performance here:

Stay the Course Speaker Series: Christine Merasty

October 27, 2021

Inspiring stories from RRC’s Indigenous Alumni

How do successful people get to where they are? What did that journey look like? What did they learn and how did they stay the course? What does it mean to be an Indigenous student in post-secondary?

The Stay the Course speaker series is a hand from one generation to the next, hosted by Carla Kematch, Manager, Truth and Reconciliation and Community & Engagement. Every month, incredible RRC Indigenous Alumni share their experiences on their journey to success. Advancing Indigenous achievement at RRC means listening to Indigenous stories. This is just one of the many ways we can embed the efforts of Truth and Reconciliation in our daily lives.

Christine Merasty, Dene Cree Designs Inc.

Christine Merasty is a Denesuline First Nation woman from Lac Brochet, MB and raised in Bowsman MB. She was a part of the sixty scoop era. She completed her Grade 12 at Winnipeg Adult Education, continued into University of Winnipeg for four years, however did not receive her diploma. She then attended Red River College Polytech and graduated from the Community Development/ Community Economic Development Program. She says this is where her real learning began. She is now the owner of Dene Cree Designs Inc. with her husband Raymond Merasty.


Elders-in-Residence Cultural Centre Schedule October – December 2021

October 12, 2021

Spend time with Elder Paul Guimond and Ms. Una Swan as they host virtual drop-in centres, workshops, teachings, as well as open their door for in-person appointments.

Activities and schedule subject to change and in response to special College-wide events and holidays. Virtual sessions will be hosted via Microsoft Teams. This schedule runs until December 17, 2021.

Connect on Teams!

Students and staff can join the new Elder’s Microsoft Teams site to easily access events, add them to your calendar, and receive notifications. Virtual events and workshops will be hosted via Microsoft Teams.

To join, use code: l317iay
(Select Teams in the side bar of Microsoft Teams (right below chats), click join team in the top right corner, enter the code.)

Meet our new Navigation Coach!

October 7, 2021

We are proud to welcome  Terri-Lynn Anderson as our new Navigation Coach as part our Indigenous Student Supports team. She brings her extensive experiences to support Indigenous students on their learning journey.

Navigation Coaches are a first point of contact for current Indigenous students and can help with everything from finding your way around campus, problem-solving, sharing important resources and information, understanding College processes and accessing community services. They will also help connect you with other important support team members, who together, can ensure you receive the help you need.

Terri-Lynn Anderson

Terri-Lynn Anderson is a proud, Métis woman and mother of four. Her passion is to continue helping Indigenous students become successful in their post-secondary studies and future careers.

Click here to learn more about Terri-Lynn.

National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

September 29, 2021

Content Warning: Residential Schools

Tomorrow, September 30, is a day we’ve come to know as Orange Shirt Day, a day that encourages conversation and education on all aspects of Residential Schools. It is an opportunity to create meaningful discussion about the intergenerational effects of Residential Schools and the legacy they have left behind that affect us all.

This movement was sparked by the story of Phyllis Webstad from the Stswecem’c Xgat’tem First Nation. Phyllis was proud to wear the orange shirt her grandmother gifted to her for her first day of Residential School. The shirt was taken from her and she never saw it again. Phyllis represents the 150,000 First Nations, Inuit, and Métis children who were forcibly removed from their homes and families and taken to Residential Schools. 

September 30 has now been declared as the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation by the federal government, and so the College will be closed tomorrow; giving us all an opportunity to listen, learn, reflect, and honour the victims and survivors of the Residential School System. As the College is closed tomorrow, we have invited staff and students to wear orange today as a symbol of recognition and support.

The work of reconciliation has just begun, and it’s important for all living on Turtle Island to know, understand and have respect for the truth before real change can take effect.

Tomorrow, there are events and activities you can take part in your community or online from many organizations including the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation. You can also explore resources on our website, including the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Actions, the Library and Academic Services Resources’ National Day for Truth and Reconciliation Book & Video Guide. You can also listen to Indigenous peoples and influencers online and share their content as well as talk to your friends and family about reconciliation and share what you have learned.

This day may be difficult for some, and we want to remind you to take care of yourself and take care of each other. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to those you trust, or to one of the supports we’ve listed below.

You can be a supportive alley by respecting boundaries as many Indigenous peoples experience this trauma and pain.

Supports and Resources:

National Indian Residential School Crisis Line 1-866-925-4419

Klinic Crisis line 204-786-8686 or toll free 1-888-322-3019

RRC student supports:


Mental Health Coordinator:

Elders in Residence:  

RRC Staff: Employee Family Assistance Plan:

Self-Care Suggestions:

 *   Call a friend you trust

 *   Go for a walk outside, exercise, do some light yoga, or move your body in a way that feels accessible to you

 *   Ensure you are getting good sleep and nutrition

 *   Connect with your culture, smudge

 *   Do a mindful meditation (find online)

 *   Have a warm bath or shower

Truth and Reconciliation Week 2021 will continue on Friday, October 1st with two live events. Click here to learn more and access events.

Happy Fall Equinox

September 22, 2021

Fall Equinox has always been a significant and ceremonial time of year as we enter into equal part day and night and a new phase of the year. Just like us, Aki (earth in Ojibwe), and all its inhabitants, is preparing itself to get ready for winter. Gardens are giving their final gifts, leaves are falling, animals are changing colour, and the beautiful harvest moon provides extra light so we can prepare to move into a colder, restful season. It’s a season of preparation of what’s to come.

Fall Equinox also leads into why we recognize September 30 as Orange Shirt Day, which has now been declared as the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, as the time of year when Indigenous children were taken forcibly from their families to Residential Schools.
Next week is our third annual Truth and Reconciliation Week where special guests will join us to share their stories and knowledge on Residential Schools, treaties, anti-racism, intergenerational trauma, and healing.

As the College will be closed on September 30, staff and students are invited to wear orange on Wednesday, September 29.

Check out the Truth and Reconciliation Week 2021 Schedule

September 16, 2021

Red River College’s third annual Truth and Reconciliation Week, September 27 – October 1, 2021, is dedicated to deepening our understanding of Canada’s history, Indigenous cultures, and sparking a conversation around Truth and Reconciliation.

During the week, you will hear from Indigenous voices, engage in the conversation, as well as participate in some interactive activities. Some of the themes we will be touching on this year include anti-racism, Every Child Matters, the Canadian Residential School System, intergenerational trauma, healing, and strength.

Join the TRC Week Microsoft Teams site to easily access events and resources, receive notifications on and join the conversation! Live events will be hosted via Microsoft Teams for ease of use.

There will be a few different channels for you to explore, including channels hosted by the Student’s Association, the Academic Success Centre, and the Library.

To join, use code: z3znhh2

Material Handling 4.0 Information Session

September 10, 2021

Learn more about this new FREE six-week pilot program for Indigenous students so you can start a job in warehousing and distribution! Get job-ready skills, receive a micro-credential and employment services, plus a two-week paid placement. The program builds on the successful training model used by Mohawk College’s City School in Hamilton, Ont.

Material Handling 4.0 Information Session
NEW DATE ADDED: Tuesday, September 21, 2021 – 1:00 pm

No need to register. Click to join to launch WebEx virtual event.
Event password:  RRC2021

For program details, visit