Western to celebrate Indigenous culture with inaugural Indigenous Awareness Week

Western University will celebrate its inaugural Indigenous Awareness Week from March 16-21 in celebration of local Indigenous culture, art, and scholarship.

The week-long event, facilitated by Indigenous Services, which is part of Western’s Student Development Centre, seeks to enhance the presence and promote the achievements of Indigenous students, faculty, staff, and alumni who are generating integral contributions academically at Western, and to the larger London community.

All events are free and open to the community.

Indigenous Awareness Week begins Monday, March 16 with a Sunrise Ceremony conducted by Elders Dan Smoke (Seneca) and Mary Lou Smoke (Anishinaabe) at 7 a.m. outside of Weldon Library. An Opening Celebration and Address will follow in the Mustang Lounge in the University Community Centre (UCC) at 11 a.m. Both events will set the cultural, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual tone for the week.

Highlights for the week include an Indigenous spoken word and hip hop performance with Tanaya Winder, Frank Waln and The Sampson Brothers; an Indigenous film showcase in the McKellar Room co-hosted by ImagineNative Film Festival; a public presentation of the Public Humanities initiative Stories about Illness and Health with speakers Brent Stonefish and Danielle Alcock; and a number of artistic displays, panel presentations, and symposia held at the UCC and the Indigenous Services Centre, which is located in Western Student Services Building.

For a comprehensive list of program scheduling, please visit http://indigenousweek.uwo.ca/

Indigenous Awareness Week will close on Saturday, March 21 with a graduate student symposium and the 9th Annual First Nations Students Association’s (FNSA) Pow Wow in the Mustang Lounge, a cultural exclamation point to what will be an exciting inaugural celebration of Indigenous presence at Western.

For more information, please contact Candace Brunette, Coordinator, Indigenous Services, at cbrune2@uwo.ca or at 519-661-2111, ext. 88278.

MEDIA CONTACT: Jeff Renaud, Senior Media Relations Officer, 519-661-2111, ext. 85165, jrenaud9@uwo.ca, @jeffrenaud99

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