The purpose of this blog is to showcase how a number of courses and fields of study within the Liberal Studies program at Capilano can be integrated to understand a common theme.
The theme I have chosen is First Nations Culture in British Columbia, and cultural compassion through education.
My goal is to improve my understanding of the cultural history of British Columbia and to apply that history to better appreciate current First Nations issues. One example of such issues is the ongoing case of
missing and murdered aboriginal women. I was born
and raised in British Columbia yet I now feel that there were gaps in the teaching of British Columbia history. In elementary and secondary school,
in history, social studies, and geography courses, I now realize that indigenous peoples were not well represented. The cultural
history of the First Nations in BC was only very briefly covered. If I were to summarize what I learned during those high-school days, I would indicate I learned about the gold rush and the building of a railway. Post secondary education provided far more extensive representation of the vast cultural mosaic of British Columbia, including its First People.
As I move forward in the Liberal Studies program, I have become
more cognizant of my freedom to personally expand my education and to focus on subject matter that interests me. While studying predominantly in the humanities and social sciences I have had the
opportunity to integrate learning aspects of indigenous and First Nations culture into the general theme of each course.
As my studies have been concentrated in the humanities and social sciences departments, I have realized that each course offers unique benefits. In most cases, I have had the opportunity to integrate aspects of First Nations Culture into my own research while satisfying the assignment guidelines. Throughout my tutorial process, I have had the opportunity to work with four incredible people. I would like to acknowledge each for their support and contribution to this project! Reg Johanson, thank you for inspiring me to include my own poetry in this blog, and for your continuous words of wisdom. Sandra Seekins, thank you for helping me narrow my web of ideas into an achievable goal, and thank you for always letting me tie in First Nations themes into my art history projects. Bob Muckle, thank you for your confidence in me, your incredible knowledge and insight into First Nations culture, and of course thank you for your book: The First Nations of British Columbia: an Anthropological overview. Third Edition. Finally, Sally Walters, thank you so very much for all of your patience, support, and assistance with the most challenging and technical portion of this process I truly appreciate it!
This is my mind map from a tutorial with Sandra, it represents the very beginning of Cultural Compassion in Canada.
Photo Credit: Lyndsey Gavin