June 2009

Summer 2009 is proving to be a busy season for the Labrador Institute. We have several upcoming projects, meetings, and research initiatives.

Dalhousie School of Social Work
will be visiting Happy Valley-Goose Bay in mid-June to discuss their ongoing CURA project entitled Pathways to Resilience.

Dr. David Dibbon, Dean of the Faculty of Education at MUN, will be in Happy Valley-Goose Bay in mid-June to meet with Innu and Inuit leaders to discuss teacher education.

Several researchers and research teams will be passing through Happy Valley-Goose Bay this summer as they make their way to other areas of the Big Land to conduct various studies. Among those is Elisabeth Dalsbø, a graduate student at the University of Tromsø in northern Norway. She will be spending a month in Natuashish to conduct research for her Master’s project in Indigenous Studies.

Our staff is continuing to grow! In April, Jennifer Butler was appointed to the Program Coordinator Position. This position was previously filled by Martha MacDonald who is now the Associate Director (Education and Programming). We will soon have two summer students and two grad students working with us. Our summer students will be working on our collection, as well as the SERNNoCA project. Our two graduate students, will be working on projects related to Labrador. One will be training the Sheshatshiu Band Council staff in various computer courses, while the other will be working on climate change research.

Keith Chaulk is continuing his work on the Lower Churchill Environmental Assessment Project.

Martha MacDonald and Derek Wilton – along with their team – are continuing to work on a children's book looking at Inuit mythology and scientific explanations of creation and land formation. Martha and Jennifer are also working on a book entitled Very Rough Country which is a collection of papers and presentations from the Labrador Explorations Symposium that took place in North West River in 2005.

The LI was recently successful on two funding proposals. The first was submitted jointly between the LI and the Nunatsiavut Government and will be used to enhance research facilities and infrastructure in the communities of North West River and Nain. This funding (approximately $2.5 million) will allow for greater research capacity in Labrador. The second funding proposal was submitted to IPY and will be used to upgrade facilities in Happy Valley-Goose Bay. This project is valued at approximately $58,000.

The Labrador Institute is continuing with various course offerings. Ted Lomond was recently in Happy Valley-Goose Bay to instruct the Lifelong Learning courses in Effective Leadership and Project Management.

Dr. Doug Wharram has returned to Happy Valley-Goose Bay again this summer to teach an intersession course in Linguistics.

Damián Castro is also teaching in intersession; his is an Anthropology course called Aboriginal Peoples of North America.