Transition and Transformation
Towards a Labrador Campus
The need: University education, by and for the North
Across Canada, there have been repeated calls by First Nations, Inuit, and Métis governments, communities, and leaders for place-based and accessible university education offered in the North, reflecting Northern places, peoples, cultures, and histories, and working in partnership with Indigenous peoples.
At the first meeting of the Labrador Campus Strategic Task Force in 2018, Elder Jean Crane highlighted that a Labrador Campus offers the opportunity and privilege to imagine new pathways and new Institution-to-Indigenous relationships that support Innu and Inuit self-determination, sovereignty, and resurgence. We take this responsibility to heart: access to high-quality higher education in one’s home territory, reflective of one’s cultures, lands, and ancestors is a fundamental right.
"A Prayer for the Ancestors and the Land," as shared by Elder Jean Crane with the Labrador Campus Strategic Task Force during our first meeting in Happy Valley-Goose Bay in July 2018, to ground us in our shared responsibilities to the lands, ancestors, and future generations of Labrador, and to show the importance of our work to healing and to reconciliation.
Why a Labrador Campus?
With over 40 years of research, education, outreach, and relationships, the Labrador Institute of Memorial University is one of the few university-based units in Canada dedicated solely to the needs and priorities of the North. Further, with Memorial University’s commitment to an Indigenization Strategy and the new singular generational partnership with Nunavut Arctic College and related North-to-North learning opportunities, Memorial University is uniquely situated to effectively and rapidly develop a full degree-granting Campus in Labrador, with accompanying infrastructure and resources.
Memorial University and the Labrador Institute are working in partnership with the Nunatsiavut Government, the NunatuKavut Community Council, the Innu Nation, the Town of Happy Valley-Goose Bay, and other local, national, and international partners to meet the university’s special obligations to the people of Newfoundland and Labrador, and become leaders in Indigenous- and Northern-led research, education, and public outreach in the country.
David Sorensen, September 2019
Dr. Ashlee Cunsolo, March 2020
David Sorensen, July 2020
Jennifer Batten, August 2020