Saskatchewan Polytechnic celebrates Indigenous cultures with new mural
- EFN Staff | November 05, 2016
Mural painted by Calgary artist Anna Krop helps to create a sense of belonging for Indigenous students
Moose Jaw – The new mural at the Saskatchewan Polytechnic Moose Jaw campus is another aspect of the institution’s indigenization efforts, which are developed towards reconciliation and long-term positive change.
“The Moose Jaw Aboriginal Student Achievement Plan committee set out with a theme of ‘gathering’ because we felt that Sask Polytech has really become a place where indigenous individuals come together and are supported by the community they are a part of,” said Jason Seright, director of Aboriginal Strategy.
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“The mural project aligns with our strategic initiatives to increase the participation and success of Indigenous learners,” added Seright. “It also aligns with our Aboriginal Student Achievement Plan, which outlines a need to ensure our Indigenous students feel like they belong on our campuses and are valued members of our community.”
Enrolment for Indigenous students at the Polytech increased 31 per cent since 2011-12. Sask Polytech now has 3,700 Indigenous students making up more than 18 per cent of the total student population.
The mural, painted by Calgary artist Anna Krop, reflects the notion of “walking with the spirit.” The mural was a collaborative process with the artist and Moose Jaw Aboriginal Student Achievement Plan committee.
“It is a vision of gathering and belonging that is reflected through the rich heritage of the Indigenous culture and the positive spirit of new learners,” says Krop. “It is a flowing story transforming from the past to the present. It is an example of all cultures coming together.”
Found within the artwork are images of dancers, symbolic animals, landscapes and historic scenery – all of which are elements of what Krop calls “Indigenous inspiration and reflection.”