The Mi'kmaq-Wolastoqey Centre opened its doors at UNB in 1981, celebrating the graduation of the first class in the Bachelor of Education program for First Nations students. From the beginning, MWC has welcomed First Nations students from all parts of the Atlantic region — from Conne River, NF, to Maria, QC, from Eskasoni, NS, to Tobique, NB, and Lennox Island, PEI.
MWC and UNB have taken their lead from the First Nations communities. The need for First Nations teachers became urgent in the 1970's, and UNB responded by creating the BEd for First Nations students, in 1977. When the first graduates began teaching in the early 1980's, their expertise helped First Nations communities take control of their own schools.
MWC assisted in this phase as well, with educational planning and professional development for schools and school committees. The centre was founded by Professor W. D. Hamilton, who served as director until 1992, when he was succeeded by Robert M. Leavitt until June 2006, and currently Dr. Lynda Doige.
By 1990, First Nations communities had identified a number of other areas in which First Nations professionals were urgently needed—especially in administration, social services, health professions, research, and environment.
MWC introduced the Bridging Year program to help prepare the growing number of First Nations students interested in pursuing a university degree outside the field of Education. New initiatives at MWC include a new mentorship program for Bridging Year students, and our newest program, the First Nations Governance and Leadership Certificate.
Mi'kmaq-Wolastoqey Centre's Journey
|Listening to First Nations|
|Hearing First Nations' Voice|
|First Nations Speaking Through MWC|