The CWSE (Prairie Region) team helped to create a 30-minute, professionally produced video (http://www.youtube.com/user/YouManitoba) that shows a wide range of options of how students can enter university science, engineering and other programs and succeed in these programs while being connected to an Indigenous support network. The video highlights Aboriginal women role models already enrolled at universities. An ongoing recruitment initiative administered by the University of Manitoba’s Office of the Vice-Provost (Students) helps ensure that copies of this video are distributed on memory sticks to First Nations communities where adequate internet access may be lacking.
The CWSE Prairie Program provides human resource and financial support to the Verna Kirkness Education Foundation to provide Aboriginal youth (working in pairs) with the opportunity to participate in science, engineering and health research with University of Manitoba professors and students. The Verna Kirkness program has grown from 8 youth in 2012, to 14 youth in 2013 to 34 youth in 2014.
Dr. Farenhorst and her collaborators have attracted $3-million in cash support to establish the CREATE H2O program on First Nations water and sanitation security. The program combines research training on water and wastewater management with Indigenous theory, law and methodological skills development training. Of the 20 trainees to date, 60% are women and 30% are Indigenous. Much of the groundwork to establish the H2O CREATE program started with our collaboration with Sapotawayak Cree Nation, as well as learning from First Nations youth and women about the importance of water.