George Brown College signs memorandum of understanding with Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation to support Indigenous learners

MCFN Chief Stacey Laforme and GBC Pres Gervan Fearon signing MOU

A new partnership between George Brown College and the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation (MCFN) will bring significant changes to our campuses, including a visible Indigenous presence through collaborative projects and new and progressive approaches to teaching, learning and curriculum while increasing support for Indigenous learners. 

On June 21 — National Indigenous Peoples Day — George Brown President Dr. Gervan Fearon, George Brown Provost Dr. Cory Ross, George Brown Indigenous Initiatives Director Audrey Rochette, and Chief Stacey Laforme, Gimaa, Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation (MCFN) came together to sign and celebrate a memorandum of understanding (MOU) at a ceremony at Waterfront Campus. The group, along with special guests and members of the George Brown Indigenous Initiatives team, also enjoyed a lunch at The Chefs' House prepared by culinary and hospitality students. 

"The Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation are the traditional land, treaty holders and ongoing caretakers of the land upon which our campuses are situated. We are honoured to collaborate with and learn from this community as we endeavour to build a culture of equity, reconciliation and belonging at George Brown," Fearon said. 

"With the MOU being signed today, we establish the framework for increased collaboration with our treaty partners, the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation. We also express and formalize our commitment to working collectively and in the spirit of reciprocity." 

As part of the three-year agreement, George Brown will increase support for Indigenous learners by providing more pathways to post-secondary education and delivering additional programming.  

"The agreement signifies a meaningful and intentional first step to building a relationship centred on trust, respect and innovation," Rochette said. "The MOU embodies layers of complex and visible changes for both partners." 

Adding the MCFN logo to campus building entrances and naming a space at George Brown's mass-timber building Limberlost Place are some short-term agreement components the college community will see in the next academic year. 

"I respect the work that is happening with George Brown College, and signing a relationship agreement based on mutual respect and friendship will allow us to have a positive impact and will be mutually beneficial," Laforme said. 

The MOU commitments align with George Brown's Indigenous Education Strategy and will enable the college to respond to several of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada's Calls to Action and advance the priorities in the CiCan Indigenous Education Protocol. 

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Photo: Chief Stacey Laforme and Dr. Gervan Fearon