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Dean, Indigenous Education and Engagement

Job Information
Author pmnationtalk
Date October 28, 2019
Type Full Time
Company Humber College
Location Etobicoke, ON
Category Education/Administrative
Client Leaders International
Contact Information
For more information on the Aboriginal Resource Centre, please visit and for more information on Humber College, please visit

Dean, Indigenous Education and Engagement

The Organization Humber College

The Humber Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning, commonly known as Humber College, was founded in 1967. Fostering a learning environment where students, staff and faculty experience a true sense of community, Humber College has more than 27,000 full-time students across three campuses namely, Humber North campus, Lakeshore campus, and Humber Orangeville campus.

In addition to Humber College’s many programs and departments, it is home to The Barrett Centre for Technology Innovation, located at Humber’s North Campus. It is home to many applied research projects with diverse partners across multiple sectors. It builds on Humber’s expertise in areas such as automation, robotics, systems integration, user experience testing, applied research and work-integrated learning. Some of the key features include interactive technology zones, digital media studios, cutting-edge prototyping and makerspaces, open concept gathering spaces and demonstration areas for new products and technologies. The building design is contemporary and contains many Indigenous elements including a prominent thirty-foot Indigenous cultural marker, visible both inside and outside of the building that serves as a beacon to the campus and an element of education for all students.

Humber College is also home to the Humber Arboretum consisting of botanical gardens and natural areas surrounding the Humber River. This unique site is home to the Carolinian bioregion, the most diverse ecosystem in Canada, and boasts over 1,700 species of plants and animals. The Humber Arboretum covers approximately 250 acres (101 ha) of the West Humber River Valley. The Aboriginal Resource Center is engaged in many elements of the Arboretum, participating in and lead plant restoration projects, leading educational opportunities, and welcoming hundreds of students annually to the Camp Choice program serving Indigenous youth in Grades 6-8.

Supporting Reconciliation

Humber College is situated within the traditional territories of the Ojibwe Anishinabe people. Acknowledging their significant historical connection to the land, water and resources, Humber College is committed to increasing awareness, knowledge and respect of the distinct contributions of the First Peoples of Canada. With this commitment in mind, Humber College became a signatory to the Indigenous Education Protocol launched in 2014 by Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan). The protocol consists of seven principles to support reconciliation and aligns closely with the recommendations issued by Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission in 2015 and serves as a framework in developing Humber’s strategies related to Indigenous Education.

Along with 65+ institutions across the country, Humber College has committed to:

  • Make Indigenous education a priority
  • Ensure governance structures recognize and respect Indigenous peoples
  • Include intellectual and cultural traditions of Indigenous peoples in curriculum and learning approaches
  • Increase understanding and reciprocity among Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples
  • Increase the number of Indigenous employees, including Indigenous senior administrators
  • Establish Indigenous-centered holistic services and learning environments
  • Build relationships and be accountable to Indigenous communities in support of self-determination

Aboriginal Resource Centre

Supporting approximately 700 self-identified Indigenous students, the Humber College Aboriginal Resource Centre (ARC) works in partnership with regional Indigenous communities to ensure Indigenous students are supported and connected to their learning environment – academically, culturally, and socially. There is a dedicated Centre at both the North and Lakeshore campuses.

The ARC assists Indigenous students in making the transition and adjustment to the challenges of college life while creating an awareness and appreciation of Indigenous culture and history in the greater campus community.

For more information on the Aboriginal Resource Centre, please visit and for more information on Humber College, please visit


The Position Dean, Indigenous Education and Engagement

Reporting to the Vice President, Students and Institutional Planning, the Dean, Indigenous Education and Engagement provides leadership, strategic planning and culturally fluent, context-sensitive advisement to both the senior Leadership Team and the wider College community. Bridging relationships internally across the institution and externally with important communities and organizations, the Dean is responsible for overseeing the Aboriginal Resource Centre team and maintaining a warm, welcoming environment for students, staff, faculty and guests. She/he fosters a supportive, culturally-safe environment and inspires innovative, specialized support services. The Dean proactively develops programs, secures funding, engages with internal / external stakeholders, sets priorities and implements strategic initiatives.

The Dean provides both day-to-day and forward-focused leadership for indigenization, decolonized practices, Indigenous education programming, and teaching-learning stewardship to create a university community that proudly and respectfully serves Indigenous students, employees, and First Nations, Inuit, and Métis communities.

The Dean ensures that development of various programs and support services are respectful and responsive to the needs of all Indigenous, First Nations, Inuit, Metis and non-status learners. Additional responsibilities include the creation of professional development opportunities, cultural awareness building for the entire college community, including staff, students, faculty and administrators.

As the Dean, Indigenous Education and Engagement, the incumbent will be responsible for the following key activities:

  • Develops, implements, and manages the Indigenous Student Services unit, overseeing a team that offers diverse services to support Indigenous and non-Indigenous students, staff, and faculty;
  • Builds genuine engagement and relationships with the First Nations on whose territories the college campuses are located;
  • Establishes and maintains strong and positive relationships with all Indigenous communities within the college region;
  • Furthers Indigenous programming and partnerships with faculties and departments;
  • In collaboration with college units and departments, advances services for Indigenous learners at all Humber campuses;
  • Provides strategic leadership enhancing student recruitment, engagement, and academic success;
  • Represents the college and advises college leadership on national, provincial, and local initiatives relating to Indigenous education;

The Position Dean, Indigenous Education and Engagement

As the Dean, Indigenous Education and Engagement, the incumbent will be responsible for the following key activities (cont.)

  • Provides senior leadership on the actions, reporting, and activities as they relate to the College’s Indigenous Education Plan;
  • Fosters and promotes plans and actions related to indigenization and decolonizing practices in support of the Truth and Reconciliation Calls-to-Action and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples;
  • Advises College leadership on indigenizing curriculum, Indigenous knowledge and ways of knowing, and relevant research;
  • Promotes the role of Elders in all aspects of academic planning, teaching and learning, administration, and student and employee support;
  • Leads the creation of plans, practices, and actions that ensure a welcoming and supportive environment for Indigenous peoples;
  • Secure funding (from public or private entities) for programming priorities as well as adhering to the criteria outlined in the Postsecondary Education Fund for Indigenous Learners (PEFAL); and,
  • Acts as the key contact for the Indigenous Education Council (IEC), the Indigenous Education Office (IOE) at MTCU and the Indigenous Peoples Education Circle (IPEC) and ensures sustained engagement from Indigenous community members in a way that is both culturally competent and professional.


  • A Master’s degree in Indigenous studies, education or a closely related field at the time of appointment, or the equivalent in professional experience
  • A minimum of 10 years’ experience within a post-secondary environment in support of Indigenous education, student success, and/or community engagement
  • Self-identifies as an Indigenous/Aboriginal person with lived experience and expertise in Indigenous knowledges, epistemologies, methodologies, histories, traditions and/or languages
  • Excellent leadership, teambuilding, interpersonal, organizational and management skills including demonstrated ability to work collegially in a diverse, inclusive and unionized environment
  • Excellent relationship building skills with an ability to facilitate sensitive conversations that raise consciousness for diverse and impactful issues related to Indigenous peoples
  • Ability to inspire, motivate, support and empower others through authentic listening, engagement and humility
  • Along with in-depth knowledge of the post-secondary education environment, the ideal candidate will bring outstanding communication skills, strong analytical and critical thinking skills
  • Direct experience operationalizing strategic plans, inspiring innovative thinking and creating lasting solutions for tactical problems or initiatives
  • Successful experience building collaborative relationships between Indigenous communities and institutions
  • Knowledge of the Truth and Reconciliation recommendations as well as Federal and Provincial Reports, programs and grant opportunities that impact the Post-secondary sector
  • Project management expertise with demonstrated ability to analyze, plan, deliver and report on multiple projects in an effective and timely manner

The Application

Humber College will begin reviewing applications in December 2019; the posting will continue until the position is filled. We welcome applicants who are of First Nations, Inuit, Métis, or other Indigenous ancestry.

To apply in confidence, email 1) a letter expressing interest in this particular position, giving brief examples of experience and proposed projects; 2) a curriculum vitae; and 3) names of three (3) references with contact information. Submit applications to the retained search firm: Leaders International Executive Search via email to

For more information or to apply for this opportunity, please contact Mr. Mike Eagar, Consultant at 613-788-8254 ext. 102 or Laurie Sterritt, Partner at 778-838-4569

Humber College is committed to fair and accessible employment practices. Upon request, suitable accommodations are available under the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disability Act (AODA) to applicants invited to an interview.

The City Toronto

The name Toronto is derived from a Mohawk word “tkaronto,” which means “where there are trees standing in the water.” It is the traditional territory of many nations including the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishnabeg, the Chippewa, the Haudenosaunee, and the Wendat peoples, and is now home to many diverse First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples, along with other Indigenous groups that represent this valued community.

Toronto has a population of 2.8 million people making it the largest city in Canada, the fourth-largest city in North America, one of the top 25 cities globally for its quality of living, and the best place to live in Canada, according to MoneySense. Toronto welcomes 40 million tourists a year. It supports a lively art and culture scene that includes museums, galleries, performing art organizations, and many festivals (including the Indigenous Art Festival). Toronto is recognized as one of the most diverse and multi-cultural cities in the world.

Toronto is the home to Ontario’s Parliament Buildings as well as multiple post-secondary institutions – Humber College, George Brown College, the University of Toronto (the largest university in Canada), Ryerson University, York University and OCAD University. Toronto schools reflect the diversity of the population. The four school boards – English public, French public, English Roman Catholic and French Roman Catholic – provide many options, including French immersion programs. There are also several private, secular and religious, schools and boarding schools.

The Royal Ontario Museum is an iconic building boasting the Michael Lee-Chin Crystal inspired by the ROM’s extensive gem and mineral collection, the design was quickly dubbed the ‘crystal’ because of its crystalline shape. The Royal Ontario Museum has a unique 100-year history of conducting ground-breaking research in all areas of art, culture, and nature.

Just offshore from the city centre are the Toronto Islands known as ‘Menecing’, meaning “On the Island” in the Ojibwa language. The islands are home to parklands and the Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. The island community is considered the largest urban car-free community in North America.

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