Limited Term Appointment – Elder-in-Residence
The Elder position helps students reflect on: the power imbalances that have so impacted Indigenous communities; the cultural wisdom needed for healing Indigenous communities; and the need for decolonizing Canadian settlers and institutions that are informed by a colonial worldview.
The Elder furthers the recruitment and retention of Indigenous students, staff, and faculty while also providing many educational opportunities for the broader campus, the university as a whole, and the surrounding communities.
The Elder, following traditional values, conducting ceremonies when appropriate, and incorporating and sharing Indigenous knowledge, provides leadership and teachings to faculty, staff, and students when the opportunities arise.
The Elder contributes Indigenous perspectives on colonialism and traditional worldviews in two Indigenous Social Work courses (SK 311 and SK 422) through a series of guest lectures and teachings. This also extends to programs outside of Social Work at the Brantford campus as the Elder engages with faculty and staff to incorporate Indigenous knowledge across the campus.
The Elder provides holistic student support and mentoring to Indigenous students, faculty, and staff, and helps to ensure that Indigenous students, staff, and faculty feel supported, understood, and encouraged.
The Elder provides input to the Program Coordinators of Indigenous Studies and the Bachelor of Social Work Program, as well as to the Office of Indigenous Initiatives, in the conceptualization and implementation of programming and strategic planning for the continued development of a more Indigenized campus.
1. Program Duties
Consults on and delivers a series of teachings in two Bachelor of Social Work courses (SK 311 and SK 422), or as indicated in the “Letter of Offer” from the Senior
Ensures that Indigenous knowledge is a core component throughout the course offerings in Indigenous Studies and the Bachelor of Social Work programs; Participates in Program Coordinating Committees of both Indigenous Studies and Bachelor of Social Work, in order to provide strategic planning advice on the development of both programs; Provides guidance to academic programs, faculties, and departments at Laurier’s Brantford campus on incorporating Indigenous knowledge, cultures, ways of knowing, and histories throughout their programs; Delivers guest lectures, performs ceremonies, and openings/closings, as requested, throughout the Brantford campus for various programs and departments’ events and classes; Advises the Office of Indigenous Initiatives on the development of holistic student support programming, including event and program offerings; and Acts as a resource for faculty and staff at the Brantford campus on the integration of Indigenous knowledge into their courses and programs.
2. Student Duties
Provides holistic student support and counselling to Indigenous students accessing mental and spiritual health support at the Indigenous Student Centre. This could include referrals to both on- and off-campus resources, managing confidentiality, etc.; Identify students in crisis, either personal or academic, and advise on available support services on- or off-campus and works in partnership with the Office of Indigenous Initiatives to support Indigenous students’ success; Delivers workshops and ceremonies for students’ that contribute to the integration of Indigenous knowledge across campus; and Acts as a resource for all students, faculty, and staff at the Brantford campus on Indigenous knowledge.
3. Administrative Duties
Meets on a regular basis with the Deans of Social Work, Liberal Arts, and Human & Social Sciences, Indigenous Studies Program Coordinator, Bachelor of Social Work Associate Dean, Senior Advisor: Indigenous Initiatives, and Manager, Indigenous Initiatives; Sits on Laurier’s Indigenous Education Council; Complies with Human Resources, Diversity & Equity Office, Health & Safety, and Financial Services departments; Completes an annual activity report that outlines work undertaken.
4. Community Duties
Builds relationships between Laurier’s Indigenous Studies and Bachelor of Social Work programs, the Office of Indigenous Initiatives, and Wilfrid Laurier University and local Indigenous communities, including on- and off-
reserve service organizations, local knowledge keepers, etc.; and Advises Laurier’s Brantford campus key decision makers on potential partnerships with local Indigenous communities, organizations, and peoples. Organizational Status: The Elder-in-Residence is a faculty member of Indigenous Studies within the Faculty of Liberal Arts, and of the Bachelor of Social Work Program within the Faculty of Social Work. This position is considered a term contract position. Supervision: The Elder is housed in the Faculty of Liberal Arts and works with the Dean of the Faculty of Liberal Arts, the Indigenous Studies Program Coordinator and the Bachelor of Social Work Associate Dean. The Elder will be housed in the Indigenous Student Centre on the Brantford campus, and, therefore, will also work closely with the Manager, Indigenous Initiatives and Senior Advisor: Indigenous Initiatives.
Duties as identified in your ‘Letter of Offer’ (delivery of teachings in assigned courses, membership to committees) signed by the Senior Advisor: Indigenous Initiatives; Involved in consultations with course directors around their participation in assigned courses and creation of course outlines; Participation in the strategic planning and evaluation of the Indigenous Studies and Bachelor of Social Work programs, and Indigenous Student Centre programming; Participation in Indigenous Studies, Bachelor of Social Work, and Indigenous Initiatives team and program coordinating meetings; Participates in convocation for Indigenous Studies and Bachelor of Social Work students; Assists in community committees as requested and up to identified % acceptable by university; Utilizes and submits acceptable university forms; and Reconciles expenses and receipts according to university policy.
Education, Experience and Certificates Graduate degree is preferred; and Three years professional teaching experience, including volunteering within Indigenous communities. Indigenous Knowledge Articulates Indigenous knowledge – ways of knowing such as intergenerational learning, experiential learning, learning through story, songs, dance and ceremony, revealed knowledge and reflection; Honours Indigenous vision of community includes all life forms as relatives; Articulates the concepts of wholeness and engaging the spiritual, emotional, intellect and physical dimensions; and Demonstrates Indigenous values and process (sharing, dialogue, celebration, ceremony, generosity, and ecology).
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities
Ability to operate autonomously and in a directed team effort; Ability to travel and maintain a schedule that requires occasional evening and weekend work; Ability to plan, set, and meet deadlines; Exceptional interpersonal skills (creative, diplomatic, inter-culturally sensitive, patient, tactful etc.); Good computer skills, able to work with MS Word, MS Excel, and technical aptitude to learn programs unique to university; and Familiarity with or willingness to learn about university services.
Teaching experience; Experience in traditional teaching and knowledge; Previous working experience in an Indigenous context; Previous evidence of skills related to duties identified; and Previous experience working with students.
Ability to develop rapport with undergraduate and graduate students; Strong interpersonal and communication skills; Ability to act as a faculty and staff consultant on student guidance and behaviour management; Skills to work with post secondary students, Indigenous and non-Indigenous; and Compassionate conflict resolution skills are an asset.
The majority of work is performed indoors in a temperature regulated environment.
The Social Work courses to which the Elder contributes are delivered annually. It is expected that the Elder will participate in these courses and will stay on location with students and faculty during scheduled class time. The Elder will be housed in the Indigenous Student Centre, spending time with and engaging Indigenous and Non-Indigenous students, staff, and faculty from across the campus.
In addition to their work on campus, the Elder should also build relationships at many levels of the university, and continue to maintain good relationships with Indigenous communities both on-reserve, and in Brantford and the surrounding areas.
Applicants should submit a resume, a cover letter highlighting their teaching and community-based experience, and the names and contact information for three professional or academic references.
Applications must be submitted electronically to Kandice Baptiste,
Application Due Date: July 27th, 2017 at 11:59PM.
Please Note : Wilfrid Laurier University’s Strategic Academic Plan prioritizes building capacity in Indigenous education and commits to the Indigenization of our campuses through Indigenous programming, which it seeks to expand under the leadership of Indigenous students, faculty and staff. Applicants should self-identify through the covering letter to their application including their familial and/or community connections which position them as First Nations, Inuit or Métis people. Any questions related to self-identification can be directed in confidence to the Dean of Liberal Arts, Dr. Heidi Northwood (firstname.lastname@example.org), or to the Senior Advisor Indigenous Initiatives, Jean Becker (email@example.com).
If you require an accessible version of the job add, please contact Kandice Baptiste (Manager, Indigenous Initiatives) at firstname.lastname@example.org or 519-756-8228 ext. 5573.
Wilfrid Laurier University is committed to employment equity and values diversity. We welcome applications from qualified individuals of all genders and sexual orientations, persons with disabilities, Aboriginal persons, and persons of a visible minority. Although Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority, all qualified candidates, including international candidates, are encouraged to apply. In accordance with the requirements of
Human Resources and Skills Development Canada and Immigration Canada the successful applicant will be required to prove they are legally able to work in Canada.
Further information on the equity policy can be found at https://www.wlu.ca/page.php?grp_id=2465&p=10545