I CHOSE Kenjgewin Teg
Based on M’Chigeeng First Nation on Manitoulin Island, Kenjgewin Teg (Kenjgewin/Kenj) implements cultural, outdoor and land-based learning into its programs to provide students with a holistic approach to education.
Pre-trades fundamentals student
I was here at Kenj finishing my high school, and just last year I received my Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD). That was a big achievement for me personally. I had no thoughts about going to college, but after being here and achieving my OSSD, I decided that I wanted to stay and further my education. I’m more of hands-on type of person, so that’s why I’m studying the pre-trades fundamentals. It’s an introduction to all the trades that are out there. In our first semester, we covered electrical, carpentry, math, and auto mechanic.
Kenj is a place of opportunities. It has opened more than several doors for me and they’re very supportive, in my personal and academic life. It has a very open atmosphere, it’s very welcoming. You feel at home when you’re here, and that’s how I feel every time I walk through the main doors.
Decolonizing education student and board member
I first attended Kenjgewin to get my teacher certification. I was working in the Manitoulin area at the time and there was no way I could take a year or two off of work to attend a normal, mainstream teacher education program. Doing part-time just made sense. I didn’t want to go down to Kingston to get my degree, but at Kenjgewin I was able to get my Queen’s degree while living up here.
Now that I’m working on the island as an Education Manager in Whitefish River, I’m taking some of the development courses. Right now, I’m taking Decolonizing Education because a lot of people think of education as what they experienced. For many of us, Canadian history wasn’t taught in a true manner. There are a lot of Canadians, including Indigenous Peoples, who have learned a particular story. But, there is a true story that needs to be told. Part of that is learning to decolonize your own mind, start to learn who you are as an Anishinaabe or First Nations person. What I’m learning will help ensure we have the best program we can offer to our own students in Whitefish River.
Mondo Kinmagzian instructor
I was born and raised in Toronto, but my family is from here and I moved back to be closer to them. When I heard about the position at Kenjgewin Teg, its focus on holistic styles to teaching and learning really appealed to me. What that means for us is that we say, “don’t just come here to learn your studies, but learn about yourself and grow.” We ask our students and teachers to think about it three ways: what can you do for your mind, that’s your academics; what can you do for your emotions, that’s the cultural learning and checking in with our elders or counselors; and what can you do for your body, so staying active, being out on the land or participating in Indigenous games.
A lot of our learners let us know that they’ve tried a more western academic approach and for whatever reason it wasn’t for them. Then they came here, and it feels like a family. It’s not just about coming here and getting your degree or getting your credit and moving on. That’s what makes a big difference for our learners as well as our staff, because we feel like we’re making a difference and impacting lives.
Location & Contact
Interested in exploring the
Kenjgewin Teg campus?
Kenjgewin Teg Educational Institute
374 Hwy. #551
P.O. Box 328
M’Chigeeng, ON P0P 1G0