WSL Indigenous Grad Banner

Indigenous graduation

Celebrating the Class of 2022

Congratulations — you did it!

Writing Symbols Lodge is honoured to recognize and celebrate Indigenous students' hard work and achievements who are graduating this spring. 

The journey to this milestone can be demanding. We are so proud of you for persevering and overcoming these obstacles to make it to this extraordinary day. 

To our new graduates, we're so very proud to have you as part of the Writing Symbols Lodge community and watch your continued growth.


A message from the President

Graduands,

I am delighted to celebrate you on this landmark day in your journey of learning. Today, you become a graduate of the University of Calgary and join our proud alumni family of over 200,000 changemakers, innovators and thought leaders. Going forward on your individual paths, remember the pride you are feeling today at everything you have accomplished. By now, you have sparked the thrill of discovery, gained new skills and learned more about your own strengths. Seeking and sharing knowledge doesn’t end at Convocation, and I am looking forward to seeing how you will apply your university education to the wider world.

Thank you to the Writing Symbols Lodge team for providing this meaningful Indigenous Graduation event. As we all listen to Elder Rod Hunter’s Honour Song during the ceremony, take some time to reflect on the spirit of this piece. It is a tribute to UCalgary graduates, their families and communities — and also a reminder that we are all interconnected. With a feeling of collective pride, we celebrate the accomplishments of the Class of 2022 and anticipate your contributions toward a brighter future.

Congratulations!   

Dr. Ed McCauley

President and Vice-Chancellor

Dr. Ed McCauley
Michelle Fournie

Michelle Fournie

Postdegree diploma/certificate, Werklund School of Education

kamotáán - Blackfoot word/teaching meaning to persevere and come out of a storm as shared by Ahstanskiaki Sandra Manfeathers, my teacher and friend in every respect.

Chantai Minet

Chantai Minet

M.Sc Educational Psychology, Specialization in Counselling Psychology, Werklund School of Education

i gu.aa yax̲ x’wán - have strength and courage
(Tlingit)

Marianne Wolf Leg

Marianne Wolf Leg

Master of Education, Werklund School of Education

This educational journey is tough. Use all the effort you used to get into school to maneuver obstacles as they arise. Keep focused on your goal. You walk with the strength of your ancestors. This is your journey, the final accomplishment is all your work and intelligence. You have chosen to become the best version of your self. My journey has been a difficult one. My journey has challenged me in all aspects of my life. In the end, I did it. So can you.

Louise Doore

Louise Doore

Master of Social Work, Faculty of Social Work

Oki ! My success comes from family & friends who have continuously provided the support I needed but mostly I give gratitude to Creator, especially at my challenging times. The foundation that you create will determine where your destiny lies and it is the spiritual piece that is most important in achieving your dreams because dreams and determination is what creates your journey toward success. Life is short make the best of it be true to yourself & honor your higher power ! Live Love Laugh !!!

Lucas Hale

Lucas Hale

Bachelor of Arts, International Indigenous Studies, Faculty of Arts

I came to UCalgary to earn a degree, but what I walked away with was so much more. I owe a debt of gratitude to each and every instructor, peer, and staff member who supported me along the way and inspired me to accomplish great things. “We are people who matter, yes, it's true; now let's show the world what people who matter can do.” - Wab Kinew

Byron Jackson

Byron Jackson

Masters of Business Administration, Haskayne School of Business

With Discipline, Belief, And The Right Knowledge, We Become The Best We Can Be!

Wendy Henshaw

Wendy Henshaw

Bachelor of Social Work, Faculty of Social Work

Dreams do not have an expiry date. It's up to you, and only you, to create the life you want for yourself. Don't give up.

Cherise Lightning

Cherise Lightning

Bachelor of Arts, Sociology, Faculty of Arts

We as Indigenous people are more than just a number, more than just a statistic, more than just a people. We are the seeds of our ancestors, the fruit to our children, the life of those who never made it. Make something out of it
 

Jaret Smith

Jaret Smith

Master of Business Administration, Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Haskayne School of Business

To future students, go after what you want. Life is too short to waste your time wondering "What if". Even if you fail in going after what you want, fail only means first attempt in learning. My favorite quote is "Dreams don't work unless you do". To my family, thank you for the support through my undergrad and graduate degrees. I would not be in this position without you. My love and appreciation towards you guys is endless and I cannot thank you enough for the support.


 

Emilee Bews

Emilee Bews

Bachelor of Arts, English, Faculty of Arts

Future graduates: be unapologetic, be passionate, and be brave.
Thank you to my family, friends, and mentors who have encouraged me to be all those things and more as I begin this next chapter.

 

Tara Spring Chief

Tara Spring Chief

Bachelor of Social Work, Faculty of Social Work

One of my favorite quotes comes from Maya Angelou "My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.”
I hope to be a change maker in any possible capacity for the Indigenous populations and make a difference.
 

Francine Bearhat (Charlie)

Francine Bearhat (Charlie)

Masters of Education - Diploma, Werklund School of Education

Iikakimaat! If you can dream it, you can achieve it! You are who your ancestors prayed for! Bring honour to your kaahsinnooniiks/ancestors, your pookaiks/future generations and kiistoo/yourself! <3

Ruby Tailfeathers

Ruby Tailfeathers

MEd Diploma (Interdisciplinary Studies), Werklund School of Education

Oki. Mokakit Iikakimaat! "Try hard and persevere." This is what our Blackfoot elders tell us. I am grateful for all of my family, instructors and fellow graduates. Congrats to all of you!

 

Krystal Bernier

Krystal Bernier

Bachelor of Education - Social Studies Specialization, Werklund School of Education

Throughout my degree, Rita Pearson was such an inspiration. She says that "every child needs a champion; a person who never gives up on them, who understands the power of connection and insists they be the best they can possibly be!" As I move forward in my teaching career I am focused on being a champion for all my students and having a positive impact on their lives and their future, so that one day they might leave words of inspiration on a university wall.

Karla Lamouche

Karla Lamouche

Bachelor of Social Work, Faculty of Social Work

We are living our ancestors wildest dreams! We coming for everything our ancestors were denied. Congrats everyone!!

Morgan Hughes

Morgan Hughes

Bachelor of Science, Ecology major, Faculty of Science

Thank you very much to my friends and family for all of your support throughout my undergraduate degree. I am excited to begin the next chapter of my life and look forward to working towards becoming a veterinarian.

Lori Scalplock

Lori Scalplock

Postdegree diploma/certificate, Werklund School of Education

I am grateful to receive my Graduate Diploma and my wish is to inspire our young Indigenous people to pursue their post-secondary education. I believe knowledge is power, pursue your goals and dreams.

Hailey Barrell

Hailey Barrell

BSc (Hons) - Biochemistry, Faculty of Science

You cannot see the stars without the night.

Tiadora Nienhuysen

Tiadora Nienhuysen

Master of Education, Specialization: School & Applied Child Psychology, Werklund School of Education

Congratulations to all graduates! Meegwetch/Thank you to MFNERC, University of Calgary, and our cohort.

Megan Shott

Megan Shott

Bachelor of Social Work, Faculty of Social Work

My late Grandfather encouraged me to get the white man's education, which I can proudly say I have now. I know this parchment paper will open doors for me but looking back I wish I knew sooner that it is possible to live in two worlds; and incorporate the traditional teachings into my education journey. I look forward to seeing the shift in paradigm as our Indigenous youth attain post secondary and leading the next generation remembering the importance of natural laws, language, and Ceremony.
 

Juli Binning

Juli Binning

Interdisciplinary Studies - Indigenous Education, Werklund School of Education

Walk into the room like Creator sent you there.

Matthew Topham

Matthew Topham

Bachelor of Science, Biological Sciences, Faculty of cience

The current state of healthcare for Indigenous peoples in Canada requires desperate attention, as many people have minimal access to treatment, are socioeconomically and educationally disadvantaged, and simply mistreated within the system. With pursuits in Medicine and research in technological innovation, I hope to live as a leader of change; to fight for improvement within the healthcare system for Indigenous peoples and those that are left behind.

Amber Clark

Amber Clark

Master of Public Policy, School of Public Policy

Miigwech Gzhe Mnidoo
nogoding miinwaa gii bi-giizhigak
miinwaa Gizis wgii bi-mnaasged.

Kelvin Braun

Kelvin Braun

Bachelor of Arts, Communications and Media Studies, Faculty of Arts

Take control of your life. Do what makes you happy and be who makes you happy. Live through empathy and understanding, and make an impact no matter how small it may seem.

Donna Soldier

Donna Soldier

Graduate diploma, Educational research, Werklund School of Education

Find your passion! Education is our future, your never too old to learn new things.
 

...and the rest of the Class of 2022