The Anishinabek Educational Institute’s (AEI) main campus sits just outside North Bay in the Nipissing First Nation. The building has four spokes, which point in the four directions and converge in a central hub with windows, skylights and a fireplace. The Fort William campus is near Thunder Bay, and the Munsee-Delaware campus is in Muncey. Both offer on-campus and community-based programs. Classes start with a morning circle, where students can add items to the shared sacred bundle. The morning circle includes a prayer for the community, a prayer for the water and a smudging with sweetgrass. Students are encouraged to introduce themselves in their native languages and include ceremonial practices that are important to their community. Traditional clothing such as ribbon skirts is also encouraged.
With a student body of about 40 per year, classes are intimate and instructors spend individual time with students. Each program incorporates Indigenous knowledge and cultural traditions. Classes are set up to best suit course material; the nursing classroom has a mock hospital room with hospital beds and mannequins. While many of AEI’s programs are accredited through other Ontario colleges, AEI is working on its own accreditation to expand course offerings in child care and mental health studies, and hopes to offer degree programs in the near future.
|Size of school||Tuition (diploma)||Tuition (certificate)||Tuition (post-grad)||Residence offerings|
- Social Service Worker: Students learn how to engage in social work within a holistic and respectful framework. The methods work both on and off First Nations.
- Personal Support Worker Program: Gain the skills to provide emotional, social and spiritual support and care for clients.
- Binoojiingyag Kinoomaadwin—Early Childhood Education Program: Learn developmentally appropriate practices for teaching young children. Use the cultural elements of First Nations communities such as tradition and language.
- Binoojiingyag Kinoomaadwin—Early Childhood Education
- First Nations Child Welfare Advocate
- Native Community Worker
- Practical Nursing