By: Mercedes Stemm, Program Assistant, Indigenous Health in Medicine, Dalhousie BSc in Neuroscience/Indigenous Studies Student
The Indigenous Health in Medicine Program seeks to increase representation of Indigenous students in medicine through recruitment, community collaboration and partnerships. It also advises the dean of medicine, to fulfill the social accountability mandate to the maritime Indigenous community. This program was established in October 2016 by the Dalhousie Faculty of Medicine within the Global Health Office to provide support to the Faculty, students, and broader Indigenous community. We aim to improve recruitment and retention of Indigenous students into medicine, although we’ve recently started to branch out to other health programs for our Indigenous students interested in health.
Below I will speak about some of the many aspects and initiatives of our program, although we are currently re-branding our program. Our program shifts with community and is always looking for more ways to engage with communities. We’re currently looking to re-name our program and will be accepting submissions. Get involved with our program and help us re-name it! Follow the link below to our re-branding form.
Our program focuses on:
- Developing specific admissions pathways to ensure equity for all students of Indigenous – descent
- Creating mentorship and outreach opportunities
- Pursuing opportunities for curriculum development
- Strengthening relationships with Indigenous communities
- Leading the Indigenous health advisory committee
Indigenous Health Advisory Committee:
The role of the Advisory Committee is to work in collaboration with the Indigenous communities of the Atlantic and help them fulfil their health needs through the mandates of the faculties of Medicine, Health, and Dentistry. We seek to increase the representation of Indigenous students (Inuit, Innu, Mi’kmaq, Maliseet, and other Indigenous groups) in the Atlantic by addressing the Truth and Reconciliation Recommendations and engaging with Indigenous community representatives about health-related initiatives at Dalhousie. The Advisory Committee consists of four representatives from the Faculty of Medicine with one of these being from New Brunswick (DMNB), one representative from the Faculty of Dentistry, three representatives from the Faculty of Health, the Indigenous Student Advisor at Dalhousie University, a student representative from the Indigenous Health Interest Group (IHIG), the program manager (and assistant) of Indigenous Health in Medicine, the Faculty of Medicine Admissions, and Associate Dean Research (Health, Dentistry, Medicine).
Financial Support – Johnson Scholarship Foundation (JSF):
JSF Scholarship: As a part of the Johnson Scholarship Foundation (2016‐2021) funding, Dalhousie designed a scholarship to increase the enrollment of Indigenous Atlantic Canadians and African Nova Scotian students who are engaged in the study of Health, Dentistry and Medicine. Applicants may apply more than once for this program; funding will be subject to availability and application review. The total amount for the Scholarships will be a minimum value of $5,000 per student per year.
JSF Entrance Bursary: As a part of the Johnson Scholarship Foundation (2016‐2021) funding, Dalhousie designed a bursary to support Indigenous students (First Nation, Inuit, and Métis) and African Nova Scotians applying to health programs requiring entrance exams (i.e., medicine and dentistry). The goal of the program is to reduce or eliminate the financial burden associated with application requirements. Bursaries will be awarded as a reimbursement of cost. Applicants may apply more than once for this program; funding will be subject to availability and application review.
JSF Conference Bursary: As a part of the Johnson Scholarship Foundation (2016-2021) funding the Dalhousie’s Indigenous and African Nova Scotia Conference bursary program is designed as an initiative for Indigenous students (First Nation, Inuit, and Métis) and African Nova Scotians at Dalhousie University. The goal of the program is to enable students to attend extracurricular programing such as conferences as part of their professional development (does not include courses).
* It’s important to note that this bursary will also be awarded for online conferences due to COVID-19 restrictions and guidelines.