SFU welcomes Indigenous faculty and staff
Lyana Patrick joined the Faculty of Health Sciences in 2019 as a professor in Indigenous health. Patrick, who is Dakelh from the Stellat’en First Nation, and Acadian/Scottish, will co-develop an Indigenous health curriculum to serve as a foundation for students to learn about the history and contemporary experiences of Indigenous peoples.
Education professor Sara Davidson, a Haida/settler scholar, joined SFU in December 2020. She wants to improve schooling experiences for Indigenous children by collaborating with, and learning from, Indigenous communities and Indigenous students.
In April 2021, SFU’s Beedie School of Business appointed Alexia McKinnon as director of Indigenous business programs. An alumnus of SFU Beedie’s Executive MBA in Indigenous Business Leadership (EMBA IBL) program, and a citizen of the Champagne and Aishihik nations, McKinnon has a wealth of experience in Indigenous education and governance.
Kaylena Ryan, from the Secwepemc, Gitxsan and Tsimshian nations, joined the Indigenous Student Centre in October 2020 as an Indigenous student life coordinator. She has since become associate director, charged with fostering a culturally rich experience for Indigenous students’ success.
Nicole Taylor-Sterritt, of Gitxsan and European heritage, joined SFU Ceremonies and Events in November 2020 as manager of Indigenous protocols. Taylor-Sterritt is integrating Indigenous protocols into university-wide events, a process that includes strengthening relationships with Indigenous elders and honouring their knowledge and experience.
Jessica La Rochelle (Lhkwemiya), who is Stó:lō, Okanagan, and Trinidadian, joined SFU as director, Indigenous student recruitment and admissions in August 2020. She served as acting director of the Indigenous Student Centre from January to September 2021 and rejoining as director in Jan 2022.
Dorothy Cucw-la7 Christian joined the Department of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies in July 2021 as associate director, Indigenous policy and pedagogy. Christian is from the Secwepemc-Syilx Nations in B.C.’s interior. She was previously associate director of Indigenous initiatives with SFU’s Centre for Educational Excellence. She brings a wealth of cultural, professional and academic experience to her new role.
Rebecca Sangwais is of Cree and Saulteaux descent from the Ochapowace First Nation in the Treaty Four territory in Saskatchewan. She joined SFU in October 2019 as the Indigenous student recruitment coordinator. She assists Indigenous students with the application process and connects them with appropriate student support services.