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SFU Beedie appoints Alexia McKinnon to lead Indigenous business programs
Simon Fraser University’s Beedie School of Business has appointed Alexia McKinnon as its new director, 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 First Nation, McKinnon has a wealth of experience of Indigenous education and governance.
McKinnon joins the school from the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, where she was associate director, Indigenous leadership and management, and cultural leadership co-lead faculty. Her prior roles include: Indigenous community projects lead, and personal learning advisor at The Banff Centre; cultural centre coordinator with the Champagne and Aishihik First Nation, where she raised funds to build a new cultural centre; and special assistant to the premier of the Yukon Government.
“I am truly excited by this opportunity to drive transformational change through Indigenous education at SFU Beedie,” says McKinnon. “As an alumnus of the EMBA IBL program, I can attest to its life-changing value, and it will be an honour to build on the program’s success as we move forward.”
The appointment coincides with other significant developments within SFU Beedie’s EMBA IBL program and plans to build on the school’s world-leading Indigenous business education offering. Following a detailed review, the school has introduced a new Indigenous Governance Committee to oversee and direct the program, chaired by John Borrows, Canada research chair in Indigenous law at the University of Victoria. The course design of the EMBA IBL has also been updated, to ensure greater Indigenous presence and content in every classroom, and, in response to feedback from students, the program has been accelerated to be completed in two years – not three as before – bringing it in line with SFU Beedie’s other EMBA program.
“Incorporating Indigenous business perspectives and content across all our programs is a very important part of our mission as a school, and these developments reflect our dedication to ensuring our decision-making is guided by Indigenous leadership,” says Carolyn Egri, SFU Beedie dean pro tem. “We are delighted to welcome Alexia to SFU Beedie, and I look forward to working with her and driving progress on reimagining business education through an Indigenous lens.”