Adults in Waskaganish now have a shiny new learning environment, after the opening of the Waskaganish Training and Development Centre June 19, 2018.
Representatives from Cree Human Resources Development and the Cree Nation Government as well as local officials, residents, and the primary tenant of the centre – the Cree School Board – were on hand to celebrate the official opening of the centre with a ribbon cutting ceremony.
“By opening this building, we are demonstrating our commitment to our people,” said Deputy Grand Chief Mandy Gull. “By opening this building, we are demonstrating our commitment to the belief that investing in our people is the key to the future health and prosperity of our communities and our Nation. By opening this building, we are demonstrating our commitment to the notion that education and training is what will prepare our people to take on the awesome task of realizing the Cree vision of becoming ‘masters of our own destiny’.”
The centre features high ceilings, wood beams, clean architectural lines, new equipment, and cultural décor, along with a vibrant office space in the same theme. There is a student lounge, four classrooms, two workshops and ample space for study.
“Our young people will be able to learn things here that will benefit their future,” said former Waskaganish Chief, and former Cree School Board chairperson, Gordon Blackned, who spoke at the request of current Waskaganish Chief Darlene Cheechoo. Blackned was instrumental in preparing the vision for the new centre.
Students who reside in Waskaganish will have the opportunity to enroll in upgrading classes – Social-Vocational Instruction and Preparation for Vocational Training – in September, and the following courses over the next 12 months:
- Trucking Class III
- Computer Support
- Busing Class II
- Small Mechanics
“We are so pleased that Waskaganish will now have such positive learning environment for our students,” said Sabtuan Adult Education Services Director Nian Matoush. “We look forward to offering a relevant curriculum in its classrooms and workshops.”