Photo courtesy University of Saskatchewan
The bowl on the campus of the University of Saskatchewan will be alive with Indigenous song and dance, as the annual graduation pow wow takes place today.
The event has been an event at the U of S for over thirty years. It has taken place during spring convocation for the last seven years, which honours graduating First Nations, Metis and Inuit students from the U of S and Saskatchewan high schools.
Pow Wow Chair, Graham Joseph, says it’s an opportunity for graduates to be honoured for their accomplishments.
Joseph says the pow wow will not only honour graduates from the university, but high school students who may be coming to the U of S as a student in the fall.
“We have students from about 28 different schools from across the province coming to the pow wow, both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal, so the pow wow is an opportunity for them to see what can be accomplished through education, and it’s an important cultural event,” says Joseph. “It’s something they can learn from and help them celebrate Aboriginal culture.”
Joseph says the pow wow is very inclusive, open to the public and encourages people to celebrate, along with the faculty and students. He says the celebration is also an important educational opportunity.
More than 1,800 children from 35 schools across the province have registered to attend the pow wow, and will have a chance to attend workshops held in tipis and a Red River cart.
The pow wow will feature dancers, drummers and singers of all ages from across North America, who will be taking part in competitions throughout the day.
Joseph says there will be dancers from as young as tiny tots up to adults and some new dancers to the pow wow circuit taking part.
The event kicked off at 10:00 am, with a grand entry for high school graduates and the U of S students, who will be honoured at 12:30 pm.