Honouring Survivors - National Day for Truth and Reconciliation
Dear students, faculty, and staff,
As I near the end of my first month as President, I want to express my appreciation for everyone who contributes to making Acadia such a wonderful place in which to work and study. Together, we form a close-knit scholarly community that values and embraces diversity and inclusion.
You are invited to observe the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation in the coming days. We will pay our solemn tribute to the lost children and Survivors of residential schools, as well as their families and communities. This year's theme, "Honouring Survivors," is an important reminder of our shared responsibility to foster healing, understanding, and reconciliation with the painful history endured by Indigenous Peoples in Canada.
The National Day for Truth and Reconciliation also serves as a reminder that there is much work ahead at Acadia University, which is located on the traditional and unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq Nation. While progress has been made toward decolonization, many—including myself—seek swifter, more meaningful change. Our continuous commitment is crucial in cultivating an inclusive campus environment and in meeting our commitments to reconciliation with Indigenous peoples.
I am deeply grateful for the exceptional Indigenous advisors and student leaders at Acadia who consistently offer invaluable wisdom, guidance, and support on our path toward decolonization. These campus community leaders have collaborated to develop a schedule of events and opportunities to guide our efforts and reflections on the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation and beyond.
Our partnership with Glooscap First Nations is one of mutual respect, trust, and shared goals. Under their leadership, we strive to create an increasingly culturally responsive learning environment for all students. Integrating Indigenous knowledge systems into our curriculum and diversifying our faculty empowers students to become responsible global citizens equipped to face an increasingly complex world.
This is work we do together. Thank you for your commitment and care.
Jeffrey J. Hennessy, PhD (he, him, his)
President and Vice-Chancellor