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Engineering program targets Indigenous youth

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Engineering program targets Indigenous youth
(from left to right) U of S professor Sean Maw, Indigenous Peoples initiatives co-ordinator Matthew Dunn, and engineering undergraduate Connor Theoret. (Photo: University of Saskatchewan)

The University of Saskatchewan (U of S) has been awarded nearly $150,000 in funding from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council to teach Indigenous youth about engineering principles.

The new program, entitled Ancestral Engineering Design Activities, focuses on the engineering principles behind Indigenous technology and designs, such as the forces acting on an animal trap or the design principles behind choosing the materials for a canoe.

“Our ultimate goal is to inspire Indigenous youth to consider the possibilities of careers in engineering,” said U of S College of Engineering professor Sean Maw, who holds the Jerry G. Huff Chair in Innovative Teaching. “The knowledge that their ancestors were excellent designers can instill pride and curiosity. It will also engender respect and appreciation from non-Indigenous people.”

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