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CIIT Expanding Minds at 1st Annual Anishinaabek Youth Ambassadors Tech Camp

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CIIT Expanding Minds at 1st Annual Anishinaabek Youth Ambassadors Tech Camp

Canada NewsWire

M'CHIGEENG, ON, Aug. 1, 2018 /CNW/ - The Centre for Indigenous Innovation and Technology (CIIT) gains momentum with first pilot learning initiative - the Anishinaabek Youth Ambassadors Tech Camp at Kenjgewin Teg Campus, M'Chigeeng First Nation. 

CIIT Logo (CNW Group/Centre for Indigenous Innovation and Technology)

CIIT was launched earlier this year in response to the underrepresentation of Indigenous peoples in the technology and innovation sectors in Canada. Resources are focused on creating programming that provides excellence in technology training, increasing Indigenous representation in the tech industry in Canada, and promotes problem solving using technology while applying an Indigenous lens.

The Anishinaabek Youth Ambassadors Tech Camp ran from July 23 - 28 and was aimed to engage youth aged 15-24 interested in exploring opportunities in technology and/or entrepreneurial endeavours. Guest speakers included motivational speaker and life coach Gene Jamieson (of Six Nations of the Grand River); philanthropist, model and actor Ashley Callingbull (Cree First Nations); Project Manager with the Council of Indigenous Students, Rhode Thomas (Six Nations of the Grand River territory); serial entrepreneur and president of Troon Technologies, Jeff Neasmith; Founder and Executive Director of CIIT, Jarret Leaman (Anishinaabe from Magnetawan First Nation).

Hands-on digital learning experiences were provided by Kids Code Jeunesse, a Canadian not for profit organization dedicated to empowering children and youth, teachers and parents. The two-day workshop presented experiential learning models, introduction to code and micro:bits. Through KCJ's initiatives, and thanks to a $6 million dollar commitment from the Federal Government's CanCode program, the organization is committed to inspiring learners, thinkers, and creators across Canada. Learn more at kidscodejeunesse.org.

"It was a pleasure engaging with youth on the issues affecting their experiences in education. We look forward to further engaging with other institutes such as Kenjgewin Teg, to both gain greater insights into some of their concerns and highlight many of their success stories, says Rhode Thomas, Founder, Council of Indigenous Students.

CIIT was engaged by Kenjgewin Teg as a part of their ongoing mission to inspire students to find their gifts to further succeed in the world. Kenjgewin Teg is dedicated to lifelong learning by providing an Anishinaabemowin community based approach to education, training and business support services and opportunities.

The digital learning outcomes of the week focused on skill discovery and the cross over between technology training and employment as the students prepare for their co-op work placements set to begin in the community on August 1. Youth Ambassadors now have been introduced to a suite of  learning resources available for free online so they can continue to further their personal development and learning.

"I think the program was fun and interesting. It was inspiring to hear the speeches from successful women, and to learn about the different jobs out there," commented 22 year-old Trish, a Youth Ambassador from the program.

SOURCE Centre for Indigenous Innovation and Technology

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