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Government of Canada Fulfills Commitment to Help Students at First Nations University of Canada Finish Academic Year

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REGINA, SASKATCHEWAN--(Marketwire - April 29, 2010) - Chuck Strahl, Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Metis and Non-Status Indians, today announced the Government of Canada will provide $3 million to the University of Regina for expenses related to programming for students attending the First Nations University of Canada.

This funding is conditional upon provincial funding as outlined in the Memorandum of Understanding of March 23, 2010 between the First Nations University of Canada, the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations, the University of Regina, and the Province of Saskatchewan.

This investment fulfills Canada's commitment to ensure that students are able to complete their academic year which ends August 31, 2010.

"Our priority has always been to support First Nation learners," said Minister Strahl. "This funding will fulfill our commitment to provide the students of First Nations University of Canada with the assistance they need to complete their current school year, which ends August 31, 2010."

"I am very pleased that this funding, combined with the efforts of all our partners, will help ensure that First Nations University of Canada students graduate from the institution of their choice with the skills needed to enter the labour market and fully share in Canada's economic prosperity," said Rob Clarke, Member of Parliament for Desnethe-Missinippi-Churchill River.

The University of Regina recently submitted an Indian Studies Support Program proposal for $3 million to Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, on behalf of First Nations University of Canada. Departmental officials have since reviewed the proposal and determined it meets the program's criteria.

Indian and Northern Affairs Canada will work closely with the University of Regina to finalize details and ensure the timely distribution of funding. Departmental officials will also continue to work closely with their provincial counterparts to find practical solutions that will help students and faculty in the weeks ahead.

As a recipient of funding under the Indian Studies Support Program, the University of Regina will be required to provide the Department with financial reports, as well as a statistical report detailing the courses offered and completion rates of students in those courses.

Indian and Northern Affairs Canada currently funds more than 60 institutions through the Indian Studies Support Program, a proposal-driven program designed to support the development and delivery of college and university level courses for First Nation and Inuit students.

This release is also available on the Internet at www.ainc-inac.gc.ca

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