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OWA and Queen’s inspire up-and-coming Aboriginal engineers


July 17, 2013
By Anthony Capkun

July 17, 2013 – The Ontario Waterpower Association (OWA) says it is pleased to support the efforts of Aboriginal Access to Engineering at Queen’s University’s by assisting in the redevelopment of a children’s educational resource entitled “What Engineers Do”.

This activity book focuses on linking Aboriginal Traditional Knowledge (ATK) and different types of engineering careers and opportunities.

“Educating Aboriginal youth is of significant importance to the waterpower industry and our association,” said Paul Norris, OWA president. “Our collaborative efforts with Queen’s University have produced a great resource that highlights future opportunities for youth, which will encourage them to become more interested in science, math, engineering and technology.”

“It is very important to encourage Aboriginal participation in engineering because Aboriginal people are significantly underrepresented in the field,” explained Dr. Mark Green, Queen’s University professor of civil engineering and a member of the Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte. “Engineers are needed for Aboriginal communities to more-effectively realize economic and technological development. More Aboriginal engineers will help with capacity building for these communities.”

Through a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between OWA and Queen’s, OWA has contributed by providing advice on the inclusion of waterpower, and in translating the publication into Ojibwe and Oji-Cree. This publication will be made available across Ontario and Canada, and is available in English, French and Mohawk; copies can be ordered at director@aboriginalaccess.ca from Queen’s University.

OWA says it remains focused on building capacity among Aboriginal communities and industry education. Later this month, it is hosting a two-day workshop in partnership with the Chiefs of Ontario focused on industry and First Nation relationships.