Fostering a Lifelong Love of Learning

Nora Madill cannot say enough good things about her time at the First Nations University of Canada.

The 38-year-old is not only an alumni from the First Nations University of Canada, with a degree in Indian education, she is also a constable with the Royal Canadian Mountain Police.

Nora confesses that even though she loved teaching and going out to the communities in her third year at FNUniv, she realized that teaching wasn’t something she had a strong desire to do.

Right before Nora was set to graduate, she applied to the RCMP and was accepted.

“I wanted to work with aboriginal people and communities so that the people could have someone to relate to as an aboriginal RCMP officer,” says Nora.

Nora loves being an officer, but says learning and academics has its own draws and benefits.

She says she has FNUniv to thank for her lifelong love of learning and she never knew she could enjoy learning as much as she did. She says the relationships and lifelong teachings she learned during her time at FNUniv really drove home for Nora the importance of always learning and being connected to her culture and community.

She says during her time at the university she was even fortunate to work in the library and as a teaching assistant for two Cree classes and two Indian Studies classes. She says that was one of the highlights of her life.

“The degree was secondary, with everything that I learned while I was there,” says Nora.

The professors were also one of Nora’s absolute favorite things during her time there. She would make sure to take specific classes just to learn from those inspirational teachers. Solomon Ratt and Darren Okemaysim are two of the many she says helped her throughout school.

“I wish that everyone could have the experience that I did going to university,” says Nora. “The love that I have for that place and for all the people in it is based on my experience. It would be fantastic if everyone could experience the same thing as they go through their schooling.”

by Raven Sage Brass