Partnership Expands on Commitment to the Needs of Métis Communities

Watch CTV News story about signing. The Métis Nation of Ontario and the Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM) co-hosted an Aboriginal Workshop on May 25-27, 2011 in Sudbury, Ontario.

This workshop, NOSM’s third Aboriginal forum, was a follow-up to the Follow Your Dreams workshop held in Wauzhushk Onigum in June 2003 and the Keeping the Vision workshop held at Fort William First Nation in August of 2006. The purpose of the workshop was to inform Aboriginal peoples of the progress made by the School on recommendations received during the previous two Aboriginal workshops and to provide a forum for continuing dialogue between Aboriginal peoples and NOSM.

On May 25, at the opening of the three-day workshop, the MNO and NOSM signed a Collaboration Agreement which will allow the two parties to work more closely together. This shared commitment is focused on providing education which is responsive to the Métis people and communities of Northern Ontario, and on highlighting their complementary resources and objectives with respect to research, education, and expertise.

The MNO and NOSM have a range of common goals, approaches, and needs. Both the School and the MNO are actively involved and engaged in addressing the needs of their communities. A number of possible areas for NOSM and the MNO to collaborate include, but are not limited to:

  • Identifying opportunities for beneficial collaboration in the development of new medical courses, academic programs, and innovative research initiatives.
  • Actively recruiting potential Métis medical students, and improving the provision of medical programming that is culturally and linguistically appropriate.
  • Developing communications intended to increase the visibility and success of the Métis in medicine in Ontario.
  • Increasing Métis participation in and access to current and future NOSM programs and services.
  • Increasing real and meaningful Métis input to NOSM policy development.

“From day one MNO has supported NOSM. I remember when it was just a dream,” explained MNO President Gary Lipinski. “The Métis Nation of Ontario is entering into this collaborative agreement with the Northern Ontario School of Medicine to facilitate more Métis students pursuing medical careers in the North. Having more students graduate in the North will dramatically increase the potential of them returning to their communities, where their skills as doctors and nurses are very much needed.”

“A significant component of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine’s social accountability mandate is to build and cultivate relationships with Aboriginal communities across Northern Ontario, and to facilitate common goals,” said Dr. Roger Strasser, NOSM Dean. “This Collaboration Agreement between the School and the Métis Nation of Ontario will allow us to pursue opportunities that maximize the positive impact our organizations are having in the North,” he said.