Selkirk College, Attn: Elizabeth Ferguson
301 Frank Beinder Way, Castlegar BC, V1N 4L3, Canada
My english is name is Elizabeth Ferguson and my spirit name is Ahgaabeeksaki, Many Birds Woman. My roots are Dene Tha from Chateh Alberta and I have lived in Blackfoot territory off and on since 2001. I am proud to be mother, scholar, teacher, advocate, sister, friend. I love the mountains, cool freshwater, trees and four- leggeds. I have lived deep in the heart of the Kootenays for 35 years.
Rural living can be challenging and I have had many occupations: waitress, car control clerk, first aid attendant, payroll clerk, and then, in 1998 after being laid off yet another position, I began Grade 8 Adult Basic Education at Selkirk College in Rosemont. I continued to complete two years university transfer courses at Castlegar campus and in 2001, I moved to attend the University of Lethbridge where I completed a BA and MA in Native American Studies.
I returned to the Kooteneys developing programs and services for non profits. I was offered a teaching position at Nicola Valley Institute of Technology (NVIT) and taught a variety of courses on campus and in remote areas on reserve for two years. Although I loved NVIT, I returned to the University of Lethbridge and for the next 10 years managed FNMI Student Services developing programs, events and supports for our First Nation, Métis and Inuit students. I also taught the occasional course.
I have recently retired from full-time work and am delighted to come back to Selkirk College as an guest lecturer. It is my intention is to inspire students by sharing the knowledge of our Indigenous storytellers, elders, artists, and scientists acknowledging the inherent right to practice and articulate the wisdom of our ancestors. I look forward to meeting you all.