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October 24, 2002 Native youth conference at Concordia



Tom Jackson performs at the Oscar Peterson Concert Hall.

Photo by Ali Shaker

The Kahnawake Survival School organized a benefit at the Oscar Peterson Concert Hall on Feb. 27 featuring singer, actor and philanthropist Tom Jackson. He was joined by the traditional singing societies from Kane-satake and Kahnawake.

A two-day conference entitled The Gathering: A Native Youth Conference Exploring Career and Life Opportunities was held Feb. 27 and 28 at Kahnawake and Concordia.

It was a joint undertaking between the Concordia-based Aboriginal Chantier of the SSHRC-funded Community Uni- versity Research Alliance (CURA) on the Social Economy, and the Kahnawake Survival School, which is the high school of the Kahnawake community.

The first day focused on tradition and culture, and was held at the School, while the second was held at Concordia and focused on the social economy and personal and social development. 100 to 150 students attended.

The conference developed from the work of Concordia’s Tom O’Connell and Bob Oppenheimer, who have been researching economic development, specifically the career and educational plans of aboriginal youth.

They presented their findings in a game-show format, with two teams trying to predict the research results, and the students enjoyed it.

Other speakers at the conference included the Kahnawake Survival School principal, Tewenenhnitatschon Delisle, and, from Concordia, Provost Jack Lightstone, JMSB Dean Jerry Tomberlin and Professor Daniel Salée, who is chair of the Aboriginal Chantier.