NAN Education Institute Unveils new Brand - Firedog Communications
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NAN Education Institute unveils new name and logo and Mobile Trades Trailer to provide specialized skills and trades training to Indigenous communities.

THUNDER BAY, ON, January 30, 2018 – Today, Oshki-Pimache-O-Win Education Institute unveiled a new name and brand identity at the Nishnawbe Aski Nation Chiefs Winter Assembly. Renamed Oshki-Pimache-O-Win The Wenjack Education Institute, the new logo encompasses a tribute to the memory of Chanie “Charlie” Wenjack. Back in October of 2016, Nishnawbe Aski Nation announced the intent to rename on the 50th anniversary of Wenjack’s tragic death.


12- year-old Chanie Wenjack froze to death on October 22, 1966 after fleeing the Cecilia Jeffrey Indian Residential School in Northwestern Ontario. In 2016, Chanie’s story was broadcast to the world through a multi-media project titled “The Secret Path”, which was led by the late Gord Downie. It included a solo album, graphic novel and animated film. Chanie’s short life has become an iconic symbol of the Residential School era in Canada.  His story is one of the resilience of indigenous people and their cultural survival and renaissance.  His story has also inspired Canada to do better in these days of Truth and Reconciliation.


“The renaming of the Institute and new logo will honour the memory of Chanie Wenjack and the people who attended Indian Residential Schools. The name is a lasting legacy for all Residential School survivors across NAN territory and recognition of the multi-generational impacts their experiences have had on families, communities and nations. Oshki-Pimache-O-Win The Wenjack Education Institute is a symbol of new beginnings through indigenous-centered education and training,” says Rosie Mosquito, Executive Director.


To mark new beginnings, Oshki-Pimache-O-Win, The Wenjack Education Institute also unveiled a new $3-million mobile trades trailer today. The unit creates over 1,800 square feet of classroom and lab space that can accommodate 16 students. The lab is equipped for instruction in a variety of skilled trades, such as welding, heavy equipment, machining, plumbing, electrical, millwright and carpentry. The unit also has wireless internet and satellite.


“The Mobile Trades Trailer is a high-tech skilled trades laboratory on wheels that can be deployed anywhere to provide trades training opportunities for those who might not otherwise be able to access specialized skills training. This new unit recognizes and respects learners’ strong ties to community and culture, and supports the need to deliver relevant education and training opportunities where our people live. Oshki-Pimache-O-Win The Wenjack Education Institute can now bring trades training learning opportunities closer to First Nation communities across the NAN territory,” says Gordon Kakegamic, Innovations and Training Coordinator.


Founded in 1996, Oshki-Pimache-O-Win The Wenjack Education Institute has provided new beginnings through its education and training programs where about 250 students have graduated with postsecondary credentials and over 400 students other programs.   With a high success rate in the range of 80%, many students have gained meaningful careers in their communities and region.


“The new Mobile Trades Trailer further removes barriers that individuals in our communities currently face such as financial, geographical and cultural challenges.  Increasing the capacity for skilled labour in our communities sets a positive foundation for personal and socio-economic growth.  This new learning tool brings education directly to our people and provides a sense of security as students learn and master skills close to home,” continues Mosquito.


Oshki-Pimache-O-Win The Wenjack Education Institute is now in the process of developing a Deployment Plan to determine where the Mobile Trades Trailer will travel. Additional funding will be required to ensure program success.