On July 31, 2019, Cape Breton University (CBU) and Grenfell Campus, Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN) signed a Memorandum of Understanding that will see Grenfell Campus partnering with CBU to deliver a provincial version of CBU’s In.Business: A Mentorship Program for Indigenous Youth. First piloted in Nova Scotia by CBU in 2011, and continuing since Grenfell Campus will now see Newfoundland and Labrador have its own provincial program specifically for Indigenous high school students in their province.
”Students from Newfoundland and Labrador began to participate in the In.Business program in 2014 and to date, 25 students and mentors have taken part from Newfoundland and Labrador,” says Stephen Augustine, Associate Vice-President Indigenous Affairs and Unama’ki College at Cape Breton University. “Students need support, advice, and experience sharing in order to manage the challenging transition from high school to post-secondary. The In.Business program helps with that.”
The program gives students a feel for university campus life, an idea of how a business education can equip them to be successful in the future and builds meaningful connections with mentors. Practical information is also shared with students around budgeting, financial literacy, time management skills, public speaking skills, research skills and much more.
“More than 20% of Grenfell students are Indigenous,” said Jeff Keshen, Grenfell Campus’s vice-president. “The In.Business program is an excellent fit for our campus, and reflects our commitment to pursue meaningful indigenization. By bringing this program to campus, we are enhancing opportunities for Indigenous youth and strengthening our ties to Indigenous communities.”
In.Business links Indigenous youth in grades 10 to 12 with Indigenous business mentors who administer bi-weekly business-based “challenges” that are completed using social media and bring the two groups together twice a year for in-person conferences. In.Business was designed to teach high school students the career opportunities and types of work you can do with a business education, in hopes they will consider studying business at the post-secondary level.