Higher education in Nunavut

Higher education in Nunavut

Higher education in Nunavut allows residents of this Canadian Arctic territory access to specialized training provided at post-secondary institutions. There are some unique challenges faced by students wishing to pursue advanced training in Nunavut, a vast territory stretching north from Manitoba. It was split from the Northwest Territories in 1999, and covers one-fifth of Canada’s area.Cite web| url= http://laws.justice.gc.ca/en/showdoc/cs/N-28.6//20070517/en?command=searchadvanced&caller=AD&search_type=bool&shorttitle=Nunavut%20Act'&day=17&month=5&year=2007&search_domain=cs&showall=L&statuteyear=all&lengthannual=50&length=50 |title= Nunavut Act| author= Justice Canada |authorlink =Department of Justice (Canada) | year= 1993| accessdate= 2008-07-25] cite web|url=http://www.nunavutliteracy.ca/english/resource/reports/building/building.pdf |title=Building culture and community: Family and Community Literacy Partnerships in Canada’s North |accessdate=2008-07-25 |last=Crockatt |first=Kim |coauthors=Suzanne Smythe |format=PDF ] Given the expanse of the territory, it only had a population of 25,153 at the time of creation, and the communities are located throughout ice covered islands making transportation inconvenient.

There are no universities in Nunavut, but Nunavut Arctic College offers degrees in conjunction with Dalhousie University - Nunavut Nursing Program, McGill University - Nunavut Teacher Education, and the University of Victoria - Akitsiraq Law Program.cite web|url=http://www.unesco.org/iau/onlinedatabases/systems_data/ca13.rtf |title=Canada (Nunavut) - Education system |accessdate=2008-07-25 |format=RTF |publisher=IAU, World Higher Education Database (WHED) ] cite web|url=http://nac.nu.ca/files/Academic%20Calendar%202005-07%20ENG.pdf |title=A Brief Overview of Nunavut Arctic College (pg. 6) |accessdate=2008-07-25 |work=Nunavut Arctic College: Calendar of Courses |publisher=Nunavut Arctic College | format = PDF] Northerners can also receive training in both academic and vocational studies. Due to the isolation of many northern communities, the college recognizes that adult and higher education must be delivered in these remote communities and that the training be tailored to address ever changing needs of the Arctic inhabitants.


Although the territory of Nunavut was created in 1999 from land formerly in the Northwest Territories, Nunavut Arctic College (NAC) was created in 1995 through an Act of the Legislative Assembly implemented January 1, 1995, when Arctic College was split into Aurora College in the Northwest Territories and Nunavut Arctic College. The major campuses of Nunavut Arctic College are Nunatta Campus in Iqaluit on Baffin Island, Kivalliq Campus at Rankin Inlet, and Kitikmeot Campus at Cambridge Bay. The College has also established Learning Centres in twenty-four of the twenty-six communities on the territory.


Higher education in Nunavut is the responsibility of the Ministry of Education. Three main pieces of legislation govern post-secondary education in Nunavut:
*The Education Act, known as Bill 21, governs the education in Nunavut from Kindergarten through to adult learner. [ [http://www.gov.nu.ca/education/eng/pubdoc/Bill%2021%20Education%20Act%20_E-F_%20-%20introduction.pdf Government of Nunavut. "Fourth Session, Second Legislative Assembly, Government Bill, Bill 21, Education Act" retrieved July 23, 2008 ] ]
*The Nunavut Act is the federal act that essentially created Nunavut. It has jurisdiction over all public institutes including college. [ [http://pubs.aina.ucalgary.ca/arctic/Arctic51-2-191.pdf Fortier, M. and Jones, F. (?) "Engineering Public Service Excellence for Nunavut: The Nunavut Unified Human Resources Development Strategy" (page 191 - 195) Retrieved July 23, 2008] ]
*Public Colleges Act was created through an amendment to the previous Arctic College Act as a result of the creation of Aurora College and Nunavut Arctic College. [ [http://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=1ErZ8YOnd5UC&oi=fnd&pg=PA301&dq=Nunavut+Public+Colleges+Act+&ots=7WE9je0cTF&sig=bCgwn2N4cBE8229pnoUpcAWTYwU#PPA301,M1 Hilyer, G. (1997) "Higher Education in the Northwest Territories" "In" Higher Education in Canada: Different Systems, Different Perspectives (pages 301 - 323) Retrieved July 23, 2008] ]


For admissions into Nunavut Arctic college, students are required to meet the specific requirements for their chosen program. Programs are not offered at all campuses of Nunavut Arctic College, so interested students are required to submit an application directly to the campus or community centre with the course offering.cite web|url=http://nac.nu.ca/files/Academic%20Calendar%202005-07%20ENG.pdf |title=Policies, Procedures and Services (pg. 10) |accessdate=2008-07-25 |work=Nunavut Arctic College: Calendar of Courses |publisher=Nunavut Arctic College | format = PDF] International and Out of Province Canadians are required to submit applications before April first of each year, and only a limited number of seats are available to these students.

Training partnerships

Nunavut Arctic College has entered into training partnerships programs for variety community and funding agencies. These programs have aided northern residence in gaining skills needed for enhancing their positions within small business, government and non-governmental organizations. Customized certificates are created specifically for the needs of the community and the organization with the help of public and private sectors, some examples include: a Community Health Representative Program for the Government of Nunavut's Health and Social Service sector, a Community Lands Administration Certificate for the Nunavut Housing Corporation, and an Inuit Resource Management Certificate for the Nunavut Implementation Training Committee. The Director of Customized Training is a special unit based at the Kivalliq Campus located at Rankin Inlet.cite web|url=http://nac.nu.ca/files/Academic%20Calendar%202005-07%20ENG.pdf |title=Training Partnerships and Customized Training (pg. 8) |accessdate=2008-07-25 |work=Nunavut Arctic College: Calendar of Courses |publisher=Nunavut Arctic College | format = PDF]

Transfer agreements

Nunavut Arctic College is a member of the Alberta Council on Admissions and Transfer (ACAT); therefore, the college has formed formal transfer arrangements with Aurora College in the Northwest Territories and many Alberta institutions.cite web|url=http://nac.nu.ca/files/Academic%20Calendar%202005-07%20ENG.pdf |title=Transfer Credits (pg. 9) |accessdate=2008-07-25 |work=Nunavut Arctic College: Calendar of Courses |publisher=Nunavut Arctic College | format = PDF] Students are advised to refer to the Transfer Guide for information on course eligibility. The college has arranged bulk credit transfer for other Canadian universities including McGill University in Quebec, Royal Roads University in British Columbia, Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia, and the University of Manitoba in Manitoba.


Financial assistance is available to qualified students in Nunavut though: Human Resources and Social Development Canada (HRSDC), the Financial Assistance for Nunavut Students (FANS), and the various regional Inuit Organizations. A student is responsible to initiate the funding request.cite web|url=http://nac.nu.ca/files/Academic%20Calendar%202005-07%20ENG.pdf |title=Financial Assistance (pg. 11) |accessdate=2008-07-25 |work=Nunavut Arctic College: Calendar of Courses |publisher=Nunavut Arctic College | format = PDF]

Tuition fees are established by the Minister of Education. In the current (2005 - 2007) calendar, the tuition fees were set at $1000 per term for full time students, $200 per course for part time students and free for senior citizens (defined as a student over the age of sixty).

Future direction

Higher education in Nunavut is in the infancy stage. The Government of Nunavut recognized that higher education is critical for economic and intellectual development; therefore, a strategy was developed to address unique challenges and opportunities found in Canada's north.Government of Nunavut. (2007) Retrieved July 21, 2008, [http://www.gov.nu.ca/education/eng/pubdoc/English_ALS_FINAL.pdf Nunavut Adult Learning Strategy (page 21)] ISBN 1-55325-105-9] The Nunavut Adult Learning Strategy completed in March 2006, recommended a five year strategy to address the needs of the adult learner in Nunavut. This includes career training, literacy, Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit (traditional knowledge), and professional education. The report recommended the restructuring the Department of Education, changing how vocational and apprentice training is delivered, improve career guidance and development, and the creation of a mature student graduation certificate. Adult literacy is identified a key barrier for employment for Arctic inhabitants, as Nunavut is a region with jobs in skilled sectors like mining, fishing, tourism and government.

The strategy identified that advances post secondary training is required in Nunavut; however, the recommendation was made that Nunavut Arctic College continue to work with major Canadian universities to deliver specialized training. The small population and geographic expanse will not allow for a free standing university until more residents complete their K-12 education.

ee also

* Higher education in Canada

External links

* [http://www.acat.gov.ab.ca/ Alberta Council on Admissions and Transfer (ACAT)]
* [http://www.cicic.ca/500/all-of-canada.canada#nu Post secondary Education in Nunavut (Canadian information Centre for International Credentials)]


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