Academic News on Indigenous People: Aboriginal Students Needed in Law Schools


Academic news on indigenous people recently highlights aboriginal students that are encouraged to apply to Ontario's law schools.

Adam Fiddler is one among a few of indigenous people and aboriginal students in Ontario law schools who finally pursues his dream to become a lawyer. In 2012, Fiddler enrolled in Lakehead University law school and this year, he will be the first graduate in the faculty.

Fiddler recalled how he was excited that Lakehead opens a law school because living in suburb might not give him access to big city's law schools. This academic news on indigenous people is not new in the region. Law Times conducted a survey to six schools: University of Ottawa, University of Toronto, Queen's University, Western Law, Osgoode Hall Law School and University of Windsor. The report found that less than 2 percent of the total enrollments were aboriginal people. In five years, there were less than 140 aboriginal students enrolled in the province's law schools.

As for Lakehead University's Bora Laskin Faculty, the survey did not count it in because the school is still in the third year since establishment. Within three years, the database recorded its indigenous people, 12 students, who registered in law schools.

Geographic constraint factor stops aboriginal students from enrolling  due to the remote area that these students reside, geographic becomes the barrier to pursue higher education. The communities have difficulty in accessing distant institutions as they are required to travel out of the town.

Experts suggest fostering better learning environment for indigenous people, specifically aboriginal students. There are programs and funding for aboriginal people according to the Ontario but schools have to provide better learning environment for these indigenous people. Windsor Law spokesperson announced that the school will have two academics, aboriginal professors, giving lectures in the university. This is hoped to attract more aboriginal students. There is also a law camp designed for members in faculty who self-identify as aboriginal student.

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