First Aboriginal counsellor appointed at York

Bonnie Neuman, vice-president students and alumni, has made the following announcement:

For the past year, Aboriginal and First Nation students and faculty members and others within the University have been working toward establishing an Aboriginal Education Council and initiating the position of Aboriginal counsellor. A grant this year from the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities has allowed us to begin this process.

I am very pleased to announce the appointment of Randall Pitawanakwat as the first Aboriginal counsellor at York University. Pitawanakwat, who has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Laurentian University, comes to York from Cambrian College where he served as the Native Student Support Officer and worked very closely with the First Nations Student Association there. He has approximately 10 years of experience working with First Nations communities and organizations, and is deeply involved as a volunteer in his community, serving on boards such as Shkagamik-Kwe Health Centre and the Association of Ontario Health Centres.

Pitawanakwat will be providing advice on University academic and non-academic resources, cultural information and support to our First Nations and Aboriginal students, will work closely with their association (FNASA), and will assist in the further development of an Aboriginal Education Council at York University.

Randall Pitawanakwat began work at York University on Oct. 15 and can be reached at 219A Lumbers, ext. 22607, e-mail