MRU establishes new associate vice-president position for indigenization and decolonization
by Riggs Zyrille Vergara, Publishing Editor
Starting May this year, Dr. Linda ManyGuns becomes the vice-president of indigenization and decolonization at Mount Royal University (MRU). As the senior Indigenous leader of MRU, she will be providing the vision, strategy, leadership and direction in efforts and projects towards indigenization and decolonization.
As a Blackfoot woman born on the Tsuut’ina Nation and registered at Siksika, ManyGuns will impart her extensive knowledge, experience and education to the university’s indigenization plans.
Being part of the Beaver Bundle Society and an elder for the Buffalo Women’s Society, she has respect for all life and all thoughts through the traditional knowledge that informs her work. Most of her academic papers and projects are guided by her traditional knowledge with a focus on Indigenous studies.
“Mostly I advocate for respect. That is the highest learning we can achieve. We must always keep in mind that regardless of the people around you, you must never waiver.”, reads a statement from Many Guns in her LinkedIn account.
ManyGuns acquired a Bachelor of Arts degree from St. Thomas University, a Master’s from Carleton University, a law degree from University of Ottawa and a doctorate from Trent University.
ManyGuns was also a professor in the University of Lethbridge’s Department of Indigenous Studies for 11 years. While serving as chair of the department, she updated the 45-year-old curriculum.
As an educator, she puts a huge value on Indigenous students succeeding in their own education.
In addition, Many Guns also worked as a waitress, high-steel construction work and a chef. Through these jobs, she has experienced discrimination and lateral violence. But she refuses to let herself be defined by any of it.
“Transformation should be gentle, and any process should reflect and integrate all thoughts in a consensus model,” ManyGuns said.