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Ground breaks on Anishinabek skills centre

The $2-million building, located on Manitoulin Island, is slated to open to students next fall.

Ground has broken on the $2-million Anishinabek Skills, Innovation and Research Centre at Kenjgewin Teg on Manitoulin Island.

The M’Chigeeng teaching institute kicked off construction of its new, 9,000-square-foot building on Oct. 24. When complete, the facility will offer students introductory learning opportunities in a variety of trades, such as welding, construction, plumbing and electrical techniques.

Kenjgewin Teg (translated to “A Place of Knowledge” in English) is a non-profit educational institute situated on the M’Chigeeng First Nation, which started offering secondary and post-secondary educational courses in 1994.

It has continued to expand its menu of services to include general interest courses, consultation services, and more, but has run out of space.

The new building will feature a large, versatile shop space that can be reconfigured to meet the needs of whatever program is being offered during a particular semester. Classroom labs will be outfitted with the equipment required for specific trades.

Enrolment at the institute is open to both Indigenous and non-Indigenous learners, and the goal is to introduce students to a trade and help them discover their interest before they move on to further study at a partner college.

Kenjgewin Teg serves a membership of eight First Nation communities: Aundeck Omni Kaning, Constance Lake, M'Chigeeng, Sagamok, Sheguiandah, Sheshegwaning, Whitefish River, and Zhiibaahasing.