The UCalgary tipi set up on the TFDL quad on the main UCalgary campus.

Indigenous Relations Training Program

Learn from Indigenous professionals, Elders and other knowledge keepers and strengthen your connections with the Indigenous community with this immersive and interactive course.

Register for these upcoming sessions

Feb. 21–24, 2023

Held on the main UCalgary campus.


May 8–12, 2023

Held on the main UCalgary campus.

Registration link coming soon!

Aug. 14–18, 2023

Held on the main UCalgary campus.

Registration link coming soon!

November 2023

Held on the main UCalgary campus.

Dates coming soon!

About the Indigenous Relations Training Program

Since 2009, the Indigenous Relations Training Program (IRTP) has been providing professional (and often personal) development to students, professionals and members of the community. It’s a unique program that engages Indigenous program facilitators and Elders to provide a truly immersive learning experience.

There are four sessions throughout the year, held in November, February, May and August. We welcome all individuals seeking to understand the issues facing Canada's Indigenous population today and how to effectively build relationships with Indigenous communities.

Participants who complete all eight modules of the Indigenous Relations Training Program will receive a formal certificate, verifying that the participant has completed 24 hours of non-credit Professional Development.

Contact Information

Sophia Pancic
Indigenous Relations Program Coordinator
Writing Symbols Lodge

Learn how to build enriching and impactful relationships with Indigenous communities

Indigenous people are one of the fastest-growing populations in Canada. In addition to increased economic activity, growth and expansion within Indigenous communities, there are also growing business development opportunities for Indigenous individuals across Canada.

Understanding Indigenous Ways of Knowing, Doing, Connecting and Being, the historical context of Indigenous people in Canada, and how to build fruitful relationships with Indigenous communities is a fundamental step in the journey to truth and reconciliation. In addition, this knowledge and skillset are extremely valuable for job seekers and professionals in all disciplines.

Program cost

UCalgary Students*


Non-UCalgary Students*


UCalgary Staff


UCalgary Alumni


Registered Charity


Professionals and Governmental


* Must provide proof of student status

Payment can be made by VISA/Mastercard/American Express. Registration is processed on a first-come, first-served basis. Registration is open until the session is full, or two weeks before the program start date.

The Métis Nation, Tsuuti'na Nation, Wesley First Nation and Siksika Nation flags.

The Métis Nation, Tsuuti'na Nation, Wesley First Nation and Siksika Nation flags.

What you'll learn

The following interactive learning modules are three hours each and cover the following topics:

Learn how to describe knowledge production systems in Indigenous societies (i.e., protocols, values customs, language, relationships) and their interrelatedness between human beings and the natural world.

Gain an understanding of the origins of Indigenous people in Canada and recognize the impact of social and political events on Indigenous-non-Indigenous relations in Canadian society and Indigenous ways of life. 

Understand who the Métis are, as well as the origins of the fur trade with Métis communities in the Red River Settlement and its importance to Canadian history.

Explore current issues, challenges, and opportunities affecting Métis participation in Canada's education system, employment sector, and political and economic landscape.

Learn about the unique geography, culture and history of the Inuit people in Canada, the processes of change that have shaped the region’s development, and the effects of those processes in historical and contemporary contexts.

Learn about and understand contemporary Inuit realities, for Inuit in the remote northern communities as well as urban Inuit.

Discuss various corporate approaches to Indigenous communities, including the "Duty to Consult and Accommodate", and the concept of “meaningful consultation” with communities in the resource development context and beyond.

In the final module, you'll now be able to understand the implications of the "demographic revolution" that has been and is currently taking place in Indigenous communities.

You'll also be able to discuss the direct and indirect impacts of federal and provincial legislation on Indigenous people.

Funding support

For students

Student rates are subsidized through a generous donation from ATCO. 

Need more funding options? Check out the Student Activities Fund or the Students' Union Funding and Awards page.

For professionals

Organizations may qualify for up to two-thirds of professional development funding for staff. This can be done through the Canada-Alberta Job Grant (CAJG), a collaborative grant program offered by the Alberta and Federal Governments. You must apply for the grant before registering for the course. Please check the grant website for full details.