London, ON - Brescia, Huron and King’s University Colleges have jointly hired Sean Hoogterp in a new role as Indigenous Initiatives Coordinator. As a status band member of Walpole Island First Nation, Bkejwanong Territory, Hoogterp will work across the three campuses of Huron, Brescia and King’s. He will not only create welcoming environments for Indigenous students, employees and visitors at the three university colleges; he will also help develop strategies to decolonize and indigenize the curricula. As well, Hoogterp will help to build stronger relationships between Huron, Brescia, King’s and the external Indigenous communities.
Hoogterp brings two decades of experience working in post-secondary administration including Indigenous accessibility roles at Lambton College in Sarnia; Brock University in St. Catharine’s; as well as holding the position of Learning Resource Specialist Project Coordinator for Indigenous Services at Western University. As well, he worked at the Walpole Island Heritage Centre in communications and community relations.
He started his new role on February 22, 2022, and will work with the three academic deans of Huron, Brescia and King’s. Part of his work will be to facilitate and report on deliverables that reflect the institutional commitments to Indigenous pedagogy, spaces, curricula, learning resources, and student success.
Sean Hoogterp, Indigenous Initiatives Coordinator:
“My name is Sean Hoogterp and I am from Walpole Island First Nation “Bkejwanong” Territory. My great grandfather, the Reverend Simpson A. Brigham, was born in 1875. He was the first Indigenous person from Walpole Island to graduate from Huron College and be ordained an Anglican minister. He would return to Walpole Island in 1899 to minister to the local Anglican Parish. As the coordinator of Indigenous Initiatives, I am proud to represent my community and ancestors to help understand our histories with the institution and strengthen our future relationships. Miigwetch!”
Geoff Read, Provost and Dean, Faculty of Arts and Social Science, Huron University
“Sean brings an incredible amount of experience to this role, having worked in post-secondary education across the region. I am thrilled to welcome him and confident that he will quickly make an impact across our campuses,” said Dr. Geoff Read, Provost and Dean, Faculty of Arts and Social Science. “Huron is committed to addressing the Calls to Action of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in our campus and in our curriculum. This role is an important step in achieving this goal and building stronger, more collaborative relations with our Indigenous partners.”
Gillian Balfour, Vice-President and Academic Dean, King’s University College:
“I am grateful Sean has decided to join us as we embark on the work of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. As faith-based post-secondary institutions, we have a responsibility to develop relationships with local Indigenous communities, create inclusive spaces, and decolonize our curriculum practices. We are looking forward to the work that Sean will do with the King’s community, including organizing events for shared learning with staff, faculty, and students.”
Anne Barnfield, Interim Academic Dean, Brescia University College:
“I am looking forward having Sean join our community, and support Brescia’s initiatives regarding decolonization of the curriculum and increasing our student supports. Sean’s experience in the post-secondary environment is very impressive; he will be a valued voice in guiding our policies and plans to engage with local Indigenous partners.”
AVP, Marketing & Communications
Huron University College