The YLS program is set in Nogojiwanong within the traditional territory of the Mississauga Anishinaabeg and other Indigenous Peoples who have shared this land. The region is also known as Peterborough Kawartha (in southern Ontario), and our exploration will extend north into Haliburton. The region includes the First Nation communities of Curve Lake, Hiawatha and Alderville.
Our primary classroom is on the beautiful main campus of Trent University, within the School of Education in Otonabee College. The Trent University setting will provide us with access to a rich learning environment in general, and to staff, professors, and events (workshops, conferences, special presentations etc) more specifically.
YLS graduates achieving an average of 80% in the two environmental-themed courses will earn the first year creditFoundations of Environmental Science and Studies (ERSC101OH) from Trent University through a “cross articulation” agreement signed between Trent U and the Kawartha Pine Ridge DSB.
Trent’s School of the Environment is a national leader and Trent’s Indigenous Environment Studies Program is the only one of its kind in Canada. Trent’s School of Education has a very strong focus on sustainability and Indigenous education. The spacious campus setting also provides us very easy access to forests, fields and river to get our regular dose of “Vitamin N” (Nature!)
We will spend time at Fleming College’s Frost Campus School of Environmental and Natural Resource Sciences (SENRS). SENRS programing focuses on active, outdoor hands-on learning and the Campus has state of the art facilities for teaching programs like ecological restoration, ecosystem management, aquaculture and sustainable agriculture, sustainable waste management, and forestry.
Graduates in the college stream of YLS courses will earn the 1st year creditSkills for Stewardship and Sustainability (NATR8) from Fleming College’s School of Environmental and Natural Resource Science (through a second cross articulation agreement).
Much of our learning will unfold in the Peterborough/Kawartha/Haliburton community as we take frequent field trips to investigate best practices in sustainable community-based agriculture, renewable energy production, transportation, urban design and more.
We will spend time with surrounding First Nations communities, and will travel within the Southern Ontario region for further exploration of best practices.
United Nations University RCE Designation
In January of 2017, the Peterborough/Kawartha/Haliburton region was designated by the United Nations University (UNU) as a Regional Centre of Expertise (RCE) for Education for Sustainable Development. The RCE initiative recognizes communities from around the world that demonstrate leadership in addressing complex sustainability challenges, and works to network these communities to support even greater innovation and collaboration. We are only the 3rd such designation in Canada.
YLS Project Director Cameron Douglas was part of the interim steering committee that prepared the successful application to the UNU and is very pleased that YLS will will have an opportunity to contribute to and benefit from active participation within this sustainability education network.
The RCE application identified six long-term objectives that will guide the work of the Network moving forward. They align strategically with YLS objectives and include:
To recognize the vital importance of Indigenous Knowledge systems as they engage across all curricula
To implement age-appropriate sustainability and stewardship education frameworks from pre-school to secondary school, in both formal and informal settings
To build strong bridges between school curriculum and the spectrum of programs offered at Trent University and Fleming College
To link post-secondary programs and community-based training programs to green jobs, research, and innovation in the region, and
To develop reciprocal exchanges of sustainability knowledge and practice between residents within the region and with communities across the globe
To support the goals of the UN Global Action Plan for Sustainable Development