Indigenous Student Recruitment Initiative

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s (AAFC) Indigenous Student Recruitment Initiative offers Indigenous students work experience that allows for personal growth while contributing to the goals of the Department. Working in a team environment, students can expand their knowledge and develop skills associated with science and other professions within the federal public service.

Employment Opportunities

For summer or full-time opportunities, students and graduates apply to public service recruitment programs including:

Elder Support

AAFC’s full-time Elder provides guidance and mentorship to Indigenous students. As the primary liaison with Indigenous communities, the Elder is able to build cultural awareness within the Department.

Diversity and Inclusion

AAFC is committed to attracting, developing and retaining a diverse innovative and high-performing workforce. Its diversity networks, composed of employee volunteers, help the department continue to grow as an inclusive and respectful workplace. By being inclusive, we recognize the value of diversity and welcome the unique talents and experiences of all.

These inclusiveness-based groups are open to all employees. Students are welcome to participate in activities organized by the Networks, which include:

  • Indigenous Network Circle
  • Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Network
  • Persons with Disabilities Network
  • Visible Minorities Network
  • Women in Science Network
  • Young Professionals Network

Opportunities for Indigenous Students

Watch as several Indigenous students share their experiences working at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, in positions acquired through the Federal Student Work Experience Program.

Opportunities for Indigenous Employees

Watch as Indigenous employees of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada describe the benefits of working for the Department.

Video transcript

[Light electronic music fades up.]

[Two workers are pruning apple trees in an orchard. The title of the video appears over this image.]

Text on screen: Opportunities For Indigenous Youth, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

[The video cuts to an image of Sterling-Rae King. She is standing against a black background and is speaking slightly off camera.]

Sterling-Rae King: My name is Sterling-Rae and I'm from the BC Metis Nation.

[The video cuts to an image of Alexandra Freedman. She is standing against a black background and is speaking slightly off camera.]

Alexandra Freedman: My name is Ali and I am Metis.

[The video cuts to an image of Kaylie Atkinson. She is standing against a black background and is speaking slightly off camera.]

Kaylie Atkinson: My name is Kaylie Atkinson and I am First Nations status.

[The video cuts to an image of Brayden Jones. He is standing against a black background and is speaking slightly off camera.]

Brayden Jones: My name is Brayden Jones and I am Metis.

[Cut back to Sterling-Rae King.]

Sterling-Rae King: What attracted me to work with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada...

[Cut to a shot of Sterling-Rae taking readings in a vineyard.]

...was that it was the perfect opportunity to be able to continue my learning throughout the summer in an out of classroom setting.

[Cut back to Alexandra Freedman.]

Alexandra Freedman: I applied through the FSWEP program and I self-identified as indigenous. When I first got the job I didn't really know what agriculture was. I just thought it was dealing with cows and pigs.

[Cut to a shot of Brayden Jones working in a lab.]

Kaylie Atkinson: You're doing hands on stuff everyday so it's definitely something you're going to use in the future.

[Cut back to Kaylie Atkinson.]

I've learned a lot so far.

[Cut back to Brayden Jones.]

Brayden Jones: I'm a first year student just coming out of university and I'm working right beside a researcher.

[Cut back to Sterling-Rae King.]

Sterling-Rae King: I think the most surprising thing about working here is being able to see all the different jobs that Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada offers.

[Cut to a series of shots showing the different types of work available through AAFC.]

There's more than just the science and research part of this and all the other jobs coming in.

[Cut to a shot of an employee walking up to the front doors of the Summerland Research and Development Centre.]

Alexandra Freedman: I would definitely recommend getting into the government.

[Cut back to Alexandra Freedman.]

I think now more than ever, if you're given the chance, or if you're able to put yourself out there and make a name for yourself and make a name for indigenous youth, and in general just indigenous people in the government of Canada, that's a major thing.

[Cut back to Kaylie Atkinson.]

Kaylie Atkinson: Being an indigenous woman, I think it's so important for other indigenous youth to work in the government.

[Cut back to Alexandra Freedman.]

Alexandra Freedman: There's tons of jobs out there especially if you're indigenous. It truly is a rewarding experience and it looks great on a resume as well.

[Cut back to Brayden Jones.]

Brayden Jones: It seems like just yesterday that I started. I can't believe how much I've grown this summer.

[Cut back to a shot of Sterling-Rae King working in a vineyard.]

Sterling-Rae King: I really like working for the government. I think it's a great opportunity.

[Cut back to Sterling-Rae King.]

I would definitely recommend it.

[Cut back to Kaylie Atkinson.]

Kaylie Atkinson: I definitely would recommend it.

[Cut back to Brayden Jones.]

Brayden Jones: The more people that are able to get involved with it, the better.

[Cut back to Alexandra Freedman.]

Alexandra Freedman: There's so much that this department deals with, there's so much science, and so much thought that goes behind everything about agriculture. It's a great learning experience.

[Fade to black.]

[Fade up from black.]

Text on screen: For more information contact AAFC's Elder, Mervin Traverse at mervin.traverse@canada.ca

[The Canada wordmark appears on the screen with an animated Canadian flag over the last letter of the word.]

Text on screen: Canada

[Black text appears under the Canada wordmark.]

Text on screen: © Her Majesty the Queen in the Right of Canada, represented by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (2016).

[Light electronic music fades out.]

[Fade to white.]

Video transcript

[Light electronic music fades up.]

[A truck is driving through a vineyard. The title of the video appears over this image.]

Text on screen: Opportunities For Indigenous Employees, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

[The video cuts to an image of Angelene Giesbrecht. She is standing against a black background and is speaking slightly off camera.]

Angelene Geisbrecht: My name is Angelene Giesbrecht. Cree and Ojibwe are my heritage.

[The video cuts to an image of Jackie Mason. She is standing against a black background and is speaking slightly off camera.]

Jackie Mason: My name is Jackie Mason. I'm Metis.

[The video cuts to an image of Erle Einarsson. He is standing against a black background and is speaking slightly off camera.]

Erle Einarsson: My name is Erle Einarsson. I am Ojibwe.

[The video cuts to an image of Darren Cook. He is standing against a black background and is speaking slightly off camera.]

Darren Cook: My name is Darren Cook. I am a quiet, shy Mohawk.

[The video cuts to an image of Tony Savard. He is standing against a black background and is speaking slightly off camera.]

Tony Savard: I am Tony Savard. And I am also an indigenous person.

[Light electronic music continues.]

[Cut back to the shot of Erle Einarsson.]

Erle Einarsson: We are a nature-based people.

[Cut to a shot of an indigenous student working in a vineyard.]

Agriculture is also a nature-based industry.

[Cut to a close up of the indigenous student using high tech equipment.]

[Cut back to the shot of Erle Einarsson.]

We need to get more of our young people, well not just our young people but all of our people more involved.

[Cut back to the shot of Angelene Giesbrecht.]

Angelene Giesbrecht: There are areas that are maybe under represented from the indigenous community.

[Cut back to the shot of Jackie Mason.]

Jackie Mason: Indigenous people are the people of the land.

[Cut to a shot of two workers pruning apple trees in an orchard.]

They respected their environments.

[Cut to a series of shots of freshly grown produce.]

They respected the wildlife. That's the spirit and those are the ideas that we need...

[Cut back to the shot of Jackie Mason.]

...when we're thinking about innovation, when we're thinking about what we need going forward.

[Light electronic music continues.]

[Cut back to the shot of Tony Savard.]

Tony Savard: It's important to bring this knowledge, this strength, back to the department.

[Cut to a shot of an indigenous student taking reading in a vineyard.]

Jackie Mason: There's also fresh ideas, fresh ways of thinking of things.

[Cut to a series of shots of an indigenous student working in a lab.]

It's great to have that youth perspective.

[Cut back to the shot of Angelene Giesbrecht.]

Angelene Giesbrecht: They are needed in the government.

[Cut back to the shot of Darren Cook.]

Darren Cook: To me they're the future. The represent the future.

[Light electronic music continues.]

[Cut back to the shot of Tony Savard.]

Tony Savard: It's also important for them to consider Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada as an employer of choice.

[Cut back to the shot of Jackie Mason.]

Jackie Mason: I see AAFC as a department that cares.

[Cut to a shot of Jackie Mason working at her computer.]

They want to embrace us as a culture and as a people.

[Cut back to the shot of Darren Cook.]

Darren Cook: It's the type of department that allows you to have many opportunities.

[Cut to a series of shots showing lab work, field work, office work, etc.]

If you don't like this job you can always try another job. Within Ottawa or across the country.

[Cut to an aerial view of one of the AAFC greenhouses.]

[Cut to an image of an AAFC truck driving through a field.]

[Cut to an image of Angelene Giesbrecht working at her computer.]

Angelene Giesbrecht: There are plenty of opportunities in areas, not only just in science or just in the agriculture research part of it.

[Cut back to the shot of Erle Einarsson.]

Erle Einarsson: If you like working with people...

[Cut to a shot of an employee walking up to the doors of the Summerland Research and Development Centre.]

...this is a good place to be.

[Cut to a shot of Erle Einarsson at his desk, smiling.]

[Cut back to the shot of Erle Einarsson.]

It gives us a way to expand our community.

[Light electronic music continues.]

[Cut back to the shot of Darren Cook.]

Darren Cook: The federal government offers a great opportunity, career-wise. I started at the very bottom and ended up as a Director. To me, the whole journey was great.

[Fade to black.]

[Fade up from black.]

Text on screen: For more information contact AAFC's Elder, Mervin Traverse at mervin.traverse@canada.ca

[The Canada wordmark appears on the screen with an animated Canadian flag over the last letter of the word.]

Text on screen: Canada

[Black text appears under the Canada wordmark.]

Text on screen: © Her Majesty the Queen in the Right of Canada, represented by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (2016).

[Light electronic music fades out.]

[Fade to white.]

Contact Us

For more information on AAFC’s Indigenous Student Recruitment Initiative, contact:

Jill Hull, Manager Indigenous Relations
jill.hull@agr.gc.ca
613-773-2026.

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