Aboriginal people have an age-old cultural and spiritual relationship with the forest, and, with 80% of Aboriginal peoples living in or near forested areas, they have a long history of involvement in the forest industry. In recent times, growing recognition of indigenous rights to land and natural resources has resulted in more Aboriginal involvement in forest management decisions and more partnerships between Aboriginal and forest-based businesses. In fact, the forest industry has become one of the most important commercial sectors for Aboriginal people [in BC and Canada]. In addition, the forest sector is increasingly looking towards Aboriginal communities as an important source of labour and supplier of services (source: Natural Resources Canada).
VIU offers a bridging program to First Nations students that provides face-to-face classroom learning. Find out more about the VIU Aboriginal University Bridging Program Certificate.