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Participants at Toronto Metropolitan University, Indigenous Roots tour, August 8, 2021. Image by Herman Custodio.

Statue of Egerton Ryerson, 1983, Courtesy of the City of Toronto Archives, Fonds 620, Item 177.

Indigenous Student Services (Gdoo-maawnjidimi Mompii) at Toronto Metropolitan University, 2023.

Indigenous Student Lounge, Toronto Metropolitan University, 2023.

  • Renaming: Ryerson University to Toronto Metropolitan University

    Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU) is the first post-secondary institution in North America to change its name to address colonial history. Name changes have been criticized as efforts to “erase history”, but these criticisms fail to recognize that the colonial trauma done to Indigenous people are engrained in these communities. The renaming is in line with the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Call to Action 79, which calls for the integration of Indigenous history, heritage values, and memory practices into Canada’s national heritage and history.

    TMU’s Indigenous Student Services, Indigenous Student Lounge, Indigenous Education Council (IEC), and other initiatives are created with the intention to support, encourage, and preserve traditional culture among First Nations, Inuit and Métis students. This includes adhering to TRC Calls to Action 13-17 regarding Indigenous language rights.

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  • Renaming: Ryerson University to Toronto Metropolitan University

    Hear from TMU Urban Agriculture student Allan Jamieson (Cayuga, Six Nations of the Grand River) about the importance of removing colonial commemorations. Allan  grew up learning from Native peoples on both sides of the Niagara River. After years of learning to sing, dance, language, and history, the importance of planting and farming became clear to Allan. He believes that concepts such as the Calls to Action by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, along with the United Nations Declaration of Indigenous peoples, can be put into action in a garden, and that working the land is a way of reconnecting to the original ways for all people.

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  • Renaming: Ryerson University to Toronto Metropolitan University

    Listen to three traditional songs by Allan Jamieson from the Cuyuga Nation of Six Nations of the Grand River. The first song is for an extinct bird, the passenger, which would cover the sky day to night. The second is a women’s dance song to honour all women energies and the sky women who created the earth. The third is a friendship song (with English), expressing that perhaps communities may never see those children who were taken away or their loved ones.

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  • Renaming: Ryerson University to Toronto Metropolitan University

    Additional Resources:

    Circles for Reconciliation Article

    Circles for Reconciliation facilitates small gatherings of an equal number of Indigenous and non-Indigenous people in discussion circles, with the mission to establish trusting, meaningful relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples as part of the 94 Calls to Action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC).

    Initial Press Release from TMU

    Read the official press release from the university outlining the institution’s stance on the new name.

    Action Plan from TMU

    TMU produced an action plan where the public can follow their process for the renaming project.

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