KPU Associate Arts Dean Melinda Kachina Bige receives Indigenous Distinguished Alumni Award

Wed, Mar 20, 2024

A Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) educator has been recognized for her achievements in improving outcomes for Indigenous people.

Melinda Kachina Bige
Melinda Kachina Bige, Associate Dean in the Faculty of Arts at KPU. Photo by Karla Zaldãna.

Melinda Kachina Bige, Associate Dean in the Faculty of Arts at KPU, is a 2024 winner of an Indigenous Distinguished Alumni Award from University of Victoria (UVic).

The award is one of the annual Distinguished Alumni Awards presented to UVic graduates each year.

Bige holds a Master of Arts in Indigenous Governance from UVic, along with a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from KPU. She is the first Indigenous person to teach Indigenous studies courses at KPU.

“I often look back [on] my family's history and my family's relationship to the land, and our relationship to imperialism and colonization… Specifically the women in my family had the worst time and knowing that I shouldn't even be here pushes me harder than anything else. And then being able to make up for those generations that were systemically targeted to prevent them from being able to live a whole wholesome life, and being able to give that to my kids is what drives me.”

Read more from University of Victoria’s Distinguished Alumni Awards page.