Student Profile: Tehya Quachegan – Indigenous Studies and Psychology

Student Profile: Tehya Quachegan – Indigenous Studies and Psychology

(Greeting in Cree) Hi my name is Tehya Quachegan and I’m from Moose Factory and
I’m a double major in Psychology and Indigenous Studies. I came to Western for
psychology but I ended up taking the intro to Indigenous Studies course and
through that I realized that I could decolonize in a way how I would practice
psychology and use that in the future and this was just because I saw the harm
a psychologist can do when they’re going into communities with little knowledge
of how communities work. Through taking Indigenous Studies I’ve learned a lot
more about my people even though I am Indigenous. I know more about my own
people I’m Cree so I’ve learned more about the Haudenosaunee people especially
being in Haudenosaunee territory currently. And also I’ve built
connections and my professors which has been one of the greatest experiences.
Being in Indigenous Studies they’re always there to support you I found and in your
projects especially. They can support you and they also have real experience being
in communities and working with communities often so that’s also a huge
asset being in Indigenous Studies. I’m also part of the Head and Heart Fellowship
program this summer and that’s a new program for Indigenous students to do
research with professors in the Western community which has been a really
exciting experience. I studied Indigenous knowledge and ways of knowing and I did
this through land-based learning and I’m actually currently working on developing
a land-based learning curriculum to be used in universities. So last year I was
a cultural coordinator for the Indigenous Student Association so I planned the
annual powwow and I also planned ribbon skirt workshops and things like that
and I also worked for indigenous Services. I work in the Academic
Transitions Opportunities Program which is for incoming students and current
students, just to help transition to the university. And we have plenty of support
for students there. So I’d love doing that and this year I’m actually the
President of Indigenous Student Association and I’m just beginning my term
for that and it’s been a very rewarding experience. I have found that there’s a
very strong indigenous community within Western which was also the reason why I
picked Western and I loved it. It’s been a great decision for me. you

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