Indigenizing UBC’s Academic Regalia
In 2019, UBC approached the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm [Musqueam] and Syilx Okanagan Nation to collaborate on a project that would add Indigenous symbols of host Nations of each respective campus to the academic regalia of our senior administration. A working group was formed with representation from both communities along with UBC staff from both campuses. In early 2020, a Call for Artists was distributed to both communities inviting artists to conceptualize how to Indigenize the academic regalia and acknowledge the relationship between UBC and xʷəməθkʷəy̓əm, and UBC and the Syilx Okanagan peoples. The applications were reviewed by the working group and the successful artist is Chrystal Sparrow, a xʷəməθkʷəy̓əm artist. Chrystal had previously designed a stole which was gifted to Past President Stephen Toope to wear over his academic regalia on the Point Grey campus.
UBC’s 19th Chancellor, the Honourable Steven Point (xwĕ lī qwĕl tĕl) and UBC’s 15th President and Vice-Chancellor, Santa J. Ono are honoured to wear the newly designed regalia as part of the university’s fall academic ceremonies in November, 2020.