STM College hosts round dance to celebrate start of another academic year

A round dance was part of the opening event at St. Thomas More College this fall. (Photo by Paul Sincewicz, STM)

Evening of drumming, singing and dancing draws young and old

By Paul Sinkewicz, STM Communications

(This article was originally published at and is used with permission)

St. Thomas More College recently hosted a Round Dance to welcome students back for another school year.

The event attracted hundreds of partipants from Saskatoon and area, and featured invited drumming and singing groups, Metis jigger Courtney-Dawn Anaquod, special guests. Master of ceremonies Sanford Strongarm ran the program, keeping young and old dancing in between speakers.

STM College has a focus on strengthening relationships with Indigenous communities and groups at USask and the local and provincial community, and recognizes the importance in honoring Indigenous culture through integration of ceremony in College celebrations.

Under the leadership of STM’s Scholar on Indigenous Education, Harry Lafond of Muskeg Lake Cree Nation, STM’s Authentic Indigenization action group brought on Lorna Arcand to serve as cultural coordinator for the event.

With additional support from Yvette Arcand, Director, and Arlene Bear, Associate Director, Indian Teacher Education Program (ITEP), a full day of activity was been planned.

Dozens of volunteers from STM and ITEP got together before the event to make 700 sandwiches and create bagged lunches for attendees.

T-shirts were also given out as gifts to participants, with both red and orange shirts available to honour both Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls and Residential School Survivors and Victims.

Before the dancing commenced at the Education Gym, a traditional feast and Pipe ceremony at Gordon Oakes Red Bear Student Centre, under the new leadership of Candace Wasacase-Lafferty.

The event was hosted by STM in partnership with Muskeg Lake Cree Nation, ITEP, the Saskatoon Tribal Council and with support from SaskCulture.


STM was proud to host its first-ever round dance on Sept. 23. (Photo by Paul Sincewicz, STM)

Volunteers formed a highly-efficient production line – a necessity when you are making 700 sandwiches. (Photo by Paul Sinkewicz, STM)

Staff and students from STM College volunteered to help feed the Round Dance participants. (Photo by Paul Sinkewicz, STM)

Master of ceremonies Sanford Strongarm (Photo by Paul Sincewicz, STM)

Drumming and singing call the dancers to the floor. (Photo by Paul Sincewicz, STM)

The beat of the drumming is infectious. (Photo by Paul Sincewicz, STM)


(Photo by Paul Sincewicz, STM)

(Photo by Paul Sincewicz, STM)

(Photo by Paul Sincewicz, STM)

(Photo by Paul Sincewicz, STM)