C O M M U N I T Y S E R V I C E
Since my early teen years, I have been actively involved with community organizations as a youth volunteer leading the direction of youth initiatives in Stephenville. Moreover, I was a founding youth with the Community Youth Network (CYN).
I have been actively involved in the Mi’kmaq community since the late 1990s when my Indigenous ancestry became known to me after years of community and familial suppression, stemming from histories of discrimination, exclusion, and erasure on the island of Newfoundland.
My involvement, both personal and professional, within the urban Indigenous community of Tkaronto has been one of many gifts. To learn and grow with a group of people who have rich lived experiences within a space where you do not only listen but where you are also heard. From Indigenous Board of Directors to ceremonies, or community events, my continued involvement with the urban Indigenous community of Tkaronto has encompassed relations to reciprocity, inclusion, and respect. My doctoral studies have allowed me to expand my web of relations to include the Mohawk, Seneca, Oneida, Cayuga, Onondaga, and Tuscarora nations of Six Nations of the Grand River and the Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte of Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory. Furthermore, the Michi Saagiig (Mississauga Anishinaabeg) of Curve Lake First Nation. The relations are not static but are continually expanding and developing, and it is without a doubt that my involvement within the Department of Social Work will depend on furthering these relations with the Michi Saagiig Anishinaabeg.
DIRECTOR, BOARD OF DIRECTORS
R E S E A R C H O V E R V I E W
My research program was initiated by my curiosity about identity formation and maintenance, in relationship with those who are also influenced by tactics of settler-colonialism, where navigation and negotiation of spaces and places based on dominant measures are all too common. Moreover, this research project expands my research scholarship, based on my previous master’s research, Are You Native Enough? An Analysis of White Passability Among Indigenous Peoples in an Urban Context, which focuses on the exploration of the colonial interference imposed onto Indigenous identities through forced removal and assimilation and unearthing ways in which healing can create personal and cultural sovereignty.
My past research endeavors remind me that our research interests should not simply be about research topics, but an interest in the way we do research. My past and current research rely heavily on the relationships he has built with Indigenous Peoples and non-Indigenous peoples. My major research paper (MRP) of my Master of Social Work degree, Are You Native Enough? An Analysis of White Passability Among Indigenous Peoples in an Urban Context, focused on the exploration of the colonial interference imposed onto Indigenous identities through forced removal and assimilation and unearthing ways in which healing can create personal and cultural sovereignty. A review of the neoliberal ideologies and discourse was pertinent to unearth how Indigenous identities were formulated and maintained within an urban setting such as Toronto, as a reference point of context. This research project was possible due to my research throughout the years of relationship building, mutual work efforts, and proven trust.
My work as part of a research group, led by Dr. Jeanette Schmind, focused on contextualizing (imported) Western social work knowledges and local worldviews and needs. Moreover, how individualized social work perspectives, particularly those aimed at social control, have sometimes harmed local populations. The research examined contextualized education in South Africa and Canada/Turtle Island, two countries that have an explicit agenda regarding local responsiveness, based on interviews with more than 20 faculty from the two countries as well as national focus groups to examine the perspectives of faculty in applying contextualized social work education and illuminated classroom content and strategies.
My current research, Politics, Identity, & Relations in the Development of the Qalipu First Nation in Kataqmkuk (Newfoundland), is a twelve-month pilot project that will expand my research program, based on my previous research, Are You Native Enough? An Analysis of White Passability Among Indigenous Peoples in an Urban Context, this new research study I am proposing will expand the concept of a cultural critique of dominant, modern relationships to "identity and authenticity" to include the 2017 decision under a federal government review of the founding list of the Qalipu First Nation of Southwestern Newfoundland. Moreover, to unearth the implication of the points-based criteria to authenticate what constitutes Indigeneity or "Indianness" under the Indian Act.
P U B L I C A T I O N S
Young, S., N. (2019). Attaining Wholeness Through Re-claiming Indigenous Identity & Spirituality. In Njoki Wane, Rose Torres, and Dionisio Nyaga, eds., Transversing & Translocating Spirituality: An Epistemological, Theoretical and Pedagogical Conversation. Nsemia Inc. Toronto, Ontario. Publishers.
Young, S. N. (2022). Where is Home? A Critical Review of Settler Colonialism & Mi'kmaw Claims to Authenticity in Newfoundland. Journal of Citizenship Studies. (Forthcoming, Spring 2022)
Young, S., N. (2020). Politics, Identities, & Relations in the Development of the Qalipu First Nation in Taqamkuk (Newfoundland). In Progress.
Young, S., N. (2020). Mi’kmaq Migration & Culture: Influence of Settler Colonialism on Re-location & Re-establishment. (In Progress).
Young, S. N. (2017). Are You Native Enough? An Analysis of White Passability Among Indigenous Peoples in an Urban Context (master’s thesis). York University, Toronto, Canada.
Schmid, J., Young, S.N., Morgenshtern, M. (2019). Circles of Conversations: Contextualized Social Work Education. Paper presented at Canadian Association for Social Work Education (CASWE-ACFTS), Vancouver, BC.
Schmid, J., Young, S.N. (2019). Contextualized Social Work Education: Multiple Perspectives. Paper presented at Canadian Conference on Medical Education, Kamloops, BC.
Young, S.N. (2018). Critical Social Work with Indigenous Peoples; Redefining Reciprocity & Healthy Relationships. Paper presented at Canadian Association for Social Work Education (CASWE-ACFTS), Saskatoon, SK.
Hui, C., Parsons, M., Young, S.N., Hillier, S., Stratton, T.G. (2020). Beyond mending bridges: Decolonizing research structures through co-creating respectful and equitable Indigenous-settler PLHIV partnerships. Poster presented at The 29th Annual Canadian Conference on HIV/AIDS Research Le 29e Congrès annuel canadien de recherche sur le VIH/sida, Quebec City, QC.
Hui, C., Parsons, M., Young, S.N., Hillier, S., Stratton, T.G. (2020). Beyond building more bridges: Decolonizing research structures through co-creating respectful and equitable Indigenous-settler PLHIV partnerships in a multi-site Canadian Cohort. Poster presented at AIDS 2020: 23rd International AIDS Conference (Virtual).
SCHOLARSHIPS & AWARDS
Joseph-Armand Bombardier Award Canada
Graduate Scholarship – Doctoral.
The Social Sciences and Humanities
Research Council (SSHRC), $105,000
Dean’s PhD Scholarship
Trent University, $16,000
Graduate Research Fellowship
Trent University, $20,000
York Masters Fellowship
York University, $11,000
Indigenous Youth Leaders at Youth
Indigenize the Senate 2019, Nominated
Nominated By: Alejandro Mayoral Banos,
Executive Director, Indigenous Friends Association