Heather earned her Honors Bachelor of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Education degrees from Lakehead University. Immediately upon graduating she headed up to Northern Manitoba. She has spent her entire decade-long teaching career in the remote First Nation community of God’s Lake Narrows. This beautiful and inspiring place has now become home to Heather and her incredible family.
Heather decided to further her education at Brandon University in the Masters of Education Administration sector, in order to help facilitate positive change in her community and continue her professional studies.
Heather strives to bring new ideas, restore old traditions, execute projects, and enhance creative energy in the isolated, and picturesque Cree community. It is her hope and life’s mission to ensure First Nations’ children have access to quality education.
I would like to nominate Heather Mason, who is currently enrolled in the Master of Education (Educational Administration) program. I have had the unusual opportunity to teach Heather in three classes during the program. I met her when she registered for an elective class that I taught in the Spring session of 2017 about change leadership theory and the calls to action that were put forth by the Truth and Reconciliation Committee. Heather is a teacher in the community of God’s Lake Narrows, Manitoba. During that class, she undertook several projects in her community that drew my attention to the work that she is doing as a positive leader for students in her school. In the class, I challenged students to go beyond academic learning about the calls to action and actually make an effort to take action. Heather completed three different action projects in the space of the six week course: 1) She helped her students to create a collective-video in which they shared parts of their personal identities to help explain to Canadians what it means to be Indigenous. It was viewed more than a 10,000 times online. 2) She completed a large artwork that she placed in the school hallway to initiate discussion about Canada 150. 3) She led students to design and create a mural that ran the length of the school hallway to celebrate their culture. Since then, I have taught her both Introduction to Educational Administration and Leadership in Educational Institutions. In each class, she has positioned herself as a voice for social justice, she has challenged her classmates to reconsider their assumptions, and she has challenged herself to learn more and more about the issues that affect her community. I have come to appreciate her kindness, her love for the land and her community, and her incredible artistic ability. Heather is an outstanding student who supports her classmates and engages in authentic relationships within the class and outside of the class via social media connections. She is a strong female role model and a skilled leader. I have only met Heather in person once when she traveled to Brandon University to represent her school at our Career Fair. She attended my class in person rather than by video conference that night. I was delighted to have a visit with her in person and excited to learn that she was exactly the person that I had come to know through our online conversations. I very enthusiastically nominate Heather Mason to receive the honour of being recognized by the Status of Women Review Committee as they celebrate International Women’s Day 2019.
Thank-you for the opportunity to highlight the accomplishments of one person who is doing MORE than her share to make a difference.