‘Kwigw8mna’, an Abenaki word that means ‘our and everyone’s house’ was named by Chief Rick O’Bomsawin of Odanak.

This building will help strengthen the relationship with the Abenaki nation in which lands we are fortunate to be gathering and learning on while fostering a sense of community and belonging for our Indigenous students as it becomes their home away from home. Non-Indigenous members of the BU community are also welcomed to frequent this building as the goal is to also create an environment of discussion, learning, and sharing to better the community’s understanding of the different Indigenous cultures present on our campus.

Take a quick tour of Kwigw8mna through the conceptual designs and read the announcement from the university.

Within Kwigw8mna, the basement will be dedicated as a quiet study space for Indigenous students. There will also be half of the main floor that includes a kitchen area, library, Indigenous student leader offices, and a gathering space that will be only accessible to Indigenous students at Bishop’s University and Champlain College.

On the top floor, there will be an apartment which will be designated for hosting Indigenous elders, guest speakers, and family members during their visit on campus. This apartment will offer a safe and comfortable space for our guests to feel at home while being in close company of our Indigenous students and support people. 

The rest of the building consists of offices designated to the Indigenous Student Support people of Champlain and BU, a research lab for the Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Studies, International offices, and Indigenous faculty offices or those who are working on advancing Indigenous studies on campus.