Forestry Operations Metrics and Management Graduation

On Friday October 13th, Kayas held a ceremony for graduates of the Forestry Operations Metrics and Management program, run in partnership with Northern Lakes College.

Eight participants successfully completed all of the course requirements. Each graduate was presented with certificates from Kayas College as well as Northern Lakes College, and a commemorative gift from administrative members of Little Red River Cree Nation.

The program, which began in August 2017, marked the first of its kind to be run in the communities of Little Red. Kayas plans to explore opportunities to run similar programming again in the future, building off of the success of this inaugural offering.

Alberta Climate Summit

Members of Kayas attended the Alberta Climate Summit in Calgary this past week, hosted by Pembina Institute. The event featured speakers from government, industry, academia, and indigenous groups, and focused on considerations and opportunities for Alberta in response to economic and social impacts of climate change trends.

One presentation of note was delivered by Desmond Bull of the Louis Bull Tribe, a First Nations community south of Edmonton, regarding his community’s initiative to install solar panels on the roofs of multiple nation houses. Bull presented his idea to council, and worked with Gridworks Energy to complete the project – which drew on local trades apprenticeship talent.

An afternoon session focusing on “Just Transition” explored the impacts of current energy industry on First Nations communities, and the opportunity for economic development as the industry adapts to demands for increased renewable energy resources.

Kayas’ presence at the conference in preparation for programming arranged underneath the Alberta Indigenous Climate Capacity Program.

Climate Summit

Magic Carpet Ride Resumes in Fox Lake

This past Thursday, families with young children in Fox Lake once again had the opportunity to attend “Magic Carpet Ride” at Fox Lake Elementary School.

Sponsored by Kayas as part of the Community Adult Learning Program, the event is run weekly in John D’or Prairie and Fox Lake. Young learners and their parents participate in activities that encourage reading at an early age, and introduces strategies for parents to get involved with their child’s learning.

Fox Lake Family Lit

The inaugural session for the 2016-17 school year saw a large turnout, marking the program’s continued popularity. The younger attendees were read a story about the changing of the seasons by program facilitator and Fox Lake Elementary teacher Dave Barr, while his co-facilitator Danielle Lapenna – also a teacher at FLE – prepared the follow-up activity: creating and decorating leaves in autumn colours.

Magic Carpet Ride runs each Thursday at 7:00 pm at Fox Lake Elementary. All community members with young children are invited to attend.

Craft Time Leaf


JDP Band Office gets Surface Hub

The John D’or Prairie band office conference room has a new feature to facilitate meetings with local administrators, and those in other communities.

Following the example set by the campuses of Kayas College, LRRCN administration has purchased two 84-inch Microsoft Surface Hubs for the JDP and Fox Lake band offices. The Hubs arrived earlier this week, having to be unloaded via a forklift – weighing in at 900 lbs each as packaged.

The Surface Hub acts like a giant wall tablet, offering apps to support collaboration within a local meeting such as a digital whiteboard and Microsoft Office, and video conferencing via Skype for Business.

The Kayas Carpentry Training team took advantage of the rainy day to mount one of the devices in the JDP conference room.

Summer Student Applications

Applications for the Summer Student Work Program, facilitated by Kayas Cultural College, are now open until May 31st, 2017. Interested students are invited to apply now for work over the 2017 summer break.


  • Currently attending High School or a registered Post-Secondary program
  • Between the ages of 15-30
  • Residing in John D’or Prairie, Fox Lake, or Garden River for Summer 2017

How to apply:

  1. Fill out the online application
  2. Bring the following documents into your local Kayas:
    • Resume
    • Cover Letter
    • Teacher reference letter
    • Grades and attendance (High School only)
  3. Stay tuned for interviews to take place in early June! For more information, call Kayas at (780) 759-2034 or email

Update: Applications are now closed. Thank you to all who applied

Microsoft Education Event

On May 2, 2017, members of Kayas College were invited to present as part of a technology showcase for the Microsoft Education Event in New York City, NY. Kayas’ presentation on the distance learning model used to connect the three campuses of Little Red River Cree Nation was received by Microsoft staff members, insiders, and high-profile tech industry news agencies, and represented the only client-based solution on the showcase floor.

The invitation was the result of a video documentary prepared by Microsoft to display Kayas’ unique application of Surface Hub and Office 365 to facilitate the adult upgrading and community training programs. A film crew traveled to John D’or Prairie in January for three days of filming, including interviews with staff and students, and footage of Kayas classes in progress, and the local geography. The video is currently posted on the Surface Hub case study page on Microsoft’s website.

Microsoft’s marketing campaign highlighting the achievements of Kayas in employing technology to bridge the gaps in distance education has provided positive attention to Kayas College as well as the communities of LRRCN.

Barriers to Adult Education on Reserves: Global News

Two Kayas staff members were recently interviewed by Global News to learn more about the barriers to adult education faced on reserves. Kyle Trumpour, director of housing and community training initiatives, and Daniel St. Arnault, journeyman carpenter and Kayas graduate, spoke with news anchor Shaye Ganam on the Global Edmonton morning show about Kayas’ successes and challenges in meeting the demands of adult education in Little Red River Cree Nation.

Following the morning news discussion, reporter Julia Wong conducted a recorded interview to further explore the socio-economic environment in which Kayas operates. The interview and report can be viewed on the Global News website.