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Camosun college

Event organizers Ann-Marie Livingston (l) and Kristi Thiele display a few of the over 60 pieces of BC Indigenous artwork now up for auction on

March 25, 2010

Richard Hunt, Bill Reid and Roy Henry Vickers are just some of the talented Aboriginal artists whose works are being auctioned for Camosun’s Indigenous Business Leadership students’ first-ever business mixer and fundraiser, Thursday, April 8, Cafeteria Annex, Interurban Campus.

An infusion of fun, food and Indigenous culture

Business people, local Indigenous leaders, young entrepreneurs and the community are invited to mix and mingle, enjoy an infusion of fun, food and Indigenous culture and bid on an exclusive selection of BC Aboriginal artwork. Limited edition Indigenous prints, cedar carvings, weavings, textiles and silver jewellery are up for auction from now until 9pm, April 8 on

“The event is a class project,” says second-year student and Sliammon First Nation member Kristi Thiele. “We want to raise awareness of the Indigenous Business Leadership (IBL) program and bring the local business communities and our students together. We also hope to raise over $12,000 for entrance awards, scholarships, and emergency funds for future IBL students.”

Business training with an Indigenous perspective

Camosun’s two-year IBL program blends Indigenous perspectives in management and leadership with a general business education. Courses include financial accounting, business communications, marketing, law, economics, as well as the Indigenous business environment and building Indigenous business relationships. The program also involves group work, guest speakers, field trips, traditional protocol and gatherings. Graduates can move directly into employment or transfer into third-year of Camosun’s Bachelor of Business Administration program. Currently 20 full- and part-time students are enrolled.

Camosun college

Limited edition Indigenous prints, cedar carvings, silver jewellery and weavings are featured at the Indigenous Business students' mixer and art auction, April 8. Tickets $10 and available now.

“What attracted me to the program was the focus on Indigenous ways of doing business,” says student event organizer and Pacheedaht First Nation member Ann-Marie Livingston. “After working in treaty negotiations for over 10 years, I wanted to gain practical skills in financial management, marketing, and communications as well as fine-tune the skills I already had. Currently, I’m writing a communications plan, learning about internet marketing and studying business strategy. After I graduate, I’m taking Camosun’s Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree program and then I’d like to work in business for my community or find a position in marketing.”

“I worked in corporate accounting and finance for 10 years,” adds Thiele. “I wanted a career change and to work within indigenous communities and promote healthy lifestyles. With my business experience, the IBL program seemed like a natural fit. I hope to ladder into the BBA degree as well. I want to build and manage a business for an Indigenous community. I believe the best contribution I can make is to help with their economic development plans.”

“We are all learning how to be effective leaders with specialized knowledge of Indigenous business,” says Livingston. “And now we are applying our new business skills to this fundraising project.”

Find out more

Tickets for the Indigenous Business mixer and silent art auction are $10 and available by contacting Program Leader Susanne Thiessen, 250–370–4165 or Bid on the artwork online now until April 8 at All proceeds go to create bursaries and awards for future Indigenous Business students.


Susanne Thiessen
Program Leader, Indigenous Business Leadership
Facebook:  Indigenous Business Leadership – see Events

Last updated: April 1, 2010 1:59 pm

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