Apr 23, 2024

Vancouver, BCOver 35 Indigenous students from around the province came together this week as two cohorts of the Indigenous Financial Management Certificate Program met at Langara College. The welcome event on campus opened the next phase of study for the second and third cohorts of the program.

The Indigenous Financial Management Certificate is the first step towards the Certified Aboriginal Financial Manager (CAFM) designation. Students enrolled in this program may also further their education by transferring several of these credits to Langara College or the Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA) program. AFOA Canada owns, administers, and awards the Certified Aboriginal Financial Manager (CAFM) designation.

The second cohort will be completing their last AFOA Canada course; the third cohort recently finished their first Langara accounting course.

“Bringing them together is very beneficial as they support each other on their journeys and build very effective support networks and relations across their nations in British Columbia,” said Dan Relihan, Project Manager and an instructor at Langara College.

Students are recruited from Indigenous communities throughout BC to enroll in the program and complete all the course requirements to attain the certificate. They study fully accredited post-secondary accounting in combination with AFOA Canada’s Indigenous content. The goal is to build financial capacity within Indigenous governments and communities to support their goal of self-determination. The program was announced in September 2021.

“People learn differently. If I was struggling, another person would step up to help, while I was able to help others struggling with accounting. For example, our first class was on strategic planning. I worked in accounts payable and had no background in planning, so it was hard to offer input, but my classmates encouraged me to share my thoughts,” said Terriesa Feyer, a Tahltan First Nation student in the first cohort.

This unique partnership is the first of its kind for accounting education in BC.

Originally established in 1996, AFOA BC was founded in response to the need for a united voice for those working in the critical fields of Indigenous finance and administration in this province. AFOA BC subsequently played an instrumental role in creating the national organization AFOA Canada. Together AFOA Canada and AFOA BC are recognized and certified to provide the latest in advanced Indigenous management, finance, and governance training, and continue to support Indigenous students to realize their dreams and goals.

About snəw̓eyəɬ leləm̓ Langara College
Langara College is located on the unceded traditional territory of the Musqueam First Nation. Langara was honoured to receive a name from Musqueam in their language, snəw̓eyəɬ leləm̓, which means house of teachings. Langara is one of BC’s leading undergraduate post-secondary institutions providing University Studies, Career Studies, and Continuing Studies programs and courses to more than 23,000 students annually. Langara’s accounting related courses are accredited as transfer credit to the Chartered Professional Accountants program of professional studies.

Learn more.
Mark Dawson
Manager, Public Affairs
Langara College