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Ontario Tech acknowledges the lands and people of the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation.

We are thankful to be welcome on these lands in friendship. The lands we are situated on are covered by the Williams Treaties and are the traditional territory of the Mississaugas, a branch of the greater Anishinaabeg Nation, including Algonquin, Ojibway, Odawa and Pottawatomi. These lands remain home to many Indigenous nations and peoples.

We acknowledge this land out of respect for the Indigenous nations who have cared for Turtle Island, also called North America, from before the arrival of settler peoples until this day. Most importantly, we acknowledge that the history of these lands has been tainted by poor treatment and a lack of friendship with the First Nations who call them home.

This history is something we are all affected by because we are all treaty people in Canada. We all have a shared history to reflect on, and each of us is affected by this history in different ways. Our past defines our present, but if we move forward as friends and allies, then it does not have to define our future.

Learn more about Indigenous Education and Cultural Services

Women for STEM Celebrate Success

Maia Johnson PhotoMaia Johnson

Second Year Computer Science Student and Women for STEM Award Recipient

In high school, Maia Johnson excelled in the arts and in math – so when it came time to choose her undergrad program she opted for computer science. “I felt it would be cool to learn about coding, which I had never done before, and how to apply it to artistic fields. I was able to combine and excel in both my passions,” says Maia.  Ontario Tech was Maia’s first choice because its computer science program has a specialization in digital media.

When Maia was accepted to Ontario Tech she also qualified for the Women for STEM Scholarship program. Ontario Tech’s Women for STEM program was created in 2019 to close the gender gap in science, technology, engineering and math.  It is built on three pillars to engage and empower women in STEM: scholarships and bursaries, mentorship and networking opportunities, and celebrating and promoting the achievements of women throughout the university community and beyond. 

As a Women for STEM Award recipient, Maia credits the program for the support she needed to help avoid student debt and provide opportunities beyond the classroom. One of the ways the program does this is through its offering of events and workshops to Women for STEM Award Recipients throughout the academic year.  “As a recipient of the program I can meet and interact with other people who work in industry and who are interested in my field, which will continue to support me as I pursue a career in this industry, says Maia.”

Another important element of the Women for STEM program is its mentorship program. Students in the first year of the program are paired with an industry professional who they can connect with throughout the year. Mentors provide career advice and support to the students as well as insight into their chosen professions. Maia has built a good relationship with her mentor who provides insight into various choices available to Maia as she continues her career journey. Maia’s mentor is also an Ontario Tech alum so they are able to share stories about the university too!

As Maia looks to the future and her career as a women in STEM she believes she will be well prepared and the opportunities are endless! What would she say to all the girls and women out there thinking of pursuing a career in STEM? “Just go for it!”