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RLI Welcomes Talented Métis Students to the Team as part of the Inaugural Métis Internship Program

By: Samantha Hamann, Communications Intern

Launched in January 2023, the Métis Internship Program was created to present Métis students with the opportunity to gain meaningful experience in their fields in a culturally rich environment.

Among these interns are web developers, HR assistants, communications coordinators, and other creative and technical based post-secondary students. Please join us in welcoming the inaugural internship team to Rupertsland Institute.

Scott Anonson (he/him)
Degree: Digital Audio
Role: Communications intern for podcast production and editing
Favourite thing about being Métis: The culture within the community.
Favourite Animal: Platypus
Favourite Artist: Monet
Steele Bailey (he/him)
Degree: Entrepreneurship and Innovation
Role: Coordinating the Métis Youth Summit at the end of March. This role allows real world application of skills in networking, increasing my experience with event planning, and further developing my interpersonal communication skillset with a variety of different people.
Favourite Thing About Being Métis: I love the community. I have had nothing but good memories volunteering for RLI and the Nation as I have met many lovely people who have helped me feel more included in the culture and community at large.
Favourite Breakfast Food: Any kind of hash brown.
Place To Visit: Japan
Ruby Dawn Benson (she/her)
Major: Bachelor of Communications; Major Professional Communications, Minor Journalism
Role: Communications Intern
Favourite Thing About Being Métis: I love that I am a part of the history of our land, and I love that our Métis women have turned nature into a beautiful form of art with our traditional beadwork.
Favourite Hot Beverage: Double-double coffee. Getting a morning coffee is one of my favourite daily routines.
Favourite Natural Landmark/Location: “Longview, Alberta is one of my favourite places to drive through. The name really suits it!”
George Crawford (they/them)
Major: BSC in Architecture
Role: I’m a researcher working on an ambassador program to get Métis students from across Alberta connected to the MNA and get Métis representation into schools.
Favourite Thing About Being Métis: Our history. I love that we are rebels and tricksters with an incredible fashion sense. And I love that we are still here.
Favourite Hot Beverage: “I live for coffee”
Favourite Thing About Self: I am grateful for my creativity and empathy.
Drew Desjarlais (she/her)
Major: Bachelor of Arts; Major Psych, Minor Sociology
Role: Métis Education Intern. This position has already shown me the path which I would like to take with my education. I would love to eventually become a child councillor or therapist. I think I could really make a difference as well as helping young, especially Métis, children as I once was.
Favourite Thing About Being Métis: Our sense of community and adaptability, especially when facing adverse situations.
Favourite Artist: Mac Demarco
Place to Visit: Italy
Rayven Glazebrook (she/her)
Major: Bachelor of Arts; Major Psych, Minor HR
Role: HR Intern/MEF Intern. [This role] introduces me to an office setting and various roles within this environment as well as an in-depth view into education funding side of things.
Favourite Thing About Being Métis: I love being a part of such a supportive community as well as learning the history of my culture.
Favourite Breakfast Food: Breakfast Poutine (Hashbrowns, eggs, sausage/bacon, cheese, and hollandaise)
Dream Place to Visit: Greece to see the beautiful buildings and watch a play, as well as see where some of their ancient history played out. And Australia!
Samantha Hamann (she/her)
Major: Bachelor of Communications; Major Professional Communications, Minor Journalism
Role: Communications and Newsletter Intern. I am incredibly excited to see what being able to put my education to work will create and to further my work experience in the lead up to my upcoming graduation.
Favourite Thing About Being Métis: I love the vibrancy and resilience found within Métis culture. I have also adored seeing my grandmother embrace her heritage through events and style.
Favourite Hot Beverage: Chai! The blend of flavours adds a bright note to any day.
Favourite Natural Landmark: The Banff Hot Springs, especially in the winter. The view of the mountains is out of this world, and nothing beats the feeling of a hot soak and a cold wind.
Matthew McConnell (he/him)
Major: Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
Role: Web-Developer intern. I hope to learn practical skills and gain experience using my degree in a professional environment. I have never done Web-Development in a professional setting before – so excited to learn lots.
Favourite Thing About Being Métis: I like learning as much as I can about the culture, and to be able to learn and identify when my grandparents were unable to due to cultural stigma.
Favourite Artists: John Mayer and the Red Hot Chili Peppers. They inspired me to pick the guitar back up and now I play every day.
Favourite Breakfast Food: Eggs Benedict / Hashbrown combo – particularly from my favourite brunch spot: Fergus and Bix.
Brock Pearson (he/him)
Major: Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
Role: Web Development intern. Rupertsland gives you the opportunity to build that real-world problem-solving skillset, which is a huge boon to have. I also get to take part in a team of interns and join in on conversations regarding design, brainstorming, and implementation. In the real world it’s rare that you end up working alone, so being able to build the soft skills in a caring environment feels great!
Favourite Thing About Being Métis: The sense of community and kinship I get from my fellow Métis people. Once you find like-minded people who want to share stories, better themselves, and learn the history of your kin, it feels awesome. The Métis community has been incredibly caring and receptive to my experiences and any experiences I have heard from other Métis people. It’s an extremely unique and gratifying community to be a part of, and I have learned so much already in my time within it.
Favourite Hot Beverage: Coffee! Wakes you up, keeps you up, focuses you, what’s not to like!?
Dream Place to Visit: I would love to go to Italy. I went as a kid and a romanticized version of it has stayed in my mind ever since. I especially loved Florence and the countryside. I am also a sucker for history and going to France to visit the Louvre, Napoleon’s tomb and other historical landmarks is always fun!
Jory Proft (he/him)
Major: Secondary Education
Role: Education/Podcast Intern. I hope this will help me polish my podcasting skills and learn more about developing education resources.
Favourite thing about being Métis: “I love the community being Métis provides and the shared love of the history and culture of our ancestors.”
Favourite Natural Landmark: I love the Great Lakes region of Ontario, especially Northern Ontario
Favourite Breakfast Food: Hashbrowns

Seanna Savill (she/her)

Major: Grade 12 student
Role: Métis student services intern. It will prepare me for the future work force.
Favourite Thing about Being Métis: Being part of the community.
Dream Place to Visit: Edinburgh, Scotland.
Favourite Artist: The 1975

Mark Thomas (he/him)
Major: Honours Computing Science
Role: Métis Web Developer Intern. I’m helping with the development of a digital platform for Métis students focusing on mentorship and community. I’m excited to apply what I’ve learned in the classroom to real-world problems!
Favourite Thing About Being Métis: I’m most proud of the Métis’s adaptability. My family and ancestors have always made the most of their situations, even when it’s been difficult.
Looking Forward to This Year: Graduating! This is my final semester and I’m hoping to start grad school in the fall.
Favourite Hot Beverage: Coffee!

Meaghan Tomkins (she/her)

Major: Bachelor of Arts
Role: I am working in HR and am excited for experience in professional employment to help determine what I want to do for my future career.
Favourite Thing About Being Métis: I love the community that comes with being Métis. There is so much for me to learn about myself and my heritage each day and I am surrounded by many people who are doing the same and supporting me as I go.
Favourite Fruit: It is, and always has been, peaches”
Dream Place to Visit: I would love to travel to Asia. The historical landmarks are enough for me to want to book a flight. The history there is so deep and rich, I would love to learn all about it.

Ethan Trac (he/him)
Major: Bachelor of Science, specialization in Computer Science
Role: I am a Web Developer Intern at RLI. Database management, web development, and working in a professional team setting will help me gain the necessary tools to be a successful software engineer or web developer!
Favourite Thing About Being Métis: I love being Métis because I can say I am a part of a rich culture, history, and community!
Favourite Artist: Sen Morimoto
What am I most Looking Forward to: I am looking forward to building platforms that will enrich Métis students and provide them with the tools necessary to be successful.
Skylar Wong (he/him)
Major: Bachelor of Commerce. Major Marketing, Minor Property Management
Role: Post-Secondary Intern. This role will provide me more insight on how an organization is run and some of the administrative tasks that need to be done for operations to run smoothly. This position also provides me the opportunity to expand on my communication and people skills, which is vital for this industry.
Favourite Thing About Being Métis: One thing that I adore about of my Métis ancestry is the culture behind my people. Our unique history came from skill and determination, where we were able to adapt innovative ways to our lifestyle without conforming to others. I am glad in more modern times that Métis culture is being explored and admired by people all around Canada, while also being exposed to our beautiful traditions.
Favourite Sport: I have a great passion for soccer and have been playing for 18 years. I have also started coaching and am trying to give back to the beautiful game.
Dream Place to Visit: Europe, especially England and Spain. One of my goals is to see some professional soccer games and experience the atmosphere of the greatest fans in the world.