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          In its 37 year history, our institution has always been a place of exciting opportunities. Our graduates have used the quality education they have received at Yellowquill as a springboard to promising employment. When we call or visit First Nation and Aboriginal communities and organizations, we feel a sense of pride in the great work our graduates are doing. 

          Yellowquill  College was founded by the Dakota Ojibway Tribal Council in 1984 as a physical manifestation of the belief of “Indian Control of Indian Education”. Those visionary leaders saw that a better future was possible through a First Nation-owned and operated post-secondary institute. On October 1, 1984, the College opened in the newly renovated residential school on Crescent Road West in Portage la Prairie on 45 acres of Long Plain First Nation Land. The opening of a First Nation college provided an alternative for aboriginal adults wanting to pursue their educational goals.

The University College currently operates under the auspices of the Dakota Ojibway Tribal Council. The seven chiefs of the member bands serve as the Board of Directors for Yellowquill College. The College is incorporated both federally and provincially and is a non-profit organization.

          The College, which opened with sixteen students, has had over a thousand graduates in a variety of programs. The College and University Entrance Preparation Programs (UCEP), and now the Mature Student High School Diploma program, have prepared hundreds of students for studies at the post-secondary level, whether at Yellowquill or other post-secondary institutions. Training, including the Pre-Electrical, Clerical, Small Business Management, Secretarial, Office Technology, Child Care, Native Economic Development, Financial Accounting, Business Administration, and Administrative Assistant programs, has prepared students directly for the workforce. Community literacy and upgrading programs have provided needed basic skills to students in several First Nation communities. Professional development and work related training has enriched the skills of many First Nation and Aboriginal employees.

Current off-sites for the Mature Student High School Diploma program include Bloodvein First Nation, Long Plain First Nation, and Sioux Valley Dakota Nation.  These community campuses are in partnership with the respective communities.  

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•    Since 1984, Yellowquill University College has operated with the same small base grant from Indian & Northern Affairs Canada, which provides approximately 27% of the total college operating budget.

•    The Province of Manitoba provides funding to deliver a Mature Student High School Diploma program. This means that the remaining portion of the budget is recovered through tuition (cost-recovery).

•    For any program offered and delivered in First Nation communities or in other Aboriginal organizations or other towns or cities, the tuition must cover 100% of the operating costs. The University College does not receive any other grants for resources, curriculum development, administrative or management costs, or technology upgrades.

Mission, Vision, & Values

Mission Statement:

Mandated and established in 1984 by the Dakota Ojibway Tribal Council, Yellowquill University College embraces all learners and provides holistic education and training.  The college encompasses a team of dedicated and supportive professionals guiding our learners to achieve excellence and success in education, employment, and economic development.

Vision Statement:

Yellowquill University College is a First Nation accredited educational institute of excellence, preparing and advocating for students to meet the needs of the 21st century and beyond while providing an appropriate environment that preserves and enhances culture and tradition.

Values Statement:

Image by Andreas Wagner
Image by McGill Library

To cherish knowledge is to know wisdom.

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To know peace is to know love.


Be honest with yourself and others. 

Image by Darren Welsh

Humility is to know yourself as a sacred part of creation.

Image by Patti Black

Living the truth is living the Seven Teachings.

Image by Jacob Fredrick

To honour all creation is to have respect.

Image by Geoff Brooks

It takes courage to do what is right.


Board of Directors


Chief Craig Alexander

Roseau River First Nation

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Chief Jason Daniels


Swan Lake First Nation


Chief Trevor Prince

Sandy Bay First Nation

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Chief Lindsay Bunn

Birdtail Sioux First Nation


Chief Kyra Wilson


Long Plain First Nation


Chief Eric Pashe

Dakota Tipi First Nation

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