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Deer switches focus and looks to future of independence

University student Brooke Deer began the start of the new fall semester this week with a clear goal in mind: Independence.
The 24-year-old recently transferred into the Bachelor of Administration program at Concordia University’s John Molson School of Business (JMSB) after previously pursuing a degree in creative writing.
Tewatohnhi’saktha and Morris Mohawk announced last Friday morning that she was selected as the latest recipient of the Business Scholarship Fund.
“Knowing that someone thinks my future is worth investing in truly means a lot,” said Deer.
The $3,000 scholarship is offered twice annually to a motivated Kahnawake’kehró:non pursuing an undergraduate degree in commerce, information technologies, administration and related business fields.
“You have shown persistence in the will to succeed,” said Dwayne Kirby, interim chairperson of the board of directors to Deer at Friday’s press conference, “Kahnawake is very proud of you and we all wish you success with your education goals. We hope that you bring your expertise back to Kahnawake after your graduation.”
The scholarship fund was established in 2011 as a way to encourage students to enter into business and information technology programs, where only one percent of Kahnawake’s students are currently enrolled in.
Past recipients include Jasmine Dearhouse, Joseph Jocks, Bronson Cross, Karlie Marquis and Dawn Marquis.
“Morris Mohawk and Tewatohnhi’saktha have had a great relationship and certainly one of the things that we’re looking forward to in the years to come is hopefully broaden this project, in terms of training and seeing people develop for the future,” said Morris Mohawk CEO Alwyn Morris.
Deer decided to switch programs this year after feeling like the creative writing program she was enrolled in wouldn’t provide many career opportunities following graduation.
“Academically, it offered me artistic freedom that other programs did not offer. But, for a career, I felt pretty terrified that it would no doubt lead to a life of grant proposals, instability, a constant stream of rejection letters from publishers,” said Deer.
In other words, her career would be held in the hands of other people such as grant selection committees and publishers. Not only did she express that thought being terrifying, but something that would be a hindrance from pursuing her “ultimate” goal of independence.
“I want to be independent in every sense of the word: physically, academically, financially, economically, creatively and so on,” said Deer.
For Deer, the goal is less about coming out of the program with a specific job title in mind, and more about potentially having a positive impact on the community’s overall wellbeing.
“I want to see, and to the best of my ability, be involved with, a fully independent and prosperous community rich with a plethora of vibrant businesses,” said Deer, “Just knowing that I have potential to contribute to the overall wellbeing of our community is all the motivation I need to finish my studies at JMSB.”

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