North Island College and Indigenous Education Council joint statement in memory of Fran Prince

Fran Prince sharing her traditional knowledge at the K'ómoks Big House on May 15, 2019.

Fran Prince was always the first to acknowledge and thank people for their work. In that way, NIC and the Indigenous Education Council would like to recognize the lasting impact of Fran Prince in the lives of students, communities, and education in the region.

Fran Prince was a powerful advocate for education across the region, ensuring that the voices of Indigenous communities were heard and respected. 

Her voice was instrumental to ensuring college leaders and government understood the educational needs of Indigenous peoples throughout the region.

As a Community Elder and Indigenous Education Council Chair, Fran commanded the room with knowledge and passion. In her six years as Chair, she formalized the role of the Indigenous Education Council – transforming it from the Aboriginal Education Advisory Council to a decision-making body, which has become a respected model across BC’s post-secondary system today.

In the creation of the annual Aboriginal Service Plan, Fran insisted that government recognize the independent educational priorities of Nations in the West Coast, Northern, and Central regions. She knew that these unique voices, and differing needs, could not supersede each other. 

Her knowledge lives on through the development of NIC’s practices and her guidance in the development of an Indigenous Education logo.

But most importantly, Fran’s voice and fierce determination lives on in her dedication to students and student support.

During her time as Chair, she helped secure more than $2.2 million in funding for students supports, which has made a significant difference in the lives of students and communities. She wrote letters to ensure programs had ongoing funding for students to be able to move through their programming from year to year. And, Fran made sure that Indigenous students at each campus could rely on an Elder in Residence to support them.