Institutional Land Acknowledgement

Mount Royal University is situated on an ancient and storied land that is steeped in ceremony and history that, until recently, was occupied exclusively by people indigenous to this place. With gratitude and reciprocity, Mount Royal acknowledges the relationships to the land and all beings, and the songs, stories and teachings of the Siksika Nation, the Piikani Nation, the Kainai Nation, the Îethka Stoney Nakoda Nation (consisting of the Chiniki, Bearspaw and Goodstoney Nations), the people of the Tsuut’ina Nation, and the Métis.

At the verbal negotiations held to discuss Treaty 7 between the nations and the Crown and Canadian government, Indigenous peoples assumed hereditary lands would be shared and a cooperative future would be built together that was to last as long as the grass grows, the sun shines and the rivers flow. However, many of the verbal promises made to these nations were not reflected in the written version of Treaty 7, created by the Crown and Canadian government. Even then, many promises that were included in the written version have been broken.

What followed were policies of cultural genocide and assimilation that caused profound harm. The original people of these lands were confined to reserves, prohibited from pursuing traditional practices and forced to send their children to residential schools. Rather than building meaningful and mutually beneficial relationships, there was dispossession and exploitation in systems of economic and social marginalization.

As such, Mount Royal University is committed to advancing the success of Indigenous learners and respectfully supporting Indigenous cultural identities and integrity, leading to a good life in all its aspects. Mount Royal will challenge settler colonialism and systemic racism and discrimination by addressing the legacy of broken promises and rebuilding the relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples. This includes those who now live at the confluence of the Elbow and Bow rivers, a place referred to by the Siksika Nation, the Piikani Nation and the Kainai Nation as Moh’kinstis, by the Îethka Stoney Nakoda Nations as Wîcîspa, and by the Tsuut’ina Nation as Guts’ists’i. Mount Royal will meet these goals by committing to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action and adopting and applying the principles of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.



Since Mount Royal’s first land acknowledgement was first published on our website in 2016, the University has grown and our collective understanding of this land and its history has deepened. As such, Mount Royal revised its institutional acknowledgement. This process began in 2023 and involved discussions with Elders and input from Indigenous and non-Indigenous members of the Mount Royal community.

This updated land acknowledgement embodies the perspective of a treaty relationship. Briefly stated, it is about treaty-making that counters a long history of treaty-breaking. It is grounded in the standpoint that we are all treaty people, and aligns with the foundational concept of ethical space, as described in the 2023-2030 University Strategic Plan.


Intended use

The updated land acknowledgement represents Mount Royal University and is intended for use at formal ceremonies and institutional events, and in all major institutional publications (digital, print and online). Though it may be used as a guide, it is not intended to replace personalized land acknowledgements, which can be used for informal gatherings, classes, meetings, functions, presentations and any events or materials representing an individual or group.


Next steps

In August 2024, this webpage will be expanded to feature more land acknowledgement information and resources, including historical context, a pronunciation guide, usage guidelines, and tips for developing personalized land acknowledgements.



For any questions relating to the updated land acknowledgement, please contact:

Office of Indigenization and Decolonization