Your degree in First Nations and Endangered Languages

Skills you’ll develop

During your First Nations and Endangered Languages degree, you’ll develop important skills for the documentation, conservation and revitalization of endangered Indigenous languages while learning about ethical research protocols, community-responsive scholarship, and meaningful partnership with Indigenous communities. 

These skills may include:

  • Influencing scholarly and public representations of Indigenous languages and cultures within and beyond the academy
  • Communicating to diverse audiences the central and interconnected relationship between language, land, and oral history for Indigenous communities
  • Developing, practicing and promoting community protocols and perspectives for ethical engagement with First Nations peoples and their languages
  • Engaging productively and transparently with community needs, priorities, and local research agendas appropriate to each context
  • Designing and implementing language reclamation and revitalization projects drawing on interdisciplinary methodologies, predicated on community-based consultation, participation, and collaboration
  • Perceiving, distinguishing and transcribing speech sounds of endangered languages, and understanding their relationships with community-based orthographies
  • Recognizing and discovering grammatical structures of endangered languages for the benefit of community-based maintenance and revitalization
  • Building individual and community capacity for the application of contextually-appropriate best practices, archival standards and current technologies in multimedia language documentation through recording and archiving
  • Promoting or engaging with family-based and community-based language transfer
  • Using archival and other legacy resources as vehicles to develop and enhance First Nations language fluency

Career possibilities

Career opportunities vary widely across a range of fields including Indigenous organizations, education, government, business, media, museums, law, and others.

There are many career paths that can combine your academics, skills, and experience with your different interests. Read through the job titles below for ideas. Some career options may require further education or training.

Visit the National Occupational Classification website to research basic requirements and responsibilities of jobs in your field.

  • Art conservator/curator
  • Campaign manager
  • Charitable organization director
  • Child and youth worker
  • Communications manager
  • Community culture and language worker
  • Community development worker
  • Community program manager
  • Community service worker
  • Copywriter
  • Counsellor
  • Cultural site or museum interpreter
  • Digital storyteller
  • Documentarian/Filmmaker
  • Educational policy analyst/advisor
  • Economic development officer
  • Employment counsellor
  • Employment equity officer
  • Environmental advisor
  • Event planner
  • Fundraiser
  • Government official
  • Grant writer
  • Heritage interpreter
  • Heritage planner
  • Human resources manager
  • Human rights officer
  • Intergovernmental affairs officer
  • Journalist
  • Language archivist
  • Language instructor
  • Lawyer
  • Legislator
  • Lobbyist
  • Media/Information consultant
  • Museum administrator
  • Museum educator
  • Policy advisor
  • Political organizer
  • Public affairs officer
  • Public opinion interviewer
  • Public relations specialist
  • Rural development officer
  • Social enterprise developer
  • Social policy researcher
  • Speech writer
  • Student services counsellor
  • Teacher/Professor
  • Tourism consultant
  • University research assistant
  • Urban and land use planning
  • Youth worker

Make the most of your program

Your experiences will open doors to new opportunities and help you understand your values and interests.

  • Alumni profiles
    Learn about the experiences of past and present students from your program.
  • Endangered Language Fund
    Browse various resources for revitalizing and reclaiming languages.
  • Arts Indigenous Student Advising
    Receive academic and cultural support from Arts Indigenous Student Advising to help meet your educational and personal goals at UBC.
  • Indigenous Collegium
    Connect with an Indigenous elder or UBC professor, make lunch or meet up with friends between classes, or take part in cultural practices, such as smudging, and community practices like talking circles. 
  • AMS Indigenous Committee
    Join the Indigenous Committee, which is committed to bringing Indigenous ways of knowing and being into the UBC Alma Mater Society (AMS) as well as the larger UBC institution by hosting events, providing support to Indigenous clubs, and advocating for Indigenous rights on campus. All Indigenous students who pay fees to the AMS can join the committee.
  • Unceded Airwaves
    Tune into Unceded Airwaves, a bi-weekly radio program produced by CiTR’s Indigenous Collective. We are committed to centering Indigenous voices and offering alternative narratives that empower Indigenous people and their stories. 
  • UBC Indigenous events
    Connect with students and faculty members at a variety of events.
  • Indigenous Undergraduate Research Mentorship Program
    Apply in term 1 to get paired with a faculty member in this four-month research mentorship program for Indigenous students.
  • Departmental research opportunities
    Reach out directly to faculty members to ask about potential research positions.
  • Indigenous Bursaries Search Tool
    Search for post-secondary scholarship opportunities for Indigenous students across Canada.
  • Further academic studies
    Learn about various graduate and professional program opportunities at UBC, across Canada, and internationally.
  • First Peoples’ Cultural Council
    Find initiatives, grants, or programs related to reviving Indigenous languages, arts, and cultures within Canada.
  • Grants and funding opportunities
    Get sources of funding for Indigenous language, arts and cultural projects.
  • Indigenous organizations and services
    Gain volunteer and work experience in local organizations using this BC Government guide.
  • Indigenous Youth Internship Program
    Apply in term 2 for a 12-month paid internship sponsored by the BC Government.

Build your network

Employers often hire people they know, so help them get to know you. You can build your network through clubs, classes, informational interviews, and more. There are so many ways to make connections and find mentors.

The professional associations below are also great resources for meeting people, learning about specific industries, and accessing job and volunteer opportunities. Most have reduced membership rates for students and new grads.

Connect with alumni on LinkedIn

Find UBC First Nations and Endangered Languages graduates on LinkedIn to learn about where they’re working, and their career and academic paths.

More information

From your Arts degree, you’ll develop skills and experiences that can translate into many career paths. Check out other things you can do with your Arts degree.