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Contact Us

As the university uses the fall as a transition semester in preparation for a broader return to campus in the winter semester, Aboriginal Student Services is continuing to work remotely. The team is available via phone, email and available for virtual/phone appointments as required. Find more COVID-19 information and updates.

Meet the RASS team and get in touch

The RASS team is made up of Indigenous staff and faculty as well as a peer support team made up of students who collaborate to raise awareness of Indigenous culture and heritage within an urban setting.

The team also offers a variety of community resources and support for students, including access to Elders, cultural workshops, cultural-based learning, advocacy, counselling and financial assistance support.

Sheila Saikkonen
Sheila Saikkonen, Administrative Assistant

“Hi, my name is Sheila Saikkonen (she/her). I am Ojibway and from the Atikameksheng Anishnawbek community. I am the Administrative Assistant and I am usually the first person you would contact when you come to Ryerson Aboriginal Student Services (RASS).  

There are many services we can provide to you, such as access to computers, printing, and faxing services to mention a few. Please feel free to contact me!”

Get in touch with Sheila

Phone: 416-979-5000, ext. 557699
Emailssaikkon@ryerson.ca 
Room: KHW-389-H
Availability: Monday to Friday |  9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Sloan (Jo) Miller
Sloan (Jo) Miller, Traditional Counsellor

“Hello, my name is Sloan (Jo) Miller (she/her).“I am of Mi’kmaq and Celtic ancestry from Shubenacadie, Nova Scotia. I am passionate about the importance of education and social justice issues. I am also a strong anti-colonial Indigenous activist and anti-violence trainer, advocate and educator.

I have worked at RASS in various positions for over a year, first as an Outreach Facilitator, then as the Traditional Counsellor and Cultural Programmer, and also served as Interim Academic Adviser in 2020 to 2021.”

Get in touch with Sloan

Phone: 416-979-5000, ext. 552423
Emailjoanne.miller@ryerson.ca
Room: KHW-389-F
Availability: Monday to Friday | 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Diane Simone
Diane Simone, Aboriginal Learning Support Facilitator

“Hello, my name is Diane Simone (she/her). I am the Aboriginal Learning Support Facilitator for Ryerson Aboriginal Student Services. My mother's family identifies as part Mi'kmaq, originally from Saint John, New Brunswick.

In my role at RASS, I provide writing workshops throughout the year and am available to meet one-on-one to assist students with academic support. If you need writing assistance, please do not hesitate to get in touch. I look forward to meeting you soon!”

Get in touch with Diane

Phone: 416-979-5000, ext. 553326
Email: dsimone@ryerson.ca
Room: KHW-389-B
Availability: Monday to Friday | 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Samantha Mandamin
Samantha Mandamin, Aboriginal Academic Support Advisor

“Ahnii, my name is Samantha Mandamin (she/her). I am from the Wiikwemkoong Unceded Indian Reserve, located on Manitoulin Island, Ontario.

At RASS, I engage and assist Indigenous students, faculty and community members in their interactions with the university. I provide support, education and academic assistance to students and those wishing to return to education.

From admission to graduation, I provide emotional, spiritual, physical and mental support to students. Counselling provides a safe space to discuss struggles that students encounter with education systems. I connect students to university services including learning support, financial services, Indigenous tutors, counsellors, and other resources.

It is my passion to assist Indigenous students succeed in their educational journey. Chi-Miigetch.”

Get in touch with Sam

Phone: 416-979-5000, ext. 552609
Email: smandamin@ryerson.ca
Room: KHW-389-F
Availability: Monday to Friday | 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Brian Norton
Brian Norton, Program Coordinator

"Ahnee, boozhoo, my name is Brian Norton (he/him). I am Anishnaabe from Chimnissing First Nation, also known as Beausoleil on the shores of southern Georgian Bay.

As Program Coordinator for Ryerson Aboriginal Student Services, I am part of a team of people who share the belief of being life-long advocates for higher learning. Along with my colleagues at RASS, we strive to deliver services that are essential for the success of the Indigneous students at Ryerson."

Get in touch with Brian

Phone: 416-979-5000, ext. 553327
Email: bnorton@ryerson.ca
Room: KHW-366-A
Availability: Monday to Friday | 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. 

Sarena Johnson, Liaison, Student Affairs

"Hello, my name is Sarena Johnson (she/her) and I’m a member of Caldwell First Nation. I was born and raised in Toronto and have Lenni Lenape, Plains Cree Metis and Anishnaabe ancestry. I have been working with Student Affairs in communications, and recently started a partnership position with RASS and Aboriginal Initiatives. This role includes some event planning and coordination, development of partnerships between student service departments, and assistance with student programming.” 

Get in touch with Sarena

Phone: 416-979-5000, ext. 554704
Email: sarena.johnson@ryerson.ca

Aboriginal Peer Support team

The Aboriginal Peer Support Program is dynamic and made up of Aboriginal, Métis and Inuit students students at Ryerson who conduct outreach and provide peer support to other Aboriginal students on-campus.

The Peer Support team can provide you with information and resources about our educational, social and cultural events. You can also learn how to get involved and connected with the Indigenous community at Ryerson.

Get in touch with the Aboriginal Peer Support team

Phone: 416-979-5000, ext. 556660
Email: abpeers@ryerson.ca
Room: KHW-372
Availability: Monday to Friday | 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.