In 1995 the College began a long-term process to address the relational disconnect that existed between the College, its Indigenous students and communities. The purpose of this initiative was to make our educational offerings more relevant in the lives of our Indigenous students, develop strong partnerships to support education within Indigenous communities, and develop ways for those communities to have a greater say in the College's educational initiatives.
Extensive consultation took place between members of the College and Indigenous representatives around education for indigenous communities and their needs from, and current relationships with, the College. The process and resulting action plan was documented in a publication called Stepping Stones to Improved Relationships: Aboriginal Equity and Coast Mountain College (formerly Northwest Community College), which became the road map for the College for the next 10 years.
In 1996 the College implemented a recommendation that, more than any other, has helped shape its cultural and educational relevancy to Indigenous communities and learners - the establishment of the College’s First Nations Council. Comprised of representatives from First Nations communities, the Council provides a process of direct consultation with all of the Indigenous communities in the College region, and direction in the strategic and operational planning of the College through a policy framework.