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Dakota’s blog “I found my Way”


I Found My Way…

Sheko:li, my name is Dakota Ireland. My spirit name means She Gathers; I come from the Bear Clan within the Oneida Nation of the Thames. I have recently joined the staff here at the Museum of Ontario Archaeology. I am an Education Assistant Intern, so I help out with tours, workshops, activities, crafts, and other various areas of the museum, if needed. Before I got this job, my main background was in customer service and retail.

I wanted a change from my usual jobs, and I got started with Southwest Regional Healing Lodge, located in Muncey, as a Childcare Worker. I really enjoy working with children, so it was a step in the right direction. The job was not reliable though, so I continued searching. I wanted to work in a women’s shelter, but there were not any openings.

That is my true passion is to work with women and children. So, I kept searching for a job but I admit that it is difficult without the proper degree or diploma for the type of work that one wants to get into. I was looking on Facebook one day, and I came across the Museum of Ontario Archaeology page; then it struck me. I wonder if there are any jobs available there at the museum and it would definitely be a new experience!

So, I gave the Executive Director, Joan Kanigan, a call and inquired about job opportunities within the museum. We made a date to meet and we discussed the program that I am a part of right now which is through the London Training Centre. The London Training Centre will pay the funds for the client who gained an employment placement within a company open to hiring a new employee. The main goal is to give the youth an opportunity to gain experience in their area of interest of employment and to continue working within the company even after funds are no longer given, if possible. The museum was eligible for the program, so we signed together and here I am.

I love it here at the museum! I am learning so much about archaeology, the original inhabitants, and even about myself. I also am developing on previous skills that I already have, and building up new transferable skills. It’s so great being able to work with children, and educating them in the social science area because I feel it’s important for all people to know about the true history of what is now present day Ontario, Canada. I would like to be able to create my own workshop for the museum programs eventually, and to continue to facilitate it even if I am an occasional volunteer or guest workshop facilitator.

I want to thank the London Training Centre and the Museum of Ontario Archaeology for this opportunity! My future goal is to return to school in the Midwifery program, and follow my true passion.

– Dakota Ireland