The Summer internship for INdigenous peoples in Genomics Canada (SING Canada) is an initiative associated with the Indigenous Science, Technology, and Society Research and Training Program (Indigenous STS) at the University of Alberta. Connected to the global SING Consortium, SING Canada is an annual one-week intensive workshop designed to build Indigenous governance capacity and scientific knowledge by training undergraduate and graduate students, postdoctoral, and community fellows in the genomics, bioinformatics, critical Indigenous studies, and anticolonial approaches to bioethics.

This week-long, all expenses paid residential program invites Indigenous participants to engage in hands-on classroom, lab, and field training in genomic sciences and Indigenous knowledge. The curriculum includes an introduction to leading advances in and Indigenous approaches to genomics through the lenses of critical Indigenous, Two-Spirit & queer, and feminist theories. Participants explore the uses, misuses, opportunities, and limitations of genomics as a tool for Indigenous peoples’ governance. SING Canada is distinguished by its dedication to critical Indigenous studies and an emphasis on centering the local contexts (i.e. political, legal, biological, and Indigenous) where the workshops take place, including the human and other-than-human relations that have implications variously for human and non-human health, environments, and societies.

This is not your average summer science training program!

Who can participate?

The programme is open to First Nations, Metis and Inuit Peoples wanting to understand better the opportunities and challenges associated with genomic research as well as critical technical, cultural and ethical issues.

We encourage applications from University students in any discipline as well as people with a strong cultural, community or business background. An understanding of genetics is beneficial but not necessary for attendance in this programme.

How much does it cost?

Because of the generous support of our key sponsors, Genome Canada and the Silent Genomes Project, we are able to provide up to 15 fully funded internships.  All costs, including travel from across Canada, meals and accommodation, are fully covered.

Why Genomics?

Genomics is the study of genomes, the complete set of genes or DNA belonging to an individual or group.  It is a powerful and rapidly advancing field of research that can be used to learn about health, history, and the environment.

Genomic research has the potential to bring benefits to Indigenous people and communities but also has the potential to cause harm. Despite the importance of genomics for Indigenous people and communities, Indigenous people are currently underrepresented in this field. SING aims to develop and support the next generation of Indigenous researchers and professionals to ensure that future genomic research is ethical and inclusive.

Genomics may be of interest to people from diverse backgrounds (e.g. healthcare, research, conservation) and has many applications (e.g. medicine, ancestry testing, provenancing of human remains, biodiversity and conservation).

What’s the benefit?

We hope that attending SING will develop participants’ confidence in the scientific and ethical issues relating to genomic research that concerns Indigenous people and communities and empower them to move the field of Indigenous genomics in a positive direction. We also aim to develop a community of scholars and professionals who can continue to support each other and the goals of SING.


SING Canada is part of a global SING Consortium that was founded in the United States in 2011.  Over the past decade, SING programs have developed not only in Canada but in Aotearoa and Australia.  New programs are developing in Mexico and Scandinavia.  

The consortium hosts a global meeting every few years to bring together Indigenosus genomics researchers and students from across the globe.  

For more information about the SING Consortium please visit www.singconsortium.org


The site of the first SING workshop in 2011, SING USA has hosted workshops at multiple universities around the United States to include many diverse tribal nations’ perspectives.

SING Australia

Key goals of SING Australia include capacity-building for Indigenous people and facilitating the expression of Indigenous voices and perspectives on genomic research.

SING Aotearoa

The SING Aotearoa programme is designed to develop an Indigenous understanding of genomics alongside some of the best researchers in New Zealand and the world.


SING Canada would not be possible without the financial and in-kind support of our regular sponsors.  Many thanks to the organizations that have helped us with student travel, equipment purchase, expertise and general encouragement.