Brayden Omeasoo-Steinhauer - Ermineskin Cree Nation
Role model pursuing career in education

By Sam Laskaris
Cando Writer

Brayden Omeasoo-SteinhauerBesides continuing his own academic interests, Brayden Omeasoo-Steinhauer is also considered a positive role model for his First Nation.

Omeasoo-Steinhauer, a member of Ermineskin Cree Nation in Alberta, recently completed his third year of Bachelor of Education studies from the University of Alberta.

He’s expected to complete his degree requirements in the spring of 2024, following one more year of studies.

Omeasoo-Steinhauer, who is 21, is also in his second year of serving as the youth advisory board member for the Neyaskweyahk Group of Companies Inc., the economic arm of his First Nation.

“It was a newly created position in my community,” he said. “I was keen to do it. They’re leading change in my community.”

Omeasoo-Steinhauer’s two-year term on the board is up this coming November. Ideally, he would like to be selected to serve another term as well.

“They’ve grown so much in the past 10 years,” he added of the Neyaskweyahk Group of Companies Inc. “They’ve gone from five companies to 13.”

As the youth advisory board member, Omeasoo-Steinhauer is expected to attend quarterly meetings.

Besides bringing a youth voice to the board, he’s also counted on to help organize a community business fair, targeting individuals aged 16-30 who have an interest in joining the workforce.

Omeasoo-Steinhauer is also exploring the possibility of organizing a pilot project, an Elder/Youth exchange this fall.

“We do youth things and we do Elder things separately,” Omeasoo-Steinhauer said. “But we don’t do things with the two groups together.”

Omeasoo-Steinhauer is also looking forward to an event that he’ll be involved with. He’s one of six individuals from across Canada that have been selected to be on the National Youth Panel for this year’s Cando Conference.

The conference, which will be staged in Membertou, N.S., begins on June 26 and continues until June 29.

“I think it’s such an honour,” Omeasoo-Steinhauer said of his selection to the panel.

The half dozen panelists throughout the country were chosen for their strengths, initiatives, accomplishments, entrepreneurial spirit and participation within their communities.

Omeasoo-Steinhauer is hoping to continue being someone youth look up to in the future as well.

“The goal is definitely to be an educator in any capacity,” he said.

He anticipates he’ll continue his own education after earning his undergrad degree.

“I do want to go into graduate studies,” he said.

He’s hoping to enroll in the Masters of Management program, a 10-month, fast-track program offered through the University of Calgary.

Omeasoo-Steinhauer has completed all of his post-secondary education thus far remotely. He said his living and travel expenses have been greatly reduced since he has been able to continue living in his First Nation house.

He lives in a house with seven other family members, including his mother and his two siblings and their spouses and children.

“It’s quite a busy house,” he said. “But I created my own sanctuary where I can go for my own quiet space.”

Omeasoo-Steinhauer added if he does indeed pursue his Master’s degree, he’ll be required to attend in-person classes for that.

Omeasoo-Steinhauer is also on the planning committee for Cando’s sixth annual economic development youth summit.

This event, which runs Aug. 14-17, will be held at the Grey Eagle Resort on Tsuut’ina Nation, adjacent to Calgary.