The Yale Group for the Study of Native America (YGSNA) began in 2003 as an interdisciplinary working group interested in topics relating to Native America. It has become Yale’s overarching graduate student as well as scholarly working group dedicated to study of Native American and Indigenous peoples. Generally meeting twice a month during the academic year and usually on Tuesdays, YGSNA showcases works in progress and is composed of graduate students, faculty, and staff from across Yale. National speakers in the humanities, the fields of law and journalism, and other scholarly disciplines have also presented at YGSNA.
As a forum for scholarly development, YGSNA provides graduate students and postdoctoral fellows opportunities to solicit responses to academic articles, dissertation chapters, and other published works. Many recent YGSNA presentations have led to published and/or forthcoming work in The American Indian Culture and Research Journal, The Pacific Historical Review, and the Journal of American History. YGSNA members similarly have presented work at a wide range of scholarly venues and institutions, including the Alaskan Native Studies Conference, the American Society for Ethnohistory, the Newberry Library, and the American Anthropological Association. YGSNA students have also received multi-year fellowships from such prominent institutions as the Ford Foundation, the Trudeau Foundation, and the Fulbright Institute of International Education.
Additional YGSNA activities have included visits to museums and archival collections, social events, and international conferences. In June 2012, many YGSNA graduate students volunteered as well as presented at the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association (NAISA) meetings at Mohegan Sun, which Yale co-hosted, while in June 2013, over a dozen YGSNA graduate students attended the “Transnational Future of Indigenous Histories” conference held at Oxford University. YGSNA members also actively participate in the Newberry Library Consortium on American Indian and Indigenous Studies (NCAIS), and YGSNA has annually hosted the formal academic presentation of the Henry Roe Cloud Fellowship since its creation in 2010.