YGSNA Faculty Coordinator Helps to Convene Academy of Arts and Sciences “Native Americans and Academia” Gathering

YGSNA Faculty Coordinator Helps to Convene Academy of Arts and Sciences “Native Americans and Academia” Gathering
September 20, 2016

YGNSA Faculty Coordinator Ned Blackhawk (History and American Studies) recently joined three members of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (AAAS) as well as colleagues from across North America to convene the “Native Americans and Academia” gathering. Drawing upon the Academy’s dedicated resources for Academy members to bring leading scholars and cultural leaders together around areas of importance, this gathering of nearly twenty explored common themes and concerns related to Native Americans in academia. Bryan Brayboy (Arizona State), Doug Medin (Northwestern), Philip Deloria (University of Michigan), K. Tsianina Lomawaima (Arizona State), and Loren Ghiglione (Northwestern) joined Professor Blackhawk in coordinating and planning this gathering.

Participants from a broad range of disciplinary areas met to discuss pressing concerns within the field. From discussing ways of linking the various fields of Native American Studies, to increasing the visibility of scholarship by Native Americans, to showcasing the field’s overall importance and growing vibrancy to university leaders—many of whom are Academy members—discussions moved across interconnected areas of interests. All agreed about the need to also foster effective ways of mentoring and supporting Native American professional and graduate students.

Many not only shared aspects of their ongoing research, teaching, and service but also personal stories of navigating academia’s swift currents. Particular emphasis was placed on identifying best practices and common challenges that are found within both private and public institutions. Participants learned, in particular, about models of success emanating from many western campus communities, several of which have delegated tribal outreach offices as well as officers charged with mediating Indian student, tribal, and community concerns within their respective institutions as well as with neighboring tribal nations. (see, for example, https://americanindianaffairs.asu.edu) On the last day of the gathering, participants discussed the possibilities and potential structure of an edited journal, one that is anticipated to drawn upon not only the work of those gathered but also other areas of importance to the field.

As one of the leading as well as oldest independent policy research centers, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences is composed of over 5,000 fellows and honorary members from academic, business, arts, and government sectors. This gathering was the first dedicated to Native America in this institution’s over two-hundred-year history.

Participants included:

Kari A. B. Chew

University of Arizona

Amy E. Den Ouden

Associate Professor, Women’s and Gender Studies Department

University of Massachusetts Boston

N. Bruce Duthu

Sam Occom Professor of Native American Studies

Dartmouth College

Stephanie Fryberg

Associate Professor of American Indian Studies and Psychology

University of Washington

Nanibaa’ Garrison

Assistant Professor, Seattle Children’s Research Institute

University of Washington

Wesley Leonard

University of California, Riverside

Shelly Lowe

Executive Director, Native American Program

Harvard University

Teresa L. McCarty

GF Kneller Chair in Education and Anthropology

University of California Los Angeles

Maggie McKinley

Climenko Fellow and Lecturer on Law

Harvard University Law School

Mark Trahant

Independent journalist; Charles R. Johnson Endowed Professor of Journalism

University of North Dakota

Kyle Whyte

Associate Professor; Timnick Chair in the Humanities, Department of Philosophy and Department of Community Sustainability

Michigan State University

Melissa Tantaquidgeon Zobel

Medicine Woman

Mohegan Tribe, Connecticut