Statement of Support for Students of Color

The Indigenous Studies Program (ISP) at the University of Kansas acknowledges and stands in solidarity with the student coalition Rock Chalk Invisible Hawk, the Black Student Association, and the many other students who shared their experiences and frustrations at the November 11, 2015 Town Hall forum. Their testimony documents that for many students, KU is not a safe or supportive academic environment. The ISP supports their call for immediate and effective action to address and correct the ongoing occurrences of violence and hate crimes based on race, sexual orientation, and gender.

With affiliate faculty across the College, in the Law School, and at KU Med, the ISP continues to work with other academic programs, centers, and offices across campus in the recruitment and retention of diverse faculty, staff, and students. We continue to partner with our colleagues at KU and at Haskell Indian Nations University to provide a welcoming, inclusive, and superior educational environment for Native American and other students in our program. We also note that at KU, the graduation rate for Native American undergraduates is less than fifty percent. This is one of the lowest graduation rates of any single group at the university. In addition, the number of incoming freshman identifying as Native American has dropped significantly in the last five years. KU can do better.

As scholars, artists, and scientists committed to the resurgence, well-being, and self-determination of Native American and Indigenous peoples and nations, we are steadfast in our resolve to work toward making KU a welcoming, supportive, and inclusive learning environment for all students.

– The ISP Director, Executive Committee, and Staff


About Indigenous Studies at KU

Welcome to the Indigenous Studies program at the University of Kansas. We accept applications to the M.A. program and graduate certificate on a rolling basis. Visit the Admission page for more information. We also offer an undergraduate minor in Indigenous Studies.

The Indigenous Studies master’s degree program provides students with in-depth knowledge of Indigenous peoples’ complex and diverse cultures and histories, as well as their impacts on the global society. Our multidisciplinary program offers students the advantage of studying relevant issues from a wide range of academic perspectives. The expertise of our affiliate faculty members includes Native American history, including medical and legal aspects; Indigenous literature; ethnobotany; Indigenous peoples' cultural survival and political activism; American Indian tribal governments; Indigenous geographies and cartographic history; Native American religions; and much more.

Our master’s program allows students to develop an area of specialization in which to build their expertise. Students can choose either a thesis or portfolio option to complete their degrees. We also offer a joint degree with the Law School.  Students may graduate with both the J.D. and an M.A. in Indigenous Studies in three to four years, making it an ideal choice for students interested in tribal law.  With rolling admissions, our program offers the flexibility to apply at your convenience and to begin your studies either in the fall or the spring semester.

Empowered by the resources on campus and in our community, we strive to provide unique learning opportunities for our students that go beyond the classroom. Please explore our website to learn more about what we have to offer, and feel free to contact us with questions.


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Local Events

"In the Shadow of Cortes: From Veracruz to Mexico City"
Photographic exhibit
September 1-December 15, 2016
Kenneth Spencer Research Library
1450 Poplar Lane, University of Kansas campus

Lawrence Stands With Standing Rock Winter Supply Drive
September 20-October 14 | Open 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday-Friday
Indigenous Studies Program Office, 1410 Jayhawk Boulevard, 6 Lippincott Hall
University of Kansas campus
Drop off blankets, winter clothing, nonperishable food, wood, canvas tarps, camping supplies and other necessities to support the Standing Rock water protectors.
Sponsored by KU's First Nations Student Assocation (FNSA).

Discussion about Standing Rock Sioux Reservation Pipeline Protest
Speakers: FNSA student, Profs. Sarah Deer, Elizabeth Kronk Warner, and Uma Outka
Tuesday, September 27 | 12:30 p.m.
107 Green Hall, University of Kansas campus
Sponsored by the KU Native American Law Students Association

2016 Native American Leadership Symposium
For high school freshmen through seniors
Tuesday, September 27 | 9 a.m.
Kansas Union

Lawrence Stands With Standing Rock March
Friday, September 30 | March starts at 4 p.m.
March begins at Constant Park and ends at 411 E. 9th Street
Sponsored by KU's First Nations Student Association (FNSA)

Lawrence Stands With Standing Rock Night of Music and Art
Friday, September 30 | 7 p.m.-10 p.m.
U.S. Department of Arts & Culture Field Office, 411 E. 9th Street
An evening of storytelling, music and art in solidarity with the Sacred Stone, Red Warrior, and Allied Camps

Haskell Visit Day for Indigenous Studies and Social Welfare
Monday, October 17 | starts at 9 a.m.
Jayhawk Room in the Kansas Union & Twente Hall
Haskell students interested in graduate school can learn more about the ISP and Social Welfare programs as well as life at KU

Experience Haskell: Sharing Our Past, Building Our Future
Sunday, October 9 | noon-3 p.m.
Haskell Indian Nations University, Lawrence, KS
Events include walking tours, panel discussions/Q&As, educational and cultural demonstrations, music, food, and more.
Free and open to the public

Indigenous Peoples Day: Conversations about Colonial and Education
Monday, October 10 | 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS
Free and open to the public, but registration required by October 3. Register at https://kstate.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_aVFD8U41izphJgV.
Sponsored by the KSU Indigenous Alliance, the College of Education (Dean's Office, Dept. of Educational Leadership, Diversity for Community Committee, and Social Justice Education Graduate Certificate), the KSU Provost's Office, The Dow Center for Multicultural and Community Studies at KSU Libraries, Arts and Sciences, English Dept., LGBTQ Resource Center, and the Multicultural Engineering Program.

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