Friends and members of the Northwestern community gathered April 22 at Welsh-Ryan Arena for the University’s traditional Spring Pow Wow. Taking place on Earth Day, the second annual event was dedicated to “honoring the land.”
The Native American and Indigenous Student Alliance (NAISA), in collaboration with Multicultural Student Affairs and numerous Northwestern partners, hosted the Pow Wow, which was accented by traditional song, dance and dress.
“This Pow Wow was very special for my family,” said Jasmine Gurneau, director of Native American and Indigenous Affairs. “We spent months preparing to enter the circle and dance for the first time in our new regalia. Dancing into the arena, on Menominee lumber under our feet, with hundreds watching, will be a moment I never forget.”
“Dancing into the arena ... will be a moment I never forget.” – Jasmine Gurneau, director of Native American and Indigenous Affairs
President Michael Schill welcomed participants, noting students’ remarkable efforts to prepare for this celebration of Native and Indigenous communities.
Aaron Golding, associate director of Multicultural Student Affairs, echoed those sentiments.
“I couldn’t be prouder of the work of the NAISA students on Pow Wow planning committee,” Golding said. “This event establishes and strengthens relationships with Native communities from Chicagoland and Great Lakes region. Hearing that our guests felt welcomed by our Wildcat community and proud to have attended our Pow Wow fills my heart with joy. With those sentiments, and the rest of the announcements, there’s a lot to be excited for in the future.”
President Schill also noted the creation of a new Native American and Indigenous Studies Scholarship, which will be awarded to students who demonstrate a commitment to Native American and Indigenous issues.
In related news, Northwestern gathered Indigenous scholars from around the world in April as part of the American Education Research Association pre-conference. And in May, the Center for Native American and Indigenous Research will host its fifth annual research symposium to highlight the work of faculty, students and fellows.
Learn more about Northwestern’s Native American and Indigenous Initiatives, including NAISA.