Multi-Ethnic Student Affairs

About Native American Heritage Month

Although the first "American Indian Day" was celebrated in May 1916 in New York, a month-long recognition of Native Americans did not happen until 1990. That year, President George H.W. Bush signed a joint congressional resolution designating November as National American Indian Heritage Month. Since then, the title has expanded to celebrate the heritage, history, art, and traditions of American Indians and Alaska Natives.

Each year, we honor the histories, cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors had lived in North America for hundreds of years. MESA and the Native American Student Association (NASA) collaborate with campus partners to bring a wide range of events that celebrate Native American culture with the University of Michigan campus community. 


Feast to Honor Community
When: Sunday, November 3rd from 3-5PM
Where: 1443 Washtenaw Ave. Ann Arbor, MI 48105
Facebook Event, Happening @ Michigan

Please join the Native American Student Association in honoring Alphonse Pitawanakwat and Kayla Gonyon at this year's Native American Heritage Month (NAHM) opening feast. Alphonse and Kayla have contributed profusely to the maintenance of Anishinaabemowin in LSA's American Culture department. Beyond the University, Alphonse has contributed to the retention of culture and language in his community. Come bask in comfort food and good vibes as we share our appreciation for one another. 

Two Spirit Identity: Indigenous Gender & Sexuality
Wednesday, November 6, 2019 from 7:30-9PM
Where: Michigan League, Vandenberg Room, 911 N. University Ave Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Facebook Event, Happening @ Michigan
This lecture by Two Spirit artist Rebecca Lynn will explore the complexities of gender and sexuality within Native American communities and the ways these views continue to be impacted by colonization efforts. 

Study Wellness
When: Sunday, November 10th, 12-3pm
Where: Vicky Barner Lounge at Alice Lloyd Residence Hall
Join the Native American Student Association for a relaxed study time at the new reopened Vicky Barner Lounge. Learn more about Vicky Barner's legacy on this MHousing webpage.

A History of Boarding Schools 
Monday, November 11th from 12-1:30PM
Where: Hatcher Graduate Library Gallery, 913 S. Unviersity Ave Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Facebook Event, Happening @ Michigan
Heather Bruegl, a member of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin, shares a lecture on the government's policy to work Native Americans into mainstream society in the 1800s by removing Native children from their homes and sending them to boarding schools. Learn how the schools operated and what we did to help overcome the abuse. 

Indigenous Identity and Resistance in the Archives 
When: Tuesday, November 12th, 4-6pm
Where: Hatcher Graduate Library, Gallery Room
Happening @ Michigan 
Visit the Special Collections Research Center to see a collection of documents related to the histories, identities, and resistance to coloniczation af the indigenous peoples of North America. Light refreshments provided. 

Fridays in the Wilderness: Indigeneity in Space and Story 
When: Thursday, November 14th, 11:30-1pm
Where: Hatcher Graduate Library, Gallery Lab
Happening @ Michigan
What's the connection between Netflix's Lost in Space reboot, Star Trek, Avatar, and a 300 year old adventure novel? How does a story about shipwreaks speak to the "discovery" of America? How are contemporary Indigenous artists responding to the history of erasure and misrepresentation that Robinson Crusoe illustrates? 
Join us for a conversation about Robinson Crusoe, television, Native American literature, and the impact respresnetation has on Indigenous peoples.
Register here for a complementary lunch. 

Indigenous Healing in Action
When: Thursday, November 14th, 7:30-9:30pm
Where: Hatcher Graduate Library, Gallery Room
Happening @ Michigan
This event will showcase indigenous art in many forms while highlighting how art and movement contribute to overall wellness for those participating in its creation and those watching and experiencing it. Centered around Dr. Bethany Hughes's work in Native performance, we invite The Aadizookaan to share their perspective through a creative storytelling experience and will discuss and learn about relationships with indigenous traditional movement around the world. 

When: Friday, November 15th, All Day
Where: Everywhere!
Facebook Event 
Established in 2011, Rock Your Mocs, is a worldwide Native American & Indigenous Peoples social media event held annually during Native American Heritage Month. People wear their moccasins, take a photo or video or story, add the hashtag #RockYourMocs and upload to social media. A day for Indigenous people to stand united through tribal individuality to symbolically wear moccasins and honor our ancestors/indigenous peoples worldwide. 

Discovery of a New Nation: Native Americans and the Beginning of the United States
When: Friday, November 15th, 7-8:30pm
Where: Ann Arbor District Library Downtown - 343 S 5th Ave
AADL Event Link
Heather Bruegl, a member of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin, provides information on U.S. History but from the perspective of Native Americans. Native History predates 1492. Native peoples have been on the North American continent for centuries before colonization began. This lecture begins in the 1100's and ends just before the Civil War in 1860. 

Our Traditions, with AIHFS
When: Friday, November 22nd, 12-3pm
Where: 1443 Washtenaw Ave (formerly called Trotter)
Happening @ Michigan
Facebook Event
Join the Native American Student Association for a delicious meal featuring recipes inspired by Sioux Chef Sean Sherman including buffalo meatballs and three sisters stew. Community member, Yebishawn OldShield, will be speaking on the significance of Native American Heritage Month as well as native winter customs and activities like winter solstice as we prepare ourselves in a good way for this time of year.

American Indian Health and Family Services (AIHFS) will be on site offering free private health wellness screenings for anyone who is interested. 

Native American Heritage Events