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What Is the History of Indigenous Peoples at Columbia University?

This Indigenous Peoples’ Day, we’ve gathered Columbia students, faculty, and staff to reflect on the indigenous history of the land on which the university sits, the activism of Native Americans on Columbia's campuses, and the indigenous scholarship that takes place at the university.

“My existence as an indigenous person is dedicated to furthering an understanding of our history, our culture, and our struggles in the present,” says Audra Simpson, Professor of Anthropology. “It is my entire body of research, it is my future research, my teaching, and my pedagogy. So, it is not just one day for me. It is my life.”

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Centering Native and Indigenous Voices

What Can Columbia Do Better?

Elsa Stamatopoulou, Director of the Indigenous Peoples’ Rights Program, explains how Columbia can further honor Indigenous Peoples and their history, beyond celebrating Indigenous Peoples' Day.

Resources for Combating Anti-Native and Indigenous Racism

University Life has provided a list of tools for anyone to use to center Native and Indigenous voices in conversations about racism and white supremacy in the U.S.

2022 Summer Program on Indigenous Rights and Policy

With a focus on human rights, this intensive immersion program provides an overview and analysis of the major questions in Indigenous affairs today. Applications are due October 31.

Indigenous Rights Online Course Extended Through May

Based on positive feedback, Columbia's Institute for the Study of Human Rights will continue to offer its Indigenous Peoples' Rights online course to all interested.


Holistic Healing With Plants: Modern and Traditional Herbalism
Hosted by the School of Nursing, this workshop will focus on how to identify, harvest, and use three native plants that grow in and around New York City, including information on traditional medicinal uses by Indigenous people of the Northeast.
Monday, October 11, 4:00 pm

Indigenous Representation in Media
From Reservation Dogs to Rutherford Falls, Native American representation has been on the rise. What does this mean for the Indigenous community, what’s the significance of taking control of one’s own narrative, and how can this be more than a moment?
Monday, October 11, 6:00 pm

The Role of Courts in Defending Indigenous Peoples' Rights
In honor of the second Indigenous Peoples' Day commemoration at Columbia University, join us for "The Role of Courts in Defending Indigenous Peoples' Rights" with Carla Fredericks, Steven Donziger, and Manaka Infante Suruta.
Tuesday, October 12, 7:00 pm

Environment, Climate, and Cultural Heritage: Native American Perspectives
A look at Indigenous knowledge of the land​ and the Native American emphasis on relationships, in the context of the disruption wrought by climate change and the damage caused by misuse of natural resources.
Friday, November 19, 5:00 pm

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