The month of November is Native American Heritage Month. The entire month is designated as a tribute to the efforts and contributions of the first Americans.
Celebration regarding the recognition of Native Americans started at the beginning of the 20th century.
Arthur C. Parker, of Seneca descent, convinced the Boy Scouts of America in 1915 to set aside a day with the purpose of appreciating and respecting the first Americans.
Native American appreciation has grown from one day to a whole month, and has been adopted nationwide. President George H. W. Bush officially declared November Native American Heritage Month in 1990.
As well as being celebrated on the national level, Native American Heritage Month is equally present locally, especially on North Dakota State’s campus.
Native American culture is incredibly prevalent and formative in North Dakota’s history and culture. This month offers many opportunities for one to learn about the legacy of our nation’s people and be immersed in an educational, cultural experience.
The NDSU Office of Multicultural Programs is sponsoring a series of educational events throughout the month in celebration of Native American Heritage Month.
The first of these events was an opening ceremony that took place this past Thursday in the Hidatsa room. This event consisted of tribal leaders from the area speaking about their homes.
This year’s campus events pertaining to Native American heritage are emphasizing on regional affairs and topics.
Upcoming events include “Tribal Nations Research Group, Data to Knowledge in Native American Communities” at 1 p.m. Wednesday in the Memorial Union Mandan room.
On Nov. 19 Eric Longie presents “Spirit Lake Tribe and Native American People” at 10 a.m. in the Hidatsa room. The next day at noon, the NDSU American Indian Public Resource Center staff will detail their experience with North Dakota tribes in the Hidatsa room.
Many other Native American Heritage Month events continue throughout the entirety of November and can be found online on NDSU’s website.
The overarching goal of Heritage Month is to give Native Americans an opportunity to share their rich culture and tradition with the rest of the country.
What began 100 years ago as only a day of recognition has now turned into a whole month of celebrating the positive impacts Native Americans have on the formation of modern America.