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Oct. 24, 2023

Native American Heritage Month celebration to feature speaker, dance performance, movie screening

By Kayla Holman, communication assistant

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Northwest Missouri State University’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion will celebrate Native American Heritage Month by hosting activities, including a speaker, a dance group and a movie night.

“The 2023 theme for national Native American Heritage Month, ‘Celebrating Tribal Sovereignty and Identity,’ embraces our Indigenous communities across Indian country and their many accomplishments,” Dr. Jessie Peter, senior coordinator of diversity and inclusion, said. “The events organized give us the opportunities to do just that.”

All of the month’s activities are free and open to the public.

Northwest will begin its celebration in collaboration with Student Activities Council by hosting Amber Rose Miskweminanocsqua (Raspberry Star Woman) Williams whose mission is to spread the message of indigenous women’s empowerment with a focus on identity, connection to culture, balancing tribal societal values and American societal values, and encouragement. The presentation begins at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 1, in the Charles Johnson Theater at the Olive DeLuce Fine Arts Building.

Williams was born and raised on the Shinnecock Reservation in Southampton, New York. She graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a Bachelor of Science in mass communications and a minor in business and was crowned Miss Native American USA in 2017.

Northwest’s celebration continues with an interactive activity featuring Beyond the Circle Dancers from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 8, in the J.W. Jones Student Union Ballroom. Beyond the Circle dancers perform throughout the United States, sharing their heritage and culture through traditional song and dance.

The University also will host a movie night from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 15, in the Student Union Boardroom. The featured movie, “Gather,” is a documentary about Native Americans in a growing movement to reconnect with spiritual and cultural identities that were destroyed by genocide. Dr. Robert Voss, a Northwest associate professor of history, will lead a discussion afterward.

The Office of Diversity and Inclusion will conclude its events with a presentation by Assistant Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion Dr. Shay Malone about land acknowledgment statements from noon to 1 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 16, in the Student Union Living Room. The Northwest statement recognizes that the University is built on the land of the Otoe (Jiwere), Ioway (Báxoǰe), Missouria (Nut’achi), Potawatomi (Neshnabé), and Sac and Fox (Thakiwaki and Meskwaki) communities.

For more information about Native American Heritage Month activities at Northwest, contact or 660.562.1105.


Dr. Mark Hornickel
Administration Building
Room 215