Purdue's Native American Center to celebrate heritage month

October 25, 2010

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Purdue University's Native American Educational and Cultural Center will again celebrate Native American Heritage Month in November with several events.

The center serves as the cornerstone for celebrating Native American cultures on campus and in the community. This year, programs and events are centered on the perseverance of Native languages and the important impact oral history plays in the sustainability of many tribal nations, said center director Felica Ahasteen-Bryant.

Scheduled events include:

* 10-11:30 a.m. Nov. 3. Daryl Baldwin will give the keynote lecture in Stewart Center, Room 322. Baldwin, director of the Myaamia Project at Miami University in Ohio, will talk about efforts to revive the Myaamia (Miami) language. The last speakers of the language, which is native to Indiana, died in the early 1960s, but a revitalization movement began in the early 1990s.

* 1-3 p.m. Nov. 7. The NAECC is co-sponsoring a frybread cookoff at the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art in Indianapolis. The event at the museum, located at 500 W. Washington St., Indianapolis, is part of the city's Spirit and Place Festival.

* 2-3:30 p.m. Nov. 9. Native American multimedia artist and storyteller Monte Yellow Bird Sr. will make a presentation in Stewart Center, Room 322. Also known as Black Pinto Horse, he is artist in residence at the Eiteljorg Museum in Indianapolis.

* 2-3:30 p.m., 5-6:30 p.m. Nov. 18. White Wolf James, assistant curator of Native American art, history and culture at the Eiteljorg, will be featured in two storytelling circles, the first in the Hicks Undergraduate Library, Room B848, and the second in the Tippecanoe County Public Library, Room A, 627 South St., Lafayette.

* 5 p.m. Nov. 19. The Purdue chapter of the American Indian Science and Engineering Society and the Native American Student Association celebrate with a dinner and movie at the Native American Educational and Cultural Center. The center is at South Campus Courts, Building B, 503 S. Harrison St., West Lafayette.

* 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Nov. 20. The center will sponsor a trip to the Eiteljorg Museum in Indianapolis that includes a guided tour, participation in the Community Drumming circle and meeting Native American artists. Transportation will be provided. A fee is required. To register, contact Ahasteen-Bryant 765-494-4540 or e-mail fahastee@purdue.edu  by Nov. 15.

* 4-6 p.m., Nov. 30. The NAECC will screen the documentary film Our Spirits Dont Speak English, in Stewart Hall, Room 310. A discussion about the film, which is about a Native American boarding school, will follow.

Purdue has approximately 130 Native American students.

Established in 2007, the Native American Educational and Cultural Center fosters a culturally diverse and intellectually inclusive campus environment and serves as a "second home"  for Native American students on campus.

Writer: Greg McClure, 765-496-9711, gmcclure@purdue.edu

Source: Felica Ahasteen-Bryant, 765-494-4539, fahastee@purdue.edu