American Indian Heritage Month is a celebration of survival

BLACKSBURG, Va., Oct. 17, 2005 – Celebration of survival and a look at issues facing American Indians today are two of the themes to be addressed during American Indian Heritage Month 2005 at Virginia Tech. The public is invited to join the American Indian community in its “Celebration of Survival.”

A film and discussion of In Whose Honor held on Wednesday, Oct. 19 at 7:30 p.m. at the Black Cultural Center in Squires Student Center is a discussion of racism in sports and higher education.

On Wednesday, Oct. 26, the film Dreamkeeper will show at 7:30 p.m. in the Black Cultural Center. The film tells of a Lakota teenager who reluctantly agrees to drive his grandfather from their South Dakota reservation to an All-Nations PowWow in Albuquerque, N.M. A discussion of what the teenager learns will follow the film.

Highlighting American Indian Heritage Month is “An Evening with Dr. Tai{Taiaiake} Alfred and Dr. Jeff Corntassel” on Thursday, Nov. 10, at 7 p.m. at the Inn at Virginia Tech and Skelton Conference Center. Taiaiake Alfred is an educator and orator from the Mohawks of Kahnawake in the Iroquois Confederacy. He is the founding director and a professor in the University of Victoria’s Indigenous Governance Programs. Corntassel, a former Virginia Tech professor in the American Indian Studies Program, is a Tsalagi citizen (Cherokee Nation) and is now an assistant professor and graduate advisor in the Indigenous Governance Program at the University of Victoria. The two will discuss the theme Celebration of Survival.

A public celebration of Indigenous People’s Day will be held on the Drillfield at a date to be announced.

Sponsors of American Indian Heritage Month include Virginia Tech’s American Indian Studies Program and Appalachian Studies Program in the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies, Multicultural Awareness Programs, and the American Indian Heritage Month Steering Committee.

Anyone who has a disability or desires assistance or accommodations should contact Multicultural Programs and Services at (540) 231-6023 or TDD/PC at (800)-828-1120.

For further information about American Indian Heritage Month, contact Rosa Jones at the Multicultural Programs and Services Office at (540) 231-8584.