BSU to Host New Institute for Indigenous Education & Practice
Monday was Indigenous Peoples Day, and that morning Bemidji State University gave an important announcement: it had been chosen as the site for Minnesota State’s new Institute for Indigenous Education & Practice.
The institute is being supported by a two-year, $600,000 dollar grant from the Minnesota State system of colleges and universities. One of the main goals of the institute is to support Indigenous students and to increase access to higher education for said students.
Following the announcement was a presentation by BSU psychology professor Dr. John Gonzalez, who provided hard-hitting data regarding education, economic inequality, and race relations within the Bemidji area.
During Dr. Gonzalez’s presentation, he offered suggestions for how BSU can help support education for Native American students, as the new institute could prove to be a valuable resource for students and the community as a whole.
“If certain segments of our community are struggling, and having a difficult time … If we can improve the lives of those folks, and support them, then we’re all gonna benefit from that,” explained Dr. Gonzalez.
The Institute for Indigenous Education & Practice will begin releasing educational resources as early as next summer, and plans to pursue additional grant funding to support its future are in development.