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Vision and Mission Statements



The American Indian Studies Department will provide a forward-looking approach to and engagement with American Indian epistemologies. This includes a critical reexamination of the politics of sovereignty and a comparative focus on Original Nations, communities, and peoples as distinct polities in the Americas. Our graduates will be prepared to work with and for American Indian governments, businesses, agencies, organizations, and communities in a variety of fields, such as health care, education, and the nonprofit sector. The capstone courses for the Major will engage students to apply their knowledge through direct engagement with Original Nations and non-Indian communities. 


The American Indian Studies Department provides students with a research, community, and place-based program of study. We accomplish this through an integrated approach to understanding tribal knowledge about the diverse history, government-to-government relationships, community, culture, and social needs of American Indians in California and the US. Students in AIS learn to work effectively with and for Original Nations and tribal communities as they interface with non-Indian communities to exercise tribal sovereignty.