Statement of Support for Students of Color
The Indigenous Studies Program (ISP) at the University of Kansas acknowledges and stands in solidarity with the student coalition Rock Chalk Invisible Hawk, the Black Student Association, and the many other students who shared their experiences and frustrations at the November 11, 2015 Town Hall forum. Their testimony documents that for many students, KU is not a safe or supportive academic environment. The ISP supports their call for immediate and effective action to address and correct the ongoing occurrences of violence and hate crimes based on race, sexual orientation, and gender.
With affiliate faculty across the College, in the Law School, and at KU Med, the ISP continues to work with other academic programs, centers, and offices across campus in the recruitment and retention of diverse faculty, staff, and students. We continue to partner with our colleagues at KU and at Haskell Indian Nations University to provide a welcoming, inclusive, and superior educational environment for Native American and other students in our program. We also note that at KU, the graduation rate for Native American undergraduates is less than fifty percent. This is one of the lowest graduation rates of any single group at the university. In addition, the number of incoming freshman identifying as Native American has dropped significantly in the last five years. KU can do better.
As scholars, artists, and scientists committed to the resurgence, well-being, and self-determination of Native American and Indigenous peoples and nations, we are steadfast in our resolve to work toward making KU a welcoming, supportive, and inclusive learning environment for all students.
– The ISP Director, Executive Committee, and Staff
About Indigenous Studies at KU
Welcome to the Indigenous Studies program at the University of Kansas. We accept applications to the M.A. program and graduate certificate on a rolling basis. Visit the Admission page for more information. We also offer an undergraduate minor in Indigenous Studies.
The Indigenous Studies master’s degree program provides students with in-depth knowledge of Indigenous peoples’ complex and diverse cultures and histories, as well as their impacts on the global society. Our multidisciplinary program offers students the advantage of studying relevant issues from a wide range of academic perspectives. The expertise of our affiliate faculty members includes Native American history, including medical and legal aspects; Indigenous literature; ethnobotany; Indigenous peoples' cultural survival and political activism; American Indian tribal governments; Indigenous geographies and cartographic history; Native American religions; and much more.
Our master’s program allows students to develop an area of specialization in which to build their expertise. Students can choose either a thesis or portfolio option to complete their degrees. We also offer a joint degree with the Law School. Students may graduate with both the J.D. and an M.A. in Indigenous Studies in three to four years, making it an ideal choice for students interested in tribal law. With rolling admissions, our program offers the flexibility to apply at your convenience and to begin your studies either in the fall or the spring semester.
Empowered by the resources on campus and in our community, we strive to provide unique learning opportunities for our students that go beyond the classroom. Please explore our website to learn more about what we have to offer, and feel free to contact us with questions.