Faculty and Staff
The University of Montana has a growing number of American Indian faculty members across campus in a variety of disciplines and they can be found in almost every College. American Indian staff can also be found in a great variety of programs and academic units across campus. We have also included here American Indian graduate students that work as Teaching Assistants (TA's) or Research Assistant (RA's) across campus.
American Indian faculty are engaged in research, teaching, service and administration, much of it with a Native focus and with direct involvement in American Indian communities. American Indian faculty and staff also serve the larger Missoula community by volunteering their time and serving on local boards and committees.
Every effort was made to include information on all faculty, staff and graduate students that identify as American Indian at the University of Montana. However, American Indian faculty, staff and graduate students can decide not to have their information included on the American Indian Gateway.
American Indian Identification
“Individuals who identify as "American Indian” are either citizens/members of a tribe or they self-identify.
Tribal Citizenship definition: Tribes in the United States define their own membership or citizenship based on their own set of criteria. Tribes in turn are recognized by the federal government (or sometimes state government) with whom they maintain a government to government relationship. The U.S. government does not decide who or who is not a member or citizen of a tribe – tribes have the sovereign right to do this. When a person states that they are “enrolled” or are a “citizen” of a tribe, that means that they meet the criteria for membership in that the tribe. It means they are a legal member or citizen of that tribe.
Self-identification definition: There are some people who self-identify as being American Indian or Native American (without legal tribal recognition). There are complex reasons why a person self-identifies as a Native person. Sometimes the person may have tribal heritage but does not qualify for legal tribal membership or citizenship, as defined by the tribe. Or sometimes a non-Native person is adopted by a Native family and self-identifies as Native.
At the University of Montana there are individuals who are either a legal citizen/member of a tribe or they self-identify." -- Rosalyn LaPier (Blackfeet/Metis), Ph.D., Environmental Studies