Walla Walla University concluded Native American Heritage Month with its first-ever Native American-themed CommUnity program with the aim of recognizing and celebrating Native American students, faculty, and staff, and their cultures.
This historic event took place on November 29, 2022, and included a special scripture reading, a WWU graduate’s original Native American poem, and a trivia game on Native American tribes and historical figures.
Kole Greyeyes, freshman psychology major who participated in the program, said the program felt like a unique celebration of his heritage. “The most important aspect of the university celebrating students’ cultures is, in my opinion, that it gives students perspective about where other people come from,” he said.
The special CommUnity was organized in part by Ivy Lu, senior business major and ASWWU diversity and wellness officer. She noted the importance of sharing Native American perspectives specifically during CommUnity because it is one of the few programs where the entire student body comes together. While the Native American population is relatively small on campus, she says these kinds of events are great learning opportunities for all students and hopefully helps everyone feel welcomed and understood.
The program speaker was Seth Cantu, a 2021 theology graduate and founding president of the First Nations club on campus. He spoke about the importance of passing down the legacy of Native Americans and continuing to support on-campus programs and clubs that celebrate diversity.
In line with that sentiment, Lu said she hopes this event will become an annual one. “I feel our university is doing a great job recognizing the various nationalities and giving better support to the student leaders of the various heritage clubs each year,” she said.
Learn more about how we celebrate diversity on campus at wallawalla.edu/diversity.
Posted Jan. 10, 2023.