We are on Monacan Land

The University of Virginia occupies and derives benefit from the ancestral territory of the Monacan Indian Nation. We at NIRC honor the Monacan people and their contributions, past, present, and future. We are particularly grateful to the Monacan citizens who are working with us today to forge meaningful, respectful, and mutually beneficial relationships between UVA and the Monacan people. Change at UVA must begin with repair of that foundational relationship. 

Who We Are

The Native and Indigenous Relations Community (NIRC) consists of faculty, staff, students, and community members engaged in activities to honor the perspectives and promote the well-being of Native and Indigenous peoples. We do so by advocating for Native and Indigenous studies, community, learning, and knowledge at the University of Virginia and beyond.

We are a committee working in partnership with the Division for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, and across UVA’s academic departments and units, including UVA’s Native American Student Union (NASU). We also work outwards from UVA, to build respectful and mutually beneficial relationships between UVA and Tribal Nations locally and globally. Our mission statement and shared goals are authored by Indigenous members of NIRC.

Mission statement

We highlight and amplify Native and Indigenous voices for the advancement of these communities within the university and respectfully co-create and collaborate with Tribal communities beyond the university. Native and Indigenous living, knowledge, and learning is the foundational principle upon which we move forward.

Shared goals

  • Building and enhancing a university culture of respectful, collaborative, and Indigenous- centered knowledge production and research.

  • Ensure that institutional structures and mandates support ethical research in collaboration with Tribal Nations and Indigenous peoples.

  • Decolonization of institutional landscapes, spaces, and infrastructure by providing contextualization or redesign.

  • Greater representation and support of Native and Indigenous faculty, staff, and students at UVA and in university leadership roles (e.g., Board of Visitors).

  • Support and share resources with Native and Indigenous students, past, present, and future.

  • Dedicated curricula to highlight Native and Indigenous studies, perspectives, and history.

  • Ensure the university’s development of a Tribal consultation policy and fund a dedicated Tribal Liaison position with resources for outreach in collaboration with Virginia Tribes.

  • Building bridges and allies across silo-ed departments and schools to support a Tribal Liaison and university engagement with Tribal Nations and Indigenous peoples.

  • Create a Center with a department, dedicated staff, and foundation, developing initiatives such as in-residence programs for Indigenous-knowledge holders, permanent seminar series, and Tribal outreach.

  • Funding sources to support all these goals becoming a part of the university’s strategic plan.

Prospective members are invited to contact us at nativeandindigenousrc@virginia.edu to request access to the group listserv. In your message, please explain in 2-3 sentences why you'd like to join this community and what you hope to learn and do as a member.