Building a bridge.
The American Indian Hall will be a campus home for our native students, a place to
share meals, meet with each other and with students from other backgrounds. A gathering
room will create space where people come together to share the collective wisdom of
their history, a place to speak openly and honestly, a place to practice native ceremony
and culture. Additional rooms will house tutoring, counseling and mentoring, a kitchen,
a drum room, space for Elders to provide counsel, and of course, rooms for students
to visit, study or work on projects.
The American Indian Hall will also serve as a bridge between American Indian and other
cultures, welcoming our native and non-native visitors alike, raising the profile
of our American Indian population on campus, and bringing into sharper focus their
community. The new American Indian Hall will provide a dedicated space for interchange
that will focus on education and will celebrate the unique diversity we share.
With President Cruzado’s leadership, several committees comprised of representatives
from across campus have been assembled to guide the process of programming and designing
MSU’s new American Indian Hall.
Your thoughts are welcome as we embark on this task.
Building upon original concepts developed by Dennis Sun Rhodes of the Northern Arapahoe
and MSU Alumnus from the School of Architecture, the design of the building and accompanying
grounds will be guided by a number of important constituents: President Cruzado’s
Council of Elders; the Native American Studies department at MSU; the American Indian
Council (a student organization); our partners at the seven Tribal Colleges in Montana;
the Associated Students of MSU; tribal elders from around the region; and interested
The people of Montana want to write a new chapter based on trust and understanding
among groups with diverse interests and world views. To change the conversation, we
all must be a part of it. The American Indian Hall at MSU will help advance that conversation
and allow our native sons and daughters to spread their knowledge within and beyond
the reservation borders, into the world we now live. Our hope is that we can create
a better future for everyone from this place, this educational home for our future
American Indian leaders and all MSU students.