Largest January in Tucson On Record

Jan. 30, 2020
Largest January in Tucson On Record

The Indigenous Governance Program (IGP) welcomed 118 participants from around the world to January in Tucson 2020 (JIT), capping off the largest JIT on record. JIT is a three-week, intensive Indigenous governance education session offered through the University of Arizona’s Indigenous Governance Program (IGP) a joint program of the Native Nations Institute (NNI) and Indigenous Peoples Law & Policy Program (IPLP) at the James E. Rogers College of Law.

Now in its eighth year, JIT offered 18 courses from its catalogue, including three new courses taught by NNI staff members. IGP also hosted weekly noon lectures that covered a range of topics including missing and murdered Indigenous women, the work of the Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development, in addition to a Distinguished Tribal Leader Lecture featuring Gov. Stephen Lewis of the Gila River Indian Community.

Following his participation in JIT, Dr. Cornel Pewewardy (Comanche & Kiowa), an eminent scholar in Indigenous education, made the following observations:

“I really enjoyed a unique spiritual and academic experience attending January in Tucson 2020! My main take-away was being taught by renown faculty…[and] a remarkable amount of diverse student learners to discuss the strategies to strengthen Indigenous governance being implemented globally. It was indeed an opportunity to “walk among the legends in Indigenous governance.”

From its diverse student base to its world-class faculty, JIT provides an educational experience that is unique and in demand as Native nations seek to strengthen Indigenous governance. As an example, this year, the Pascua Yaqui Tribe hosted a first-ever JIT satellite course on the Pascua Yaqui Reservation. Led by NNI Executive Director Joan Timeche (Hopi), and Tribal Outreach Specialist Danielle Hiraldo (Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina), the satellite course was requested by the Pascua Yaqui Tribe in its efforts to strengthen Indigenous governance education among its employees.

Record-Setting Tribal Professionals Cohort

This year, eleven individuals were selected to be a part of NNI’s prestigious Tribal Professionals Cohort, a select group open to tribal professionals at any level, who work with federally recognized Native Nations and Indigenous peoples. Each recipient received free registration for three courses, a travel stipend, and an opportunity to learn from world-renowned leaders in Indigenous governance and native nation building.

Innovations such as these make JIT one of the premier Indigenous governance educational opportunities in the world.

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