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Indigenous Women & Women of Color Student Summit

Indigenous Women & Women of Color Student Summit

The Indigenous Women and Women of Color Student Summit, organized by the Women's Center, takes place every other year. We are proud to partner with the Carlson School of Management in organizing the next summit, which will take place at the University of Minnesota on Saturday, March 24, 2018. The theme for the 2018 summit is This World is Ours to Build. Check back later in fall 2017 for more details.

This summit is by and for indigenous women and women of color students to learn from each other, network, and explore leadership, personal, and professional development. The summit prioritizes and centers the voices and experiences of women-identified indigenous students and students of color. 

Summit History and Background

The inaugural summit, Safe Spaces, Critical Connections, was held in 2011 and centered around the themes of community-building, activism, leadership, and dialogue. The second summit, Loving Each Other Harder: Women of Color, Community and the Intersections of Our Identities*, was a continuation of the conversations that began in 2011. This conference took place in March 2014, and was an opportunity for attendees to examine these ideas in the context of intersectionality. A mini-conference, Being My Sister's Keeper: Supporting Each Other Through Action, was held in March 2015. 

The third summit, held in March 2016, continued and expanded upon past conference themes, and provided an opportunity for attendees to examine these ideas in the context of leadership, confidence, and cultural strengthWhat are the multiple identities of women of color? How do they affect the learning, leading and living experiences of women of color students, particularly at predominantly white institutions (PWIs)? How do these identities affect how women of color see and work with one another?

In 2016, we re-named this bi-annual event (formerly titled Women of Color Student Conference) as the Indigenous Women and Women of Color Student Summit. Dr. Debbie Reese, at the American Indians in Children's Literature website, provides a resource that may be helpful in understanding why we chose to rename this bi-annual event.

*We are inspired by and graciously credit Maegan Ortiz (mamitamala) for the creation of the language of “loving each other harder” and Jessica Marie Johnson, author of Diaspora Hypertext, for her writing featuring the same language.

Pictured: Plenary session with the People's Movement Center on healing justice at the March 2016 Indigenous Women and Women of Color Student Summit: Igniting Leadership, Confidence, and Cultural Strength

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