Observing Indigenous Peoples Day 2023


Dear Howard University Community,

Happy Indigenous Peoples Day to all who celebrate!

Today we are provided an important opportunity to honor the rich cultures, histories, and contributions of Indigenous peoples, while also reflecting upon the diverse values that define Howard University. As we commemorate this important day, we all should take a moment to acknowledge and appreciate the significance of Indigenous peoples, their experiences, and their enduring legacies in shaping the world we inhabit today.

At Howard, we have long aspired to be a beacon of hope and progress for Americans of all colors and creeds, providing a platform for education, empowerment, and activism. While our primary mission has been rooted in the African American experience, it is essential that we recognize and celebrate the intersections of our community with other marginalized groups such as Indigenous peoples. We are all part of a larger tapestry of history, struggle, and resilience. It is within the spirit of solidarity and understanding that we mark this moment.

Indigenous Peoples Day bestows upon us opportunities to learn, reflect, and engage with the profound contributions of Indigenous communities throughout history. From the knowledge of sustainable agricultural practices, the wisdom of land stewardship, to the arts, music, and storytelling traditions, Indigenous cultures have left an indelible mark on our society. It is through acknowledging their contributions that we continue to build bridges and foster dialogue between communities.

As we recognize this moment, I encourage all members of our University community to engage and reflect in meaningful conversations today.

Consider the land we stand on as the ancestral territories of Indigenous peoples. Be cognizant of the importance in acknowledging the history of displacement and injustice they have endured. Let us remember the resilience of Indigenous communities and their continued fight for sovereignty, cultural preservation, and environmental justice.

Committed to Truth and Service,


Ben Vinson III, Ph.D.


Social Justice and Statements