The University of Nebraska–Lincoln Native American Coalition (NAC) builds relationships and partnerships between the Nebraska Extension and Native American communities and organizations. The work of NAC is to help Nebraska Extension staff work more effectively with Native American communities, to build bridges between tribal and non-tribal communities, to facilitate community development and leadership in Native communities and to bring Native American traditional worldviews, languages, cultures and histories to the University of Nebraska and non-tribal communities.
Land acknowledgement statement
"We would like to begin by acknowledging that the University of Nebraska is a land-grant institution with campuses and programs on the past, present, and future homelands of the Pawnee, Ponca, Oto-Missouria, Omaha, Dakota, Lakota, Arapaho, Cheyenne, and Kaw Peoples, as well as the relocated Ho-Chunk, Iowa, and Sac and Fox Peoples. Please take a moment to consider the legacies of more than 150 years of displacement, violence, settlement, and survival that bring us together here today. At the University of Nebraska, we respect and seek out inclusion of differences, realizing we can learn from each other, and we look forward to building long-lasting relationships with the Indigenous People of Nebraska."
Chuck Hibberd, Nebraska Extension Emeriti
574 Federally Recognized Tribes in the United States
5 Nebraska Land-based Tribes
Umonhon, Isanti, Ho-Chunk, Ponca, and Iowa Nations
51 Native Students in Fall 2021 at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln
16,100 Native Americans in Nebraska
35% residing on state’s 3 reservations 65% living in urban areas in Nebraska
Indigenous Educational Programs
The UNL Hoop of Learning Program
The UNL Hoop of Learning Program is an indigenous college and career program for indigenous high school students and their families to learn about the programs and services that the Nebraska Indian Community College (NICC), Southeast Community College (SCC), and the University of Nebraska–Lincoln (UNL) have to offer. The program will coordinate these programs and services to better inform indigenous students and their families about these higher education institutions.
Nebraska Indian Community College (NICC) and the UNL College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources have partnered to create an articulation agreement for a B.S. in Applied Science Program (Online). This online program provides tribal students the opportunity to take classes from the convenience of their homes or at NICC’s computer labs. Applied Science is one of the most flexible majors, allowing you to choose from several areas of emphasis.
This program uses the Indigenous medicine wheel as a model to focus on the four directions for healthy eating: nutrition education, food preparation and safety, cooking and recipes, and food preservation.
These events are hosted in the spring, summer, fall, and winter by the UNL Tribal Extension Office. Tribal communities in Nebraska are invited to attend these seasonal wellness circle events that focus on nutrition education, food preparation and safety, cooking and recipes, and food preservation.
This program will welcome Indigenous high school students onto UNL’s East Campus to engage with Indigenous elders and UNL Extension faculty to learn how to grow their own food and establish food sovereignty for their families and communities. They will meet on Saturday mornings throughout the year to learn how to prepare, maintain, harvest and preserve the food they will grow in the UNL Indigenous Garden.
Ashita Thewathe (Let's Go Outside) K-8 Garden Program
This tribal food sustainability program engages K – 8 students at the Umonhon Nation Public School in hands-on, outdoor group and individual experiences that provide a love of gardening, develops an appreciation for the environment and a connection to their language and traditional practices.
This program is a partnership between Nebraska Indian Community College, the Center for Rural Affairs, and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Tribal Extension Program. This tribal food sustainability program is designed to create local food producers for the Umonhon Nation. These food producers will grow food for their families, communities and commercial venues to create economic development.
This program focuses on hydroponics, a non-traditional method for growing food. Hydroponics involves growing plants without soil by using water-based mineral nutrient solutions. This program will provide year-round fresh food for the Umonhon tribe.
The first goal of the Medicine Wheel Talking Circle Training Model is to create good relationships and foster strong identity which leads to people becoming good relatives to one another. The second goal of this model is to create relationships between Nebraska communities and Nebraska Extension.
This model utilizes an Indigenous medicine wheel design that acknowledges the four directions and the circular motion of the medicine wheel that starts in the east and flows clockwise south, west and north. This model is designed to provide four two-hour training modules that will share knowledge on tribal worldviews/cultures, tribal policies/history, tribal community assessment and tribal economic opportunities.
This event will focus on health and wellness issues that impact infants, children, adults, and elders in the indigenous communities. Additionally, it will help to create reciprocal relationships between indigenous and non-indigenous health programs and providers to discuss ideas and share information that will map a path forward to healthy lifestyles for indigenous people in Nebraska.