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Current Students

Colleena Bibeau, ’13

Colleena Bibeau
  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: White Earth Anishinaabe
  • Major(s): American Indian Studies and History
  • Senior Seminar Paper: Undecided
  • Future Career Goal: To obtain a Ph.D. in History with an emphasis in Native American History (including Latin American and First Nations history.

Monty Blackberg, ’13

Monty Blackberg
  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: Scandinavian
  • Major(s): American Indian Studies and Multicultural Studies
  • Senior Seminar Paper: Historical Trauma and American Indian Strategies of Survival
  • Honors and Awards: UMM Honor Roll and staff with the American Indian Digital History Project
  • Future Career Goal: Pursue job opportunities within the field of mental health.

Juliane Chase, ’15

Juliane Chase
  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe, Norwegian, and French
  • Major(s): American Indian Studies and Anthropology
  • Honors and Awards: UMM Honors Student, Post-Secondary Grant from Leech Lake Reservation
  • Future Career Goal: Attend graduate school and secure employment with a museum.

Seth Elsen, ’13

Seth Elsen
  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: Brothertown Indian Nation/Mohegan Tribe of Connecticut
  • Major(s): Political Science and Resource Management
  • Minor(s): American Indian Studies
  • Senior Seminar Topic: The Grand Coulee Dam and Its’ Impacts on the Colville and Spokane Tribes
  • Future Career Goal: Pursue a career in Tribal resource management and to attend graduate school in Tribal governance and natural resource management.

Colter Combellick, ’13

  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe
  • Major(s): American Indian Studies and Sociology
  • Senior Seminar Topic: Discrimination in Division I and II College Athletics: Contemporary Native American Athletes
  • Honors and Awards: Academic All-UMAC, Fall 2011 (Football)
  • Future career goal: After graduation, I want to become a Social Worker specializing in Family Violence. I plan on attending graduate school at the University of Minnesota—Twin Cities or Minnesota State University, Mankato.

Isaac Deragon, ’13

  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: Bad River Band of Ojibwe
  • Major(s): American Indian Studies and Multicultural Studies
  • Minor(s): Political Science and English
  • Senior Seminar Topic: Undecided
  • Honors and Awards: UMM Tuition Waiver and Legacy Scholarship
  • Future Career Goals: Prefer to work on community building at Bad River or among other Native Nations.

Eric L. DuMarce, ’14

  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate
  • Major(s): American Indian Studies
  • Minor(s): History
  • Honors and Awards: U Promise Scholarship from UMM; Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community Endowed Scholarship; Federal PELL Grant; and Federal SEOG; and UMM Tuition Waiver. Thanks his community and all those who have invested in his education.
  • Future career goal: Will attend graduate school for a MA in education. Plans to teach in a Dakota community and is interesting in teaching Dakota language, culture, and history but is most interested in American Indian history as a whole. I want to become an educator within our communities as well as to represent our unique Indigenous perspective in the classroom.

Kimberley Gruhn ’16

Kimberley Gruhn
  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma ᏣᎳᎩᎯ ᎠᏰᎵ
  • Majors: American Indian Studies and Studio Art
  • Future Career Goals: After graduating, I plan to continue my education by pursuing graduate degrees in Studio Art and American Indian Studies. My art is inspired by my Cherokee roots, and my long term goal is to teach in both American Indian Studies and Studio Art at the collegiate level.

Marlena Hanson, ’16

  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: White Earth Nation
  • Major: American Indian Studies, Criminal Justice, and Liberal Arts for the Human Services
  • Honors/Awards: Gateway and elected first year representative for CNIA
  • Future career goal: I plan to become a probation officer on the White Earth Reservation to become politically active to remove the popular use of stereotypes that target all American Indian Nations and peoples.

Lera Hephner, ’15

Lera Hephner
  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: Descendant of the Red Rock Band (Ontario, Canada)
  • Major(s): American Indian Studies and Anthropology
  • Minor(s): History
  • Scholarships/Awards: Deans List 2011
  • Future career goals: Obtain a PhD in Anthropology specializing in Museum Studies. Ultimately, I would like to teach or work in a museum.

Alayna Johnson, ’15

Alayna Johnson
  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa
  • Major(s): Environmental Studies
  • Minor(s): American Indian Studies and Biology
  • Honors and Awards: Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community Scholar, Ethel M. Curry American Indian Scholarship, and UMM American Indian Tuition Waiver.

Natasha Myhal, ’15

Natasha Myhal
  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians
  • Majors: American Indian Studies and Environmental Studies
  • Awards/Honors: American Indian Services 2011/2012; American Indian Legacy Scholarship 2012; Higher Education—Self Sufficiency Incentive Award Program from the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians, 2011/2012;
  • Future Goals: After graduation from UMM, I plan on attending graduate school for Natural Resource Conservation Management, or Environmental Studies with a focus on Cultural Preservation. After graduate school, I plan on either working for my Tribe or a USDA NRCS (Natural Resources Conservation Service).

Kristin Ross, ’13

Kristin Ross
  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: Pejahutazizi Oyate—Dakota
  • Major(s): American Indian Studies
  • Minor(s): History
  • Senior Seminar Paper: Cultural Heritage Management and Honors and Awards: AIMFP Fellowship Awarded in 2011
  • Future Career Goal: After completing my degree at UMM, I intend to obtain an additional BS degree in Applied Anthropology at Mankato. I hope to earn a MA or MS in Applied Anthropology or Museum Studies and Business Management. I also plan to gain practical experience by continuing my volunteer work with the Minnesota Historical Society, doing tribal monitoring for my community, working as an Archaeological Field Technician, and pursuing additional internships related to the fields of Tribal Heritage Preservation, Federal-Indian policy and relationships, and opportunities involving management or as a curator of ethnographic collections in a museum setting, including repatriation projects.

Jubal Schmidt, ’14

Jubal Schmidt
  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: White Earth Band of Chippewa
  • Major(s): American Indian Studies, Anthropology, and Pre-Law
  • Minor(s): History
  • Future Goals: Attend law school and specialize in Federal Indian Law

Sasha Suarez, ’13

Sasha Suarez
  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: White Earth Anishinaabe, Nett Lake Anishinaabe
  • Major(s): American Indian Studies and Multicultural Studies
  • Minor(s): History
  • Senior Seminar Paper: Women in Anishinaabeg Communities
  • Honors and Awards: Dean’s List, American Indian Salt Springs Treaty Cultural Scholarship Award, and John Q. Imholte Scholarship
  • Future Career Goal: After graduation, I plan to attend graduate school to attain my M.A. and Ph.D. in either History or American Studies.

Kelli Thiel, ’15

Kelli Thiel
  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: Irish and German
  • Major(s): American Indian Studies
  • Minor(s): Communication, Media and Rhetoric
  • Honors and Awards: Romilly Jean Cassida Memorial School Scholarship
  • Future Career Goals: After graduation I plan to attend law school and specialize in Federal Indian Law.

Ashleigh Thompson, ’13

Ashleigh Thompson
  • Tribal Affiliation/Indigenous Descent: Red Lake Anishinaabe
  • Major(s): American Indian Studies, Multicultural Studies, and Anthropology
  • Minor(s): English
  • Honors and Awards: Dean’s Scholarship, American Indian Salt Springs Award, Williams Stewart Scholarship, Society for American Archaeology Arthur C. Parker Scholarship, American Indian Society and Engineering Society Scholarship (AISES) Travel Scholarship for 2010 National Conference
  • Future career goal: Attend graduate school for a Master’s degree in Anthropology

Laura Yourd, ’15

Laura Yourd
  • Major(s): American Indian Studies and Environmental Studies
  • Minor(s): Political Science
  • Future Career Goal: After graduation I plan on either going on to graduate school or securing a job in my field.