The Native American and Indigenous Cultural Center acknowledges that the Cal Poly campus is situated on unceded land, included in unratified Treaty “C” region, signed at Camp Burton on June 3, 1851. We recognize yak titʸu titʸu yak tiłhini [Northern Chumash Tribe of San Luis Obispo County and Region], their continuing connection to land, water and community, and yak titʸu titʸu yak tiłhini elder's past, present, and emerging.
The Native American and Indigenous Cultural Center seeks to embrace and encourage students to (re)connect to the traditions and cultures of Native American and Indigenous peoples. The center aims to ensure student success by holistically supporting them and providing services rooted in de-colonial practices, community engagement, restorative healing, and native knowledge. The NAICC’s vision is to create and sustain an environment in which Native and Indigenous students thrive and contribute to the university efforts to recruit, retain, and graduate Native and Indigenous students.
As an intertribal space, the NAICC will foster partnerships with the American Indian Student Association, the American Indian Science & Engineering Society, American Indian and Indigenous Faculty and Staff Association, University Housing, Academic Affairs, and the yak titʸu titʸu yak tiłhini Northern Chumash Tribe, and other local and statewide tribes.
We are thrilled to invite our newest member to the Student Diversity and Belonging team, Erika Landa Sarmiento. Erika identifies as an Indigenous Chicana from Nahua ancestry located in Puebla, Mexico. She earned her B.A. in Chicana/o Studies from California State University, Channel Islands (Chumash land) and attended the University of San Francisco (Ramaytush Ohlone land) where she is currently finishing her M.A. in Migration Studies. Her passion is rooted in empowering and holistically supporting Latinx and Indigenous students.
We anticipate that the NAICC will be open when students return for the Fall 2021 quarter. Throughout the 2021 spring and summer quarters, the Student Diversity & Belonging team will prepare for and furnish the center location in yakʔitʸutʸu. Our professional staff team will continue to work with student leaders from American Indian Students Association (AISA) and American Indian Science & Engineering Society (AISES), in addition to faculty and our local Native and Indigenous community as we progress towards opening.
We will have an official blessing, opening and celebration on Indigenous Peoples' Day, Monday, October 11, 2021.