The University of Utah, American Indian Resource Center (AIRC), in partnership with the Urban Indian Center of Salt Lake and Salt Lake Community College, is organizing the 2024 University of Utah Powwow, “Weaving Communities and Making Connections.” The primary goal of this event, scheduled for April 13, 2024, is to provide support and boost the morale of the Native community in the region by celebrating indigeneity through song and dance. The powwow reflects the three major organizations’ mission, vision, and values in serving Native peoples throughout the Salt Lake Valley.
“We’re coming together to expand our efforts in elevating the Native community through a cultural celebration. Our united front brings resources together to make this event larger and more inclusive.” Tashina Barber, AIRC program manager and chair of the pow wow committee. This year, the powwow will take place at the Jon M. Huntsman Center, which is a significant victory for students and community members, who have expressed their desire to hold this important event in a larger space that can accommodate more people to gather and participate.
The AIRC is committed to aiding Native nations and tribal communities. Our focus is on projects that promote community, learning, sovereignty, and support for Native peoples, aligning with the mission of the university. We also take the initiative in discovering new ideas and solutions to further the progress of Native peoples connected to the university.
To advance the Native community, the AIRC established its advisory board with members representing various tribal entities and Native-serving organizations. The board’s main purpose is to oversee the institution’s work related to American Indian (AI) and Alaska Native (AN) initiatives, address issues of concern and develop strategies.
“In strategizing new ways to advance the Native community, AIRC established the AIRC Advisory Board with members representing various tribal entities and Native serving organizations. The main purpose of the board is to follow the overall work of the institution as it pertains to American Indian and Alaska Native initiatives, address issues of concern, and develop strategies,” said Tashina Barber.” It is important to promote voices at the local level and to provide a space for interests to be addressed.”
The Urban Indian Center of Salt Lake is commemorating its 50th anniversary, by partnering with the AIRC and SLCC through its shared objective of promoting equity within the urban AI/AN community. UICSL is committed to “serving the people by respecting Native cultures, promoting health and wellness programs, and fostering community.” The center offers its services to tribal members in the Greater Salt Lake and Wasatch Front area, catering to individuals from federally recognized tribes, including the eight tribes of Utah.
“We have been hoping to partner with AIRC and SLCC for a long time, and with our anniversary approaching, it seemed appropriate to give back to the community in this way,” said UICSL executive director Alan Barlow. “We are thrilled at this opportunity and to become a valuable resource for the community.”
Salt Lake Community College’s American Indian Student Leadership (AISL) organization shares and cultivates appreciation of all Native American and Alaskan Natives. It also provides support for a successful academic and educational experience by affording social and cultural activities through leadership and community service.