Support UCSB Native & Indigenous Students' Education Equality

Support UCSB Native & Indigenous Students' Education Equality

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UCSB Native & Indigenous Students started this petition to Associate Vice Chancellor for Undergraduate Education Jeffery Stopple and

Please sign our petition in support of the school investing in our Native and Indigenous students! Please read an excerpt of our letter below. The entire letter can be found here.

[An excerpt from our letter as Native and Indigenous students at UCSB]

To our campus community,

We are your American Indian and Indigenous peers. American Indian and Indigenous students have been repeatedly pushed to the sidelines. We are tired of our voices being treated as an inconvenience. We are tired of the lack of representation in university-level academia. We are tired of the lack of initiative taken by university administrators and faculty to aid us in our goal of establishing an American Indian and Indigenous Studies Department. We are tired of being told that our voices, our pain, our struggles, are not enough to warrant real change. We are tired. The grotesque history of settler colonialism is one that has transcended into systemic and institutional insufficiency, which is all too relevant here at UC Santa Barbara.

[...] Native students are suffering at UC Santa Barbara. At a population totaling around 1% of UCSB’s undergraduate community, and less than 1% on the graduate level, Native students are especially vulnerable. Furthermore, drop-out rates for Indigenous students are the highest of any other ethnic group, with up to 50% of all Native students who enroll in college never receiving a degree. Compounded by a lack of belonging, rampant micro-aggressions, and Indigenous invisibility, it is more important than ever to work towards the wellbeing of Native students. While UC Santa Barbara has spaces dedicated to inclusion and social justice, most of these spaces are not Indigenous-focused and fail to take into account the specific needs of our population. Therefore, they fail to serve our students as they do other populations. Indigenous student wellbeing requires an understanding of our cultural complexities that must come from centering Indigenous voices. As of now, the university has failed to do this. 

[...] In sum, we are absolutely appalled and exhausted by the continued acts of Indigenous suppression and erasure by this university. UC Santa Barbara has done the bare minimum by adopting a land acknowledgment, which is only read sporadically at events such as convocation. Indigenous students are more than just a land acknowledgment It is time for UCSB to move beyond pretense of support and actually act on the needs of the Indigenous community. We will not back down or step to the side. We are Strong, we are Resilient, and above all, we are Indigenous.

Our Demands as the Native and Indigenous students of UC Santa Barbara are as follows:

-Complete adherence and support for the American Indian and Indigenous Studies proposal as authored and intended. See here.
-The formation of a fully funded American Indian and Indigenous Studies Department.
-The formation of a fully funded American Indian and Indigenous research center.
-The hiring of additional American Indian and Indigenous faculty, career staff, and student staff.
Continued funding for American Indian and Indigenous initiatives.
Such as the American Indian and Indigenous Symposium.
-The hiring of American Indian and Indigenous-focused admissions officer.

0 have signed. Let’s get to 5,000!
At 5,000 signatures, this petition is more likely to get picked up by local news!