Native American Heritage Celebration

Native American Heritage Celebration is the celebration of the history, culture, traditions and contributions of Native Americans. The celebration is recognized nationally every November, but is a celebration that lasts throughout the year. Below is our 2023-2024 academic calendar of events! 

Warrior Lawyers: Viewing and Discussion-Canceled event

A poster depicting multiple photos of Native American organizing.

September 26th at 5PM - Canceled


Join the office of Multicultural Affairs in the presentation of Warrior Lawyers, a PBS documentary.  'Warrior Lawyers: Defenders of Sacred Justice' is a one-hour PBS documentary that is particularly timely and relevant given our country's current reckoning with racial inequity and systemic racism. The program focuses on the stories of Michigan Native American Lawyers, Tribal Judges and their colleagues who work with Native Nations, their citizens and mainstream institutions to achieve healing and Sacred Justice. Come take a journey into past and present day Indian Country to learn of untold stories that shine a light on Native Americans rising up to create a new path for today and for the next Seven Generations.

Following the viewing we will be facilitating discussion and answering questions on why this is relevant to GVSU's approach to conflict resolution.  Discussion will be facilitated by Renee Malkowski, Office of Student Conduct and Conflict Resolution, and Lin Bardwell, Office of Multicultural Affairs

Idema Pew Library, Multipurpose Room, first level

10582 S Campus Dr, Allendale Charter Twp, MI 49401


Overcoming and Becoming with Hon. Allie Maldonado

October 5th at 11:00 AM

Please join us as we welcome Hon. Allie Maldonado, citizen of the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians to Grand Valley State University.  Hon. Maldonado, as seen in the documentary, Warrior Lawyers, will be sharing with us, her journey to becoming an attorney, overcoming the intergeneration trauma of the Boarding School era, to become the State of Michigan's first Anishinaabekwe (Native American woman) to be appointed as judge to the Michigan Court of Appeals.  She will share her experiences serving her community for many years, and how her work makes a significant impact on our citizens as well as the importance of having diversity sitting on the bench.  This event will take place on our downtown campus, Richard M. Devos Center's Loosemoore Auditorium.  

Loosemore Auditorium

401 West Fulton Street

Grand Rapids, MI 59504


Living and Learning in Relationship

October 12th at 2PM

Our ancestors, in their hundreds of treaties, have always demanded access to education for our children.  For a long period of time, this education took the form of Boarding Schools; government ran systems of oppression, trauma, and violence that has had a long hard impact to our community and will continue to have an impact as we begin the healing journey.  Part of the healing journey, is sharing and learning history from the perspectives of Turtle Island's first stewards.  Melissa Isaac, MSA, citizen of the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe has forged her path advocating and fighting for our youth to be able to thrive within the colonial education structures.  She is now a State of Michigan employee as the Gizhwaasod: Protector of the Young for the Department of Education.  Prior to that, she advocated as President of the Confederated Michigan Tribal Education Departments (CMTED) while she served her community as the tribal education director.  


National Best-Selling Author: Robin Wall Kimmerer

November 8th at 11:30AM-1PM

Grand River Room, Kirkhof Center



Sponsored by:

Office of Multicultural Affairs, Native American Student Association, Division of Enrollment Development and Educational Outreach, Brooks College of Interdisciplinary Studies, and the Division of Inclusion and Equity

Previous Celebrations

Native American Heritage Celebration Contact

Office of Multicultural Affairs

Lin Bardwell
Grand Valley State University
Email: [email protected]
Phone: (616) 331-2177

Page last modified September 26, 2023