The organization, led by President Diana Hernandez, aims to bring together students and indigenous peoples, concepts and events.
Native American culture has become an increasingly discussed topic in recent years as part of a cultural shift aimed at being more inclusive in society.
Although the organization was set up when VSU began the Minor in Native American and Native Studies, any student interested in Native American and Native issues can participate in the organization.
Four Directions is not strictly a Native American or Indigenous community.
“It is made up of students who are interested in issues involving culture, spirituality, environment, sovereignty, languages and a variety of other issues,” said Dr. Lavonna Lovern, professor of Native American studies. and natives. “NAIS is an organization designed to research and understand all aspects of the concerns of Native Americans and Indigenous people around the world. “
Topics covered by Four Directions included languages and dying languages, political and legal issues, stereotypes, mascots, movies and the media.
Although Four Directions is not a national organization, universities around the world have their own Native American and Native organizations, each with their own mission goals in mind, according to Dr. Lovern.
Like most other organizations on campus, Four Directions has taken a hit due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This was mainly due to the fact that the organization was not able to meet regularly.
“The group had been quite active from its inception until COVID,” said Dr Lovern. “However, we have a strong group that started this fall. They have already had meetings and are planning several events.
As this is what Dr Lovern has called a “year of rebuilding,” Four Directions currently meets twice a month with a focus on discussions on Indigenous topics, with the help of their sponsors. In addition, the board has met on teams at different times to help with planning and organization.
There are no events announced at this time, but these will be announced when the organization has completed all the details.
“They recently worked on the issue of missing and murdered indigenous women during their discussion meeting,” said Dr Lovern. “They have created ribbons for educational use and are planning to hold a campus event in honor of these women. It is a cooperation with the international movement of missing and murdered indigenous women.
Austin Bruce Story, Editor-in-Chief. Photo courtesy of Four Directions.