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A Letter From the Interim Director 

Leanne Howe

Halito chi kana, my name is LeAnne Howe, enrolled citizen of the Choctaw Nation, and Director of the Institute of Native American Studies.  Our organization continues to grow through the increased number of students completing undergraduate and graduate INAS Certificates, a record number of new certificate enrollees, expanding faculty engagement, and a broad range of events and student activities last semester. In fact, our achievements in the fall of 2022 have cleared a new path for INAS.


INAS worked with the Native American Student Association (NASA) to host the first ever PowWow on UGA grounds in November, 2022, a major achievement!  The event was attended by over 100 people, including faculty from across Franklin College, and tribal families from Oklahoma, Kansas, South Dakota, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Georgia. In the process of organizing this event through our vibrant NASA student group, we established a working relationship with a group of Native American dancers and musicians and Wichita Tribal Elder, Stanley Holder. The PowWow will be held annually during Native American Heritage Month from now on. We are so grateful to our supporting organizations including UGA Student Services, and Dean Jamie Kreiner. 


INAS also hosted three renowned scholars in American Indian Studies, Dr. Chadwick Allen, (UW), Dr. Phillip Morgan, Choctaw/Chickasaw author and scholar, and Rebecca Nagle, Cherokee Nation activist, journalist, and award-winning podcaster.  INAS will continue to bring top scholars to UGA to broaden conversation of Native American history, literature, arts & cultures in the Southeast.


One of our continuing goals at INAS is to keep our UGA community of scholars, students, and the public informed of our multidisciplinary programming that has been so integral to the growth of INAS.  We collaborate with other university programs, including Women’s Studies, Latin American & Caribbaen Studies, Classics, History, Anthropology, and the undergraduate pre-law program to advance knowledge of Native American Studies in different academic disciplines.


 We have an amazing team at INAS; Assistant Director, Dr. James Owen ( teaches Native American history and Native American Studies courses and serves as program coordinator and advisor for the INAS certificate students.  Mary Jo Eden, INAS internet assistant, regularly updates our website with news.  We also have a growing number of faculty affiliates who teach courses for certificate credit relevant to Native American and Indigenous studies. Contact us at if you have news or events you would like us to share with our community network. 


This spring we are so fortunate to announce that Chris Goeckel has again provided Ruth Pack Scholarships for Native students attending UGA, or for Native students applying for fall 2023 and accepted.  This spring we're offering $25,000 in scholarships for Native students.  For those interested in applying for the Ruth Pack Scholarship contact us at for application materials.

We hope to hear from you!  



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