Paper No. 5
Presentation Time: 2:30 PM
THE RESEARCH EXPERIENCE FOR UNDERGRADUATES ON SUSTAINABLE LAND AND WATER RESOURCES--AN ON-RESERVATION RESEARCH OPPORTUNITY FOR STUDENTS FROM ALL BACKGROUNDS
The Research Experience for Undergraduates on Sustainable Land and Water Resources supports 14 undergraduates per year to do research on and with two different Native American reservations, the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa in Northern Minnesota and at the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Nation Reservation in Montana. Students from many different backgrounds, including students local to these communities, form teams that work on various issues related to sustainable management of resources on these reservations. Many of the participants are non-traditional students, pursuing degrees as adults and many are parents of dependent children. Students are placed on teams to work together on a single research project in order to provide a more supportive learning environment. Mentors also work as a team that includes faculty, graduate students, elders, and other advisors. Some of the issues arising in this program include supporting students from a diversity of life experiences and academic abilities, overcoming distance to field sites and between mentors and participants, and working to keep our research focused on community needs. The program is focused on increasing participation by underrepresented groups, and particularly by Native Americans, in the geosciences. This session will focus on the unique systems that are in place for this REU to overcome barriers and create an inclusive and supportive environment for participants.