You are here: American University Campus Life Community Engagement & Service Navajo Nation Spring Alt Break 2021

Aleut, Navajo, and Winnemem Wintu, Samuel Hiratsuka has always carried his culture with him proudly. Born and raised in Anchorage, Alaska, Samuel is currently a 3rd Year Policy, Politics, and Law Scholar majoring in Communications, Legal Institutions, Economics, and Government (CLEG) with a focus on Federal Indian Law and Native Affairs. The First Alaskans Institute’s Al Adams Young Political Leader Fellow, Samuel also works in the D.C. office of Alaskan Senator Dan Sullivan. Samuel also serves as the Founder and President of the Student Advocates for Native Communities (SANC) at AU, the President of the Roosevelt Policy Network at American University, as well as a board member on AU’s American Studies Society. 

Alt Break Leader Samuel Headshot

Emily Bass is a sophomore here at American University. She grew up in Washington State and Ontario and as a result, is an avid nature lover who takes whatever chance she gets to get out and go explore the wilderness whether that be by foot, canoe, or car. She is currently double majoring in political science and film and media arts, a pairing that her friends affectionately call the “propaganda” degree, though she likes to think of it more as the “how to get things done and make it so people understand what you’re doing” degree. To that extent, she is also a photographer and film nerd who carries a minimum of one camera wherever she goes. But when all is said and all is done, she is just someone who loves to learn and is constantly striving to understand the world around her.

Alt Break Leader Emily Headshot

 

Legal Institutions - First Weekend

Saturday March 20, 2021 2PM - 6PM Eastern Time

Session One: 

Government: Meeting with Quinton Carroll, Legislative Coordinator, Indian Affairs, Office of the Assistant Secretary. Quick debrief on the conversation and expectations going into the second guest speaker. 

Session Two: 

NGO: Meeting with Nikki Pitre, Executive Director of the Center for Native American Youth (CNAY) Quick debrief on the conversation and expectations going into the third guest speaker. 

Session Three:

Big Picture: Meeting with Valerie Davidson, President of Alaska Pacific University Quick debrief on the conversation and expectations for the second day. 

Each speaker will be followed by a debrief and reflection period, with a longer reflection at the end of each day.

Break for the day. 

Sunday March 21, 2021 2PM - 6PM Eastern Time

Session One: 

Government: Meeting with Kate Wolgemuth, Rural Advisor for Sen. Sullivan Quick debrief on the conversation and expectations going into the second guest speaker. 

Session Two:

NGO: Meeting with Jackson Brossy, Executive Director of the NCN Native CDFI Network. Quick debrief on the conversation and expectations going into the third guest speaker. 

Session Three:

Big Picture: Meeting with Barbara Blake, Director of the Alaska Native Policy Center Quick debrief and conversation about expectations for next weekend.  

Break for the weekend. 

Indigenous Environmentalism - Second Weekend 

Water Rights 

Saturday March 26, 2021 2PM - 6PM Eastern Time

Session One

Government: Meeting with the Navajo Nation’s Water Rights Unit
Representative Quick debrief on the conversation and expectations going into the second guest speaker. 

Session Two

NGO: Meeting with Dig Deep: Navajo Water Project Representative Quick debrief on the conversation and expectations going into the third guest speaker. 

Session Three 

Big Picture: Meeting with Water First Representative Quick debrief on the conversation and expectations for the second day. 

Break for the day. 

Land Protection and Activism 

Sunday March 27, 2021 2PM - 6PM Eastern Time

Session One

Government: Meeting with theMonument Valley Tribal Park Representative. Quick debrief on the conversation and expectations going into the second guest speaker. 

Session Two

NGO: Meeting with Indigenous Environmental Network Representative Quick debrief on the conversation and expectations going into the third guest speaker. 

Session Three

Big Picture: Meeting with National Museum of the American Indian Representative. Quick debrief and conversation about a post-break activism project.