American Indian Resource Center Holds Inaugural Day of Welcome Ceremony

After a heavy morning thunderstorm and in the afternoon sun on a hot August day, leaders from Northwest Technical College’s American Indian Resource Center hosted an inaugural Day of Welcome ceremony to honor the start of the new academic year.

Chrissy Downwind, executive director of the AIRC, began the event with an official welcome and introduced Ojibwe Nation drum group, led by Rodney Johnson Jr. After an introductory honor song, Roxanne DeLille, dean of Indigenous and academic affairs at Fond Du Lac Tribal Community College in Cloquet, Minnesota, conducted a pipe ceremony that honored the four directions, land, water and sky that surround campus.

Fellow AIRC leaders Ann Humphrey, associate director of retention, and Ron Wilson, associate director of outreach, welcomed students from across campus and served mannomin (wild rice) with a side of fruit and berries with maple syrup.