Acknowledging that we reside on the homelands of Indigenous peoples is an important step toward recognizing the history and the original stewards of these lands. The intent of a land acknowledgment is to extend beyond spoken or written words. It must be implemented thoughtfully and meaningfully, and be reinforced by direct support and consideration of Indigenous peoples.
We arrived at this statement after connecting with Native American groups on all CU campuses, as well as with campus chief diversity officers, chancellors and system leadership. We will post it on university websites, as well as use it in selected publications and at events. Additionally, campuses and system will be able to use the statement in various ways as they deem most effective and appropriate.
As we gather, we honor and acknowledge that the University of Colorado’s four campuses are on the traditional territories and ancestral homelands of the Cheyenne, Arapaho, Ute, Apache, Comanche, Kiowa, Lakota, Pueblo and Shoshone Nations. Further, we acknowledge the 48 contemporary tribal nations historically tied to the lands that comprise what is now called Colorado.
Acknowledging that we live in the homelands of Indigenous peoples recognizes the original stewards of these lands and their legacies. With this land acknowledgment, we celebrate the many contributions of Native peoples to the fields of medicine, mathematics, government and military service, arts, literature, engineering and more. We also recognize the sophisticated and intricate knowledge systems Indigenous peoples have developed in relationship to their lands.
We recognize and affirm the ties these nations have to their traditional homelands and the many Indigenous people who thrive in this place, alive and strong. We also acknowledge the painful history of ill treatment and forced removal that has had a profoundly negative impact on Native nations.
We respect the many diverse Indigenous peoples still connected to this land. We honor them and thank the indigenous ancestors of this place. The University of Colorado pledges to provide educational opportunities for Native students, faculty and staff and advance our mission to understand the history and contemporary lives of Native peoples.