American Indian Studies: A Holistic Approach
Welcome to the official web site of Virginia Tech's American Indian Studies (AINS) program. As a program in the Department of Sociology, we offer several courses and a minor in American Indian Studies.
We believe that any successful American Indian Studies program must do more than simply educate a general student body on American Indian cultures and issues in a sensitive way. We believe that our curricula must exist in conjunction with all university programs pertinent to American Indians, and must depend on the impetus of indigenous people working within and beyond the university.
In keeping with Virginia Tech's status and mission as a land grant institution, we strive to serve our indigenous constituency, both as educators and as partners. Accordingly, our program serves as a vital conduit for university-tribal relations, the recruitment and retention of American Indian students and faculty, and Service-Learning initiatives in indigenous communities. Although our program has a regional focus, we offer a wide spectrum of courses, ranging from American Indian Literatures, American Indian Spirituality, and American Indian Arts, to native Peoples, of the Southeast, American Indians in Film, and Global Indigenous Rights -- reflecting the impressive and diverse expertise of our faculty.
In short, we embrace a holistic, collaborative approach to American Indian Studies in which university faculty and students develop and maintain meaningful partnerships. Accordingly, we maintain a tribal advisory board consisting of elders and leaders from all of Virginia's eight Indian Nations. We regard these representatives, and ultimately, all indigenous peoples as our colleagues.