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Diversity & Inclusion
November 10, 2022

Honoring This Nation's Original Peoples

Native American Heritage Month

Dear SFC Community,

In 1990, a joint resolution of Congress signed by the President designated November as National Native American Heritage Month to recognize the many achievements of this nation’s original peoples and their descendants.

Brooklyn was originally inhabited by a group of Native Americans who called themselves the Lenape, which means "the People." They included the Nayack and the Canarsee, who cultivated corn and tobacco and fished in local rivers.

St. Francis College honors and celebrates the rich and varied history, cultures, traditions and contributions of the Lenape and other indigenous peoples who resided here more than 14,000 years before this land became the modern United States — and who continue to reside here today.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are currently 574 federally recognized Indian tribes in the United States, and nearly 3.7 million people in the U.S. population are of American Indian or Alaska Native heritage only (i.e., not identifying with any other race), including 1% of the students at St. Francis College, according to our most recent statistics.

National Native American Heritage Month gives us an opportunity to become more educated about some of the unique challenges faced by this population and to better understand how historical trauma — such as colonization, displacement and genocide — has impacted Native peoples.

The Office of Multicultural Affairs at St. Francis College has organized special programming for Native American Heritage Month, including an event titled Dream Catcher that is scheduled for today, November 10.

Please follow @SFCMulticultural on Instagram to continue to be educated and stay engaged as we celebrate Native American Heritage Month.

In peace and friendship,

Miguel Martinez-Saenz
St. Francis College

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