Virginia Tech® home

Indigenous Peoples Day Oct 8th 2018


Virginia Tech Observes Indigenous Peoples Day on October 8, 2018

As part of Virginia Tech’s ongoing commitment to InclusiveVT, the university will observe Indigenous Peoples Day. InclusiveVT is the university’s institutional and individual commitment to Ut Prosim (that I may serve) in the spirit of community, diversity, and excellence. 

Indigenous Peoples Day is a student led event that will take place for the first time on Monday, October 8, 2018. In an open letter to the community, President Tim Sands noted that the Virginia Tech community is supportive and respectful and recognizes the history of our campus spreads beyond the university’s founding in 1872.  The Tutelo/Monacan people are the historical stewards of the land on which this community works and lives, and have a continuing connection to the natural resources that support our endeavors. 

As we continue to become more inclusive for all Indigenous people who are part of the Virginia Tech community, the university established the American Indian and Indigenous Community Center in 2016.  This past spring, the Native@VT organization made a proposal to the Virginia Tech Commission on Equal Opportunity and Diversity to honor Indigenous People’s Day annually on the second Monday in October. President Sands issued a Presidential Policy Memorandum designating Monday, October 8, as Indigenous People’s Day at Virginia Tech for this year, making it possible for Indigenous Peoples Day to be observed in 2018 while also allowing time for the annual observance proposal to be considered by the appropriate governance bodies. 

Indigenous Peoples' Day is intended to celebrate Native Americans and commemorate their shared history and culture. This special day is an official city and state celebration in various localities around the country. 

On Monday, the celebration will begin with a presentation by the Drum Group on the Drillfield at 11:30 a.m. The day will end at Squires Student Center with a film screening of the 2006 Documentary, “Canary Effect” which looks into the effects that the United States and its policies have on the Indigenous peoples who are residents. The screening will begin at 6pm in Squires Room 122. An informational booth will be set up for participants to learn more about Indigenous Peoples Day at Squires Booth A. 

All these events are free and open to the public.

Hallema Sharif 

Links to University Relation Story and President Sands' Letter regarding Indigenous People Day:


Letter from Sands: