New Bachelor of Arts in Ojibwe Language for Fall 2016
The goal of the Ojibwe Language major is to best situate both heritage and non-heritage Ojibwe students to be able to positively intervene in the cultural life of the state’s Ojibwe communities, by contributing to the revitalization of the Ojibwe language. As a land grant institution, the University has a mission to contribute to the state’s communities and the proposed major will help fulfill that mission. The department also prioritizes local American Indian community engagement and advocacy. One of the single best ways to create positive change within our communities is to instill pride and celebrate cultural traditions like language at an early age.
What distinguishes this program from any other is our use of both academically rigorous grammatical instruction (supported by linguistic research) coupled with the use of immersion techniques inside the classroom. This method has proven to be a very powerful combination in helping our students reach a high level of proficiency in the Ojibwe language. Students who complete the program to attain this high proficiency will have the foundational skills to contribute to Ojibwe language community building by bringing the Ojibwe language back into the home, to go into the high-demand field of immersion teaching, and to work in language preservation programs.
Students participating in the BA Ojibwe Language program will:
- be more prepared to fill an ever-growing need for immersion teacher positions;
- graduate with a more sophisticated knowledge of the Ojibwe language in general;
- have more time to increase their fluency under instructor supervision;
- increase their knowledge of immersion pedagogy;
- earn a bachelor’s degree in the Ojibwe language (rather than a certificate) thereby increasing both their Ojibwe language credentials and earning potential upon graduation.