In a year-long consultative and deeply collaborative process with respected advisors from local Tribal Nations, the UMass Native Advisory Council co-developed a campus Land Acknowledgement. This Acknowledgement affirms our campus connection and relationship to the land the campus is built upon and our continued connection to the Nations who were the original inhabitants and caretakers of this land. The Land Acknowledgement also affirms our connection and responsibility to the 82 Native nations west of the Mississippi whose homelands were sold through the Morrill Act of 1862. The money from these sales were used to establish this campus as a land-grant institution. The Land Acknowledgement is part of a broader effort of building and sustaining relationships and partnerships with the Native Nations to whom we, as a university community, are connected.
Land acknowledgements are distinct from people acknowledgements. Land acknowledgements are an expression of gratitude and appreciation for the enduring relationship that exists between Indigenous Peoples and their traditional territories. Acknowledging these deep connections with land and water pushes back on colonization, which separates the two. For further details on the practice of Land Acknowledgement and how to appropriately utilize the acknowledgement, please see the land acknowledgement website as well as the official written and spoken land acknowledgements.
Out of respect to the thoughtful work of our local Tribal Nations and the UMass Native Advisory Council, it is not appropriate to modify or shorten the official statements.