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Land Acknowledgments

Official SBCTC Land Acknowledgment

As a step toward honoring truth and achieving healing and reconciliation, we open today by acknowledging the traditional territories of the Squaxin Island Tribe of the South Puget Sound.

The people of the Squaxin Island Tribe lived and prospered along the shores of the southernmost inlets of the Salish Sea for untold centuries. We acknowledge throughout time immemorial, the people of the Squaxin Island Tribe’s strong cultural connection with water, and traditionally known as the People of the Water. Today, we honor the descendants of the Squaxin Island Tribe, the People of the Water, on which Washington State Board of Community and Technical Colleges office resides.

While our colleges are distributed across many first people’s nations, we remain dedicated to opening our time together by honoring those that came before us.

We know that such statements only become truly meaningful when coupled with authentic relationships and sustained commitment, and as such, we commit to continued efforts to build our collective understanding and action to foster authentic Tribal community connections. (Endorsed by Council Chairman Kristopher Peters, Squaxin Island Tribe. March 2023)

Land Acknowledgments Talking Points

  • The use of land acknowledgments to start gatherings and events is becoming increasingly common. While colleges are distributed across many first people’s nations, we remain dedicated to opening our time together by honoring those that have been here since time immemorial.
  • In our own path to creating a land acknowledgment, we embraced tribal consultation with the Squaxin Island Tribe. Tribal leaders and elders are the experts and knowledge-bearers who generously shared their perspectives and guidance with SBCTC. 
  • As a state agency, collaborating with sovereign Tribal nations, this work is done through Government to Government (G2G) relations that breakdown the western-centered relationship or academic approach to the traditional work of our community and technical colleges, whose authority predominately lives with non-Native academics.
  • The land acknowledgment is one part of the greater goal. 
  • This is a living statement and lives in the spirit of our relationships and collaboration with our Tribal partners and communities as we grow together.
  • We know that such statements only become meaningful through commitment and continued efforts to build our collective understanding with Tribal partners.

Facilitating Question

  • How do you work in partnership and collaboration with your local Tribal communities?

 

Contacts

Glenda Breiler
Director, Tribal Government Affairs
gbreiler@sbctc.edu
360-724-3782

Maya Esquivido
Program Manager
mesquivido@sbctc.edu
916-396-0220

Courtnay Llacuna
Administrative Assistant
cllacuna@sbctc.edu
360-704-4317

 

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