Student Research

EQI Undergraduate Research Fellowship Program

Student research opportunities abound at UW-Milwaukee and the Electa Quinney Institute is honored to be a part of that tradition. Research is not just doing experiments in a lab but can include such diverse projects as understanding and developing language curriculum, curating an art show at a local gallery, investigating the modern use of language around native plants and medicine, or comparing corn growing methods. These projects provide many opportunities for student participants to develop many marketable skills that assist them in finding jobs upon graduation. These skills include time management, goal setting and achievement, writing and other communication skills, and critical thinking.

Students: If you are a current UWM student interested in participating in a paid research project with EQI, please look for the application window to be open again in Summer of 2019 (budget pending). While most of our previous student participants have been citizens of various native nations, any student that is interested in research that is aligned with our mission, is welcome to apply.

Faculty: The same is true of interested faculty. The only way we can continue to support the diverse research interests of our students is through the support and collaboration with various faculty and community partners. If you are interested in being a research mentor/ supervisor to one of our students, please go to the Research Mentor Application form. Applications from faculty are accepted on a rolling basis. There is a small stipend available to those that participate in supporting our students.

If you would like more information, please contact Patricia Najera, PhD.

McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program

UW-Milwaukee is proud to be a Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program campus. Margaret Noodin, EQI Director, first served as mentor for a McNair scholar in 2016 and has supported at least one scholar each subsequent summer.

StudentNicholas James Stamates
UWM area of studyReligious Studies/Pre-Law
Identity:Oneida Nation of Wisconsin
Research Title:Nixon and the Chief:  Nixon’s Indian Policy, California Indians and Nixon’s Indian Mentor Wallace Newman 
Project Summary:A historical account of how President Richard Milhous Nixon life was touched by Wallace “Chief” Newmann, a tribal leader of the La Jolla Band of Luiseño Indians.   
Project Advisor:Dr. Michael Wilson, UWM
Research Impact:Provide unknown history about the Nixon Administration and how he chartered a new course in Indian Affairs by ending termination and ushering in the current era of federal American Indian policy. Publication of article "Nixon and the Chief: Quakers, the Return of Blue Lake and Nixon's Indian Mentor Wallace J. Newman" (https://dc.uwm.edu/rsso/2019/panel2B/1/)
Key Words:Richard Nixon Indian Policy, Wallace “Chief” Newman, La Jolla Band of Luiseno Indians, California Indians.
Student:Jamie Sparks
Academic Program:Biomedical Sciences
Identity:Stockbridge-Munsee Community-Band of Mohican Indians
Research Title:The Use of Health Care Facilities by Self-Identifying American Indian Students on the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Main Campus
Project Summary:The purpose of this research is to determine how the self-identifying American Indian students on the UWM main campus access health care, which types of health care are utilized and if a disparity to health care access exists.
Project Advisor:Dr. Patricia T. Nájera, UWM
Research Impact:Results will be used to determine if education about health care programming and options for American Indians in the Milwaukee area is needed for students attending the UWM.
Key Words:Tribal Indian Health Care Centers (urban and rural), Indigenous health disparities, Indigenous self-identification.
Student:Jamie Kellicut
Academic Program:Social Work (major) and Psychology (minor)
Identity:Lac Courte Oreilles Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians
Research Title:Practice Considerations in Working with American Indian Elders
Project Summary:The purpose of this research is to determine what social work professionals need to know when they are serving American Indian elders. This research project will document knowledge from elders who experienced and suffered through generations of trauma and substance abuse.
Project Advisor:Dr. Colleen Galambos, UWM – Helen Bader School of Social Welfare
Research Impact:Provide a voice of to the elder Native American population and their resilience and persistence in urban areas. Publication in the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Aging Spring /Summer 2019 Issue (https://uwm.edu/socialwelfare/wp-content/uploads/sites/56/2019/06/DecolonizingPractice.AgingNLReprint.pdf)
Key Words:Native American Trauma, Native American Substance Abuse, Indigenous elders, Discrimination, Untold Stories
Student:Nyia Garrett
Academic Program:Dual Enrollment-Student at Ronald Reagan High School (MPS)
Identity:Colombian (South America) - American
Research TitleAn elder in Residence
Project Summary:This project focuses on the story of “An Elder in Residence” and her memories of the Menomonee Reservation, the resilience of her family and the beauties of mother earth. Video posted on XXXXX.
Project Advisor:Dr. Patricia T. Nájera, UWM – Electa Quinney Institute
Research Impact:Provide a voice to an elder who embraces traditional teachings passed down by elders and personal participation in talking circles, pow wows, sweat lodges and language camps. Winifred always taught anyone she encountered with gratitude and believed in the power of a hug.
Key Words:Native American elder and teachings.
Student:BillyJack O. Parent
Academic Program:B.A., Linguistics; Teaching English as a Second Language
Identity:Lac Courte Oreilles Band of Lake Superior Ojibwe
Research Title:Tribal Governance Systems
Project Summary:To examine the history, policy and government relations as they to federally recognized nations in North America.
Project Advisor:Dr. Patricia T. Nájera and Dr. Margaret Noodin, UWM – Electa Quinney Institute
Research Impact:To share information about the future of respecting sovereign identity and dual-citizenship in the United States.
Key Words:Sovereign identity, dual citizenship, traditional teachings, indigenous governance and leadership.
Student: Morgan Thiel  
Academic Program: Nursing/American Indian Studies Certificate Ojibwe 
Identity: Lake Superior Band of Bad River Chippewa Indians (Ojibwe) 
Research Title: Indigenous Voices - Sharing the Wisconsin Sky – Ojibwe Star Story and Cultural Craft Program 
Project Summary: Research and preparation for cultural craft workshops, including drum making, rattle making, puzzle pouches and dream catchers, learning songs in my language, tribal star stories.  Created curriculum for craft making workshops.  
Research Mentor: Dr. Margaret Noodin and Dr. Jean Creighton, UWM 
Research Impact: Presentation at UWM’s Planetarium and EQI Craft Days 
Key Words Cultural practices, Star Connections-Bear Hunt Story 
About the studentAbout the research project
Jamie Kellicut,
B.S., Social Work (major), Psychology (minor)
Lac Courte Oreilles Band of Lake Superior Ojibwe
Research Title:Prevalence of discrimination of American Indians in the Wisconsin Educational System
Project Summary:Research on the prevalence of discrimination for American Indians in the Wisconsin Educational System.
Project Advisor:Dr. Margaret Noodin and Dr. Patricia Najera, UWM
Research Impact:Presenter at UWM Undergraduate Research Symposium (April 2018)
Key Words:American Indian: Mental health, Discrimination, Cultural Practices, Coping Skills, and Identity
Michael Nelson
B.S., Biology
Lakota
Research Title: Chinibwaakaa (s/he is wise): The Story of an Elder in Residence
Project Summary: Documentation of the oral history of UWMÂ’s Elder in Residence, strengthening and building community engagement efforts.
Project Advisor: Dr. Patricia Najera, UWM
Research Impact: Presented at Wisconsin Indian Education Association Conference (April 2018); McNair Scholar 2018
Key Words: Indigenous culture, Multi-media production
Jamie Sparks
B.S., Biomedical Sciences/ Pre-Med
Stockbridge Munsee Mohican
Research Title:Indigenous Voices - Sharing the Wisconsin Sky – Stockbridge Munsee Mohican
Project Summary: Research on the traditions of language, star connections, traditional music and cultural images from the Stockbridge Munsee Mohican Nation.
Project Advisor:Dr. Margaret Noodin and Dr. Jean Creighton, UWM
Research Impact:Co-presentation at UWM’s Planetarium, Application to Indian Health Service Scholarship Program
Key Words:Stockbridge Munsee Mohican: Cultural Practices and Star Connections
Jennifer Sparks
B.S., Social Work; Certificate in American Indian Studies
Stockbridge Munsee Mohican
Research Title: Indigenous Voices - Sharing the Wisconsin Sky – Stockbridge Munsee Mohican; Awareness of Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA)
Project Summary: Research on the traditions of language, star connections, traditional music and cultural images from the Stockbridge Munsee Mohican Nation.
Project Advisor:Dr. Margaret Noodin and Dr. Jean Creighton, UWM; Dr. Patricia Najera, UWM
Research Impact: Invitation to UWM's Department of Social Work to consider changes to reading material and learning objectives related to ICWA.
Key Words:American Indian children and ICWA training
Nathan Breu
B.A., American Indian Studies Major (awarded 2018)
Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians

Research Title: Minowaki Chibizhiwag Dewei’igan: In the Good Land, the Panthers Drum
Project Summary:Documentation about the creation, history, and legacy of Panthers Drum by Buck Martin.
Project Advisor:Dr. Margaret Noodin, UWM
Research Impact:Accepted into Graduate School, Master's Program in History, AOP Recipient (2018-2021)
Key Words:Native American Drum, Indigenous Music, Ethnobotany, Anishinaabemowin language
Paul Smith
B.A., History
Oneida Nation of Wisconsin
Research Title:Indigenous Voices - Sharing the Wisconsin Sky – Oneida Star Story
Project Summary:Research on the traditions of language, star connections, traditional music and cultural images from the Oneida Nation.
Project Advisor:Dr. Margaret Noodin and Dr. Jean Creighton, UWM
Research Impact:Interest in serving tribal focused organizations.
Key Words:Cultural practices, Star Connections
Morgan Thiel
Nursing/American Indian Studies Certificate
Ojibwe Lake Superior Band of Bad River Chippewa Indians (Ojibwe)
Research Title: Indigenous Voices - Sharing the Wisconsin Sky – Ojibwe Star Story and Cultural Craft Program
Project Summary:Research and preparation for cultural craft workshops, including drum making, rattle making, puzzle pouches and dream catchers, learning songs in my language, tribal star stories. Created curriculum for craft making workshops.
Project Advisor:Dr. Margaret Noodin and Dr. Jean Creighton, UWM
Research Impact:Presentations at UWM's Planetarium and EQI Craft Days
Key Words:Cultural practices, Star Connections-Bear Hunt Story
Monea Warrington
M.A., Anthropology /Museum Studies Certificate
Menominee Nation of Wisconsin
Research Title:Indigenous Voices - Sharing the Wisconsin Sky – Menominee Star Story
Project Summary:Research on star stories of Menominee Nation.
Project Advisor:Dr. Margaret Noodin, UWM
Research Impact:Presentation at AAA conference, Accepted into UWM’s Graduate School Master’s Program in History/Museum Studies, AOP Recipient (2018-2021), Researcher on NSF – Documenting Endangered Languages grant.
Key Words: American Indians, Endangered Languages, Anthropology, Youth language camp, Menominee Language
StudentNathan Breu
UWM area of studyB.A., American Indian Studies Major
Identity:Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians
Research Title:Ninaandagikenimaanaanig Zaagigiig: A survey of current plant use by Wisconsin Ojibwe tribes.
Project summary:Interviewed 10 elders about traditional uses of plants, cultural interpretations and language use in the environment.
Project Advisor:Dr. Cary Miller, UWM
Research Impact:Presentation at Algonquian Conference (2017), McNair Scholar
Key Words:American Indians, Ethnobotany, Anishinaabemowin language
StudentBillyJack O. Parent
UWM area of studyB.A., Linguistics; Teaching English as a Second Language
Identity:Lac Courte Oreilles Band of Lake Superior Ojibwe
Research Title:Ezhi-naakonigeyang: Anishinaabe Political Traditions
Project summary:This project involves research on current and historical knowledge about Anishinaabe political traditions. The goal is to examine the framework for leadership and organizational structure in tribal government.
Project Advisor:Dr. Margaret Noodin, UWM
Research Impact:Study Abroad to Japan (2017/2018
Key Words:American Indians, Treaties, Clan leadership
StudentMonea Warrington
UWM area of studyB.A. Anthropology/American Indian Studies Certificate (Awarded 2017)
Identity:Menominee Nation of Wisconsin, Arikara Nation (North Dakota)
Research Title:Omaegnomenew Kiketwan: Menominee Conjugation Lesson Assessment
Project Suummary:Research and planning for Menominee Website Project highlighting language revitalization efforts for Menominee language. Develop curriculum for Menominee Language Verb Lesson.
Project Advisor:Ben Grignon, Menominee Indian High School and Dr. Margaret Noodin, UWM
Research Impact:McNair Scholar, Presented work at 2017 Anishinabemowin-Teg, Inc. Conference
Key Words:American Indians, Endangered Languages, Anthropology, Youth language camp, Menominee Language
StudentCynthia Bergloff
UWM area of studyB.A. American Indian Studies Major (awarded 2018)
Identity:Grand Traverse and Grand River Ottawa
Research Title:Native Voices Art Exhibit
Project Summary:Develop outreach and recruitment plan for key native-serving organizations and leaders to participate in Native Voices Art Exhibit.
Project Advisor:Xela Garcia, Walker’s Point Center for the Arts
Research Impact:Acceptance into UWM Teacher Training and Administrative Leadership Program – Post Bac Program and Institute of American Indian Arts Master’s program
Key Words:American Indians, Indigenous/Native art, Youth Art, Anishinaabemowin language