Congratulations to the 2024 Graduates!

Kennedy Pete and Matowacipi Horse have left an incredible impact on Emory’s campus. The NAISI departement held their annual Celebration of Native American and Indigenious Graduates to celebrate their achievements, journey, and community they have carried throughout their academic career. Now, Kennedy and Matowacipi stride into their lives as Emory alums.


Emory News Reports Student Kennedy Pete amplifies Native voices across campus

Emory News Center highlights student Kennedy Pete’s legacy at Emory. She looks back a her path to Emory, how she cemented her place on campus, and fostered community for Native students for years to come. Read her journey here: Emory News Center.

Sun 04/28 Scrutiny: Mummies and Museums

Ambassadors of culture, or sensationalist and disrespectful? The display of ancient Egyptian mummies in museums, historically celebrated by visitors eager to learn more about ancient Egypt, is a practice increasingly called into question, with many wondering who ultimately dictates the fate of those who have been mummified. Join Egyptologists Salima Ikram and Heba Abd el-Gawad in conversation as they discuss the complexity of shifting practices and ideologies, the ethics of displaying ancient Egyptian mummies in museums, and the ownership of ancient Egyptian culture.  Click here to register and click here to read more.

Time & Place: In light of recent events, Scrutiny: Mummies and Museums has been cancelled. Please be on the look out for updates. Thank you to all those who were looking forward to this event.

F 04/26 We Are Also Here. Maya Migrant Stories from Turtle Island

Join Dr. Emil’ Keme in discussing Mayan mirgrantion stories on Turtle Island.Register Here (Lunch Provided)

In due to recent events, We Are Also Here. Maya Migrant Stories from Turtle Island has been rescheduled to October 4, 2024. Thank you to all those who were looking forward to this event.

Time: Oct. 4, 12:00 – 1:30 pm

W 04/24 Curatorial Conversation: Nicholas Galanin & Miranda Kyle

Join Carlos Curator Miranda Kyle in conversation with Indigenous multimedia artist Nicholas Galanin (Tlingit and Unangax̂), whose work serves as a catalyst for dialogue about identity and change between Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities. This conversation takes place in celebration of the installation of his work I Think it Goes Like This (Gold), in the Art of the Americas galleries through a two-year loan from the Art Bridges Foundation. This event is made possible in part by the Grace Welch Blanton Lecture Fund. It is free and open to the public, and registration is required. To read more and register.

Time: 7:30 – 8:30pm

Place: Ackerman Hall

Dr. Melanie Frye Presents “Vnokeckv Omēcicen: Because of Love”

What does it mean for something to be “because of love”?

Melanie A. Frye addressed this big question on February 6 as she discussed her work with the Mvskoke (Creek/Seminole) Language and her Native youth language educational program with the Emory community. Language is inextricably tied to one’s history, community, and identity. As such, she began her lecture in the Mvskoke language, introducing herself as a citizen of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation, a member of the Bird Clan, and from her tribal town of Eufaula on the Canadian River.

Mvskoke, like other Muskogean languages, roots itself in the Muscogee homeland and continues in five Mvskoke-speaking sovereign Nations in present-day Oklahoma. It is a language built on relationality between the speaker and their subjects. Just as clans hold dominant kinship and daughter towns maintain their ties to their mothers even after the Indian Removal Act of 1830. Some towns did not survive the displacement, however, their people carried on by reforming their kinships into new towns. Ancestral homelands still connect to Muscogee people today by functioning as ceremonial grounds.The Mvskoke word etvlwv translates into English as “tribal town” or “band” among  Seminoles. . Etvlwv connotes that each town has a sovereign identity, with some like Thlopthlocco, receiving federal recognition as a tribal governance.  

Frye reflected on her language journey. Her father–a first language speaker, her great uncle, Ms. Gloria McCarty, her mother–Margaret McCain Moulding, Mr. Galen Cloud, and Mrs. Linda Wood were her Mvskoke mentors, teaching her the grammar, structure, building blocks, and intricacies of the language. Frye has also worked with linguistics Dr. Jack Martin to compile a Mvskoke dictionary which can be accessed at the Emory Library. Frye’s linguistic journey continues at University of Oklahoma, teaching others the Mvskoke language. In teaching the language, Professor Frye initially focused on grammar, nouns, tenses, and verbs, but later transitioned to learning sentences and translations to increase student’s understanding. Now she emphasizes student interactions and building up functional Mvskoke such as verb conjugation which holds more significance compared to English. Frye led an example of sentence constructions and encoded meanings within Mvskoke. 

Not many Mvskoke citizens are first language speakers. The youngest native speaker was already in his 50s. She stressed the importance of Mvskoke youths and Indigenous youths at large to use their language as a part of their sovereignty and culture. No place is this more evident than her work with the youth of the Thlopthlocco Tribal Town. Frye explained that Thlopthlocco was the descendant of their mother tribal town Tukvpvcce.  Thlopthlocco received federal recognition as a tribal government in 1939. 

With a grant and permission from the Thlopthlocco elders, Frye runs a language and culture camp aimed to develop Native youth’s language and culture connections. For the 2023 session, Frye incorporated more culturally Mvskoke elements such as “Pipē Nocv,” a Mvskoke lullaby created during removal, and Luvc Hopoyet Ayvnks, a story written by Dr. Frye and edited by Mrs. Linda Wood based on “Pipē Nocv.” Over the three days students learned the lullaby through crafts, drawings, and recording themselves singing “Pipē Nocv.” Each student had physical memories of Pipē Nocv to encourage themselves to continue learning and sharing with their parents. As campers mature, Dr. Frye hopes to include these fluent speakers assisting her students during their cultural activities for this coming camp.

Because of love for her community, her language, and her descendants, she embarked on her mission to teach the next generation their history, their language, their culture, and hopefully inspire their future.


Click here to watch the full lecture: Vnokeckv Omēcicen: Because of Love

Click here to learn some Mvskoke words: Mvskoke (Creek) Language Chart

Click here to watch Introduction to Translanguaging, Language Reclamation, and Justice-Oriented Language Pedagogies

Emory Wheel Highlights Dr. Melenie Frye “Working With the Mvskoke Language”

The Emory Wheel highlighted Dr. Melanie Frye’s presentation Vnokeckv Omēcicen (Because of Love): Working with the Mvskoke Language discussing language’s relation to its people, their history, and their future to a community of Emory students, faculty, and staff.

Emory hosts Mvskoke language teacher in continuation of relationship with Muscogee Nation