BOZEMAN, Mont. - Montana State University honored national Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons Awareness Day on campus Thursday.
American Indian students and staff members shared their culture with the community and the history behind the MMIP movement.
The events people attended were a self-guided art exhibit inside the American Indian Hall, a panel discussion about MMIP, a prayer walk, and a healing jingle dress and round dance with the Black Whistle Singers.
Nicholas Ross-Dick, program manager for MSU’s American Indian/Alaskan Native Students said, " The jingle dance was originally started during the 1918 Spanish Flu Pandemic and it originated in a different region of the country by ultimately its goal is to engage in the healing process."
The day ended with lunch and then people gathered together for a talking circle.
Everyone honoring MMIP on campus was encouraged to wear the color red to help raise awareness in the hopes of bringing the MMIP crisis to an end.
"Especially taking action steps and working with the American Indian Council and other people who are just passionate about this topic and just raising awareness rather than just talking the talk now we are walking the walking and hoping to continue to do more," MSU Student and Co-President MMIP Club Nakola "Kola" Bad Bear said.
The Native American community at MSU said the event felt more emotional this year because it was held in the college's new American Indian Hall.
MSU Student and Co-President MMIP Club, Maleeya Knows His Gun said, "The space is home to me so to be able to have our events here and just being able to showcase that in our new home is amazing. It is just a different feeling for sure."
More information about the American Indian Hall and ways to help get involved with the MMIP movement at MSU can be found here.