Spring 2022 Haury Program Native Pathways awards strengthen UArizona graduate students' research in Native American resilience
Four new graduate students from the University of Arizona have joined the cohort of Native Pathways awardees established by the Agnese Nelms Haury Program in Environment and Social Justice in 2021. The award, created by the Haury Program to strengthen UArizona programs and assist people devoted to Native and Indigenous resilience education, research, and outreach, supports the research of graduate students who bring knowledge and experience on matters relevant to Native Americans.
Chantel Harrison (Diné) is a Professional Science Master’s student at the UArizona Applied Biosciences program in the Controlled Environment Agriculture track and a student-trainee in the IndigeFEWSS (Indigenous Food, Energy, & Water Security and Sovereignty) project funded by the National Science Foundation. Chantel has experience developing research initiatives related to nutrition and nutrition education with a solid commitment to giving back to her community members. Chantel will be working with Dr. Murat Kacira, Director of the Controlled Environment Agriculture Center, to address food sovereignty, food insecurity, and the food-energy-water nexus in urban and rural Indigenous communities.
Christine Hodgson is a PhD candidate at the UArizona College of Nursing conducting the community-based research project Understanding the Resilience of Children Living on an Indian Reservation: A Mixed Methods Participatory-Social Justice Investigation with the Fort Peck Tribes in Montana. The study, approved by the UArizona and Fort Peck Tribes’ IRBs, aims to understand the resilience of children living on an Indian reservation to inform preventive health interventions by acknowledging tribal customs and beliefs and Indigenous Knowledge. In addition, the study will address health inequities and lay the groundwork for future research in other tribal communities. Christine will be working with Dr. Ruth E. Taylor-Piliae, Associate Professor at the UArizona College of Nursing.
Jacelle Ramon-Sauberan (Tohono O'odham) is a PhD candidate from the San Xavier District of the Tohono O'odham Nation. She is majoring in American Indian Studies with a minor in Journalism at the University of Arizona. Jacelle's research focuses on the San Xavier District's efforts to cope with the loss of water from the Santa Cruz River and the impact of applying the water allotment policy to the District. This community-based research argues that the Tohono O'odham people of San Xavier have demonstrated resilience by establishing two community organizations: the San Xavier Allottees Association and the San Xavier Cooperative Farm, which utilizes allotted lands. Jacelle will be working with professor Dr. Ronald Trosper of the UArizona American Indian Studies Department.
Natasha Chantel Riccio is a PhD student at the UArizona Arid Lands Resource Sciences department. Natasha's research is at the nexus of ethnobotany, ecology, genetics, and agriculture, incorporating multiple perspectives to build a larger whole. In particular, Natasha's research explores climate-resilient agricultural models through a transdisciplinary approach to studying human-plant relationships grounded in cultural Knowledge. Natasha is especially interested in Agave murpheyi, a species of agave domesticated by the Hohokam and farmed throughout the Sonoran Desert by Indigenous peoples. Natasha has begun conversations with collaborators from the San Xavier District, the San Xavier Coop Farm, and the Akimel O'odham community to develop a network of sanctuaries for these bio-culturally significant plants.
Congratulations to Jacelle, Chantel, Christine and Natasha! We are looking forward to learning more about your research.