2021 LITTLEMOON SCHOLAR
Anii, Mueshka Mikaan Bemosed, Mukwa Dodaim, Bowheting Ndoonjibah.
My Ojibwa name is Man Who Walks the Red Road, I am from the Bear Clan, and my ancestral home is Bowheting or place of gathering (known as the area of Sault Sainte Marie, Michigan).
My name is Seth Allard, and I am a second year PhD student in the Social Work and Anthropology Program at Wayne State University. I am a member of the Sault Sainte Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians (Ojibwa). Being raised in Northern Michigan, and frequent childhood visits to my Tribe’s ancestral home and Tribal community, instilled a respect for nature, our Anishinaabe traditions, culture and history, and a sense of service to our community, environment, and our Seventh Generation. Reconnecting with traditions and our teachings as an adolescent and again after serving in the US Marine Corps kindled a deep belief in service to our community, especially vulnerable populations, such as youth and individuals experiencing heightened suicide risk and mental health challenges, and communities that face chronic health disparities.
I applied for the Walter Littlemoon Indigenous Researcher Internship Scholarship after receiving the call for applicants through the American Anthropological Association website and was selected for the position in Summer 2021. During my eight-week internship experience, the Team at Sweet Grass supported two immediate goals – to gain hands-on experience in applied research, and to receive support in expanding scholarship, leading to a future publication. I had central roles in developing draft materials for publication of a chapter on Indigenous ecological models, conducted literature reviews and collected critical sources for current and future economic and community development projects, examined materials for economic recovery plans, provided thematic analyses of surveys, interviews, and focus groups to inform expansion of technical assistance and training, and drafted a section for economic resilience for one of our Tribal partners. Sweet Grass provided me the opportunity to have a direct impact on Tribal communities seeking to improve their social, economic, and cultural environments.
Although life during COVID-19, not to mention the daily routine for a father of a very active child and husband of a medical student, is often hectic, Sweet Grass recognized the importance of wellbeing, paying attention to the needs of teammates and working with my schedule to optimize my role within the group. My experience as a Walter Littlemoon scholar provided me with the opportunity to directly serve our Tribal communities, contribute to our Seventh Generation, and gain valuable insight into the field of applied research and consulting.
(Thank you very much!!!)