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The American Indian Studies Center

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The core goals and objectives of the American Indian Studies Center (AISC) are to facilitate research and research collaborations; disseminate research results through research conferences, meetings and other activities; strengthen graduate and undergraduate education by providing students enrolled in the American Indian Studies program with training opportunities and access to facilities; to seek extramural research funds; and carry out university and public service programs related to the Center's research expertise. In addition, the AISC maintains a reference library, publishes books as well as the American Indian Culture and Research Journal, provides academic counseling and support to students, actively promotes student recruitment and retention, supports academic programs in American Indian Studies (AIS) and administers postdoctoral and predoctoral fellowships and research awards through the Institute of American Cultures. The Center acts as a focal point for scholars, staff, students and community members who are interested in research, education, and issues about Native Americans. Our research focus is broad and encompasses topics ranging from the contemporary urban Indian experience to issues within tribal communities. We also attempt to balance a national focus with attention to underserved and often overlooked California tribes. Underlying our mission is an acknowledgment that the indigenous peoples of North America are generally poorly understood and have distinct social, cultural, economical, political, and legal needs by virtue of their status as indigenous nations colonized by a major world power.

The American Indian Studies Center is an Organized Research Unit (ORU), and as such, its mission is to promote research, education, and community service within an academic framework. As an ORU, the Center is headed by a Director who is a tenured member of the UCLA faculty. The Center's goals are accomplished by assisting campus departments with recruiting American Indian faculty and supporting research by faculty and students. The Center acts as a focal point for faculty, pre and post doctoral fellows, and students to conduct research on issues about Native Americans. Institute of American Cultures (IAC) grants, external grants, committees, and teaching bring faculty and students to the Center from a variety of departments.