UND students react to Native American remains found on campus
GRAND FORKS, N.D. (KVRR) — Many University of North Dakota students, particularly those with Native roots, are upset after hearing from school president Andrew Armacost.
The school committee are looking to identify which tribes the ancestral remains belong to. Once identified, they said they’ll have two years to return them.
A member from UND’s American Indian Center says, “We’re here, we’re listening and we’re still processing and we would like the media to respect that.”
“I was really surprised because I’ve never been somewhere where remains have been found before. I thought it was weird they would find them because all these buildings are really old, so I thought they’d probably find them sooner,” UND student Gracie Bowles said.
When some students found out their classes had been canceled, they were initially confused but quickly understood when the school president released his statement.
“I thought it was a little strange because I feel like a lot of people use the buildings every day, so I wasn’t sure why they were just now cleaning out a closet and why they had just found out about what had happened,” UND student Anna Brame said.
Some believe the school should offer more help for those who are affected.
“My psychology professor actually canceled class for today and tomorrow and offered resources to those who felt personally affected by all that happened,” Bowles said.
“I think that more teachers should reach out to the students and see how they are feeling and see if they do need to cancel classes if that’s a group decision they want to do,” Brame said.
The university has offered support from native psychologists and doctoral students. Members of the school’s American Indian Center are feeling emotionally drained and wonder how and why it ended up on campus.
Many also wonder why it took school officials so long to release this information. A member of the American Indian Center says some of the artifacts include documentation from the early 20th century.
A school official says, including online students, there are more than 470 people associated with UND’s American Indian Center
Native students were notified of this news Monday. Most were in person.