University faculty push for Ojibwe, Dakota languages to become majors|
Monday, September 08 2014
|Written by Molly Michaletz, The Minnesota Daily,|
Some faculty members within the University of Minnesota’s Department of American Indian Studies are trying to preserve two languages indigenous to the state.
Currently, students don’t have the option to major in Ojibwe or Dakota, the two languages offered within the department. But with a recent push from veteran and new professors, students may eventually be able to major in the languages.
Brendan Fairbanks, a long-serving assistant American Indian studies professor, said creating the option to major in each of the languages would allow students studying the languages to receive better jobs after graduation and would ensure the languages stay alive.
If the languages remain used, she said students who know them “can go on to teach their children the language.”
University students can currently receive teaching certificates – named the Dakota Iapi Unspewicakiyapi and the Ojibwemodaa Eta! certificates – that allow them to teach the languages at immersion schools.
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