The Wilbert H. Ahern Distinguished Lecture Series is made possible, in part, by gifts and contributions to the Bert and Janet Ahern American Indian Studies Enhancement Fund. The late Wilbert H. Ahern was a member of the Morris faculty from 1967 until he retired in 2010 as a Morse-Alumni Distinguished Professor of History and during his tenure was a founding faculty member of the American Indian Studies program.
Seven Generations of Indigenous Education at Morris
Villeneuve presented the Morris campus history as a story told in three acts defined by a set of educational “experiments” on its campus: the “Indian Boarding School” (1887-1909), the West-Central School of Agriculture, (1910-1963), followed by the University of Minnesota Morris (1960 to the present). While these are undoubtedly important chapters in the institutional history of this place, what happens when we center the uncommonly long and enduring presence of Native learners here? This talk reconceptualizes the history (and perhaps even the future) of the place called Morris into seven generations by highlighting the distinctive experience of Indigenous students here over the last 135 years.
Villeneuve earned his PhD in history from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, where he studied in the fields of U.S. History since 1865, American Indian history, and environmental history. Currently, he is pursuing research on a number of projects at the intersection of progressive education and federal Indian boarding schools. At UW-Madison, he teaches courses on American Indian history, Native studies, and Indigenous education.