University of Montana/Missoula College/ Bitterroot College

The University of Montana’s Key Imperatives for Excellence in Native American Education   [pdf]

Action Plan
Recommendations Action Plan Next Steps Person Responsible Implementation Date

Recommendation 1: Senior level point of contact.

Identify point person for UM. We envision two people to fulfill this recommendation: a senior-level Equity/Diversity Officer and the Director of AISS, the most

immediate contact person.

1)  Determine Equity / Diversity Officer hire plan;

2)  Consult with faculty staff at the program/ department level;

3) Fill AISS Director position.

1)  Seth Bodnar;

2)  Nathan Lindsay;

3) VP of Enrollment and Strategic Communications

August 1, 2021
Recommendation 2: Department points of contact. Identify the positions that should be included.

1)  Confirm points of contact within each unit:

Financial Aid
Residential Life & Housing
Student Health & Couns.
Human Resources
Business Services (Student Accounts)

2)  Identify one advising POC in each College and School.

1)  VP of Enrollment and Strategic Communications/ Nathan Lindsay;

2)  Brian French

Inclusive Excellence-Salena Hill
Financial Aid- Emily Williamson

Res Life and Housing-Sandi Curtis and Jon Nugent

Admissions-Josh Hovis

Student Health and Counseling-Jeff Adams

Human Resources-Marcie Briggs

Advising-Darlene Sampson and Nathan Domitrovich

Business Services-Ruth Williams

August 1, 2021

Recommendation 3: Data collection and dissemination to evaluate Native American student success

1)  Assess data on Native American student success by major (and non-declared majors);

2)  Identify gateway courses & analyze why Native American students leave UM before degree-attainment;

3) Conduct a Native American student needs assessment.

1)  Utilize Banner and the EAB dashboard for data analysis;

2)  Assess current data gathering criteria;

3)  Finalize the needs assessment survey;

4)  Determine dept/unit-level data-keeping campus-wide

5) Evaluate student w/d data from OSS.

1)  Data analysis (Dawn Ressel);

2)  Analyze criteria (Dawn Ressel, Nathan Lindsay, Kate Shanley, VP of Enrollment and Strategic Communications)

August 1, 2021

Recommendation 4:

Professional development.
1) Provide a common American Indian cultural awareness & under-standing training; professional development training for all faculty and staff (OCHE will provide this course).
2) Provide additional trainings;
3) Unit/Dept. leadership will be trained to develop ongoing in- service training;
4) Institute plan roll-out and paradigm for going forward.

1)  Determine how to distribute OCHE course to all faculty/staff.

2)  Identify presenters for FDO and SD) offerings;

3)   Contract with professional trainer (s) regarding cultural sensitivity, humility, & safety workshop protocols;

4) Generate recommendations for retention strategies and ongoing activities

1)  OCHE Trainings (HRS oversight & tracking);

2)  Nathan Lindsay, Amy Kinch, Kate Shanley;

3)  Amy Kinch, Nathan Lindsay, Kate Shanley;

4) Nathan Lindsay, Kate Shanley, Amy Kinch, Brian French, AISS Director, NAS Chair.

August 1, 2021

Recommendation 5: Dissemination of professional development.

1)  Professional development will include information/sessions at New Faculty Orientation, DiverseU, and Advising Training.

2)  Deans & Sector Heads will disseminate information to depts./units for each to develop in-service plans

1)  Outline specific sessions that will be offered and determine which will be mandatory;

2)  Initiate plans for diversity & cultural understanding incentives in hiring, tenure, & promotion;

3) Advising training;

4) President & cabinet workshops;

5) Sector Heads & Deans workshops.

1) New Faculty Orientation (Amy Kinch) DiverseU (DAC Leadership);

2) Seth Bodnar in consultation w/ shared governance groups, and Nathan Lindsay and Kate Shanley.

3) Brian French

4) Amy Kinch, Kate Shanley;

5) Amy Kinch, Kate Shanley

August 1, 2021

Other Recommendations

Provide more support for Native American families to come to Orientation

1) Devise a plan based on best practices.

Emily Steger, Michelle Guzman, & AISS Director



To provide better transition to UM, focus on K-12 population recruiting in schools and assess outcomes.

1)  Identify current

2)  Develop ways of assessing outcomes.

1)  Emily Steger;

2)  Aaron Thomas;

3)  Identify other activities/ persons.



Develop website with readings, webinars, etc.

1)  Develop a plan based on current website configuration;

2)  Collaborate w/ NAS faculty and others as needed for appropriate content.

3)  Determine website management strategy for maintenance.

Provost's Office? Office for Student Success?



Engage Alumni in promoting college persistence, & in promoting cultural safety

1) Work with Indian Griz Alum and with UM Foundation to build Visiting Elder position.

Seth Bodnar; NAS Chair