MSU-Bozeman Implementation Action Plan
Updated July 2023


Montana State University-Bozeman (MSU) strongly supports the AIMA Council mission statement in having the Montana University System (MUS) become the premier public higher education system in the country for American Indian students, administrators, faculty and staff.   MSU is committed to do everything we can to remove barriers, obstacles and challenges that hinder American Indian student success. 

In order to support this mission, MSU-Bozeman is dedicated to the following action plan for implementation of the AIMA Council Recommendations.

1. Identify an individual at each campus who is at a more senior level who will serve as a point of contact for American Indian students.

ACTION PLAN:  The point of contact for American Indian students will be the Director of American Indian /Alaska Native Student Success (AIANSS). This person is currently co-Chair of the Council of American Indian Programs (CAIP) and the person in this position has strong trusting relationships with American Indian students, making it a natural fit for this role.

MSU’s Senior Diversity and Inclusion Officer (SDIO) will be the primary administrative contact for departments, institutions, or others wishing to discuss issues regarding American Indian student success at MSU. The Senior Diversity and Inclusion Officer works to promote an institutional culture that values inclusion and to guide MSU’s progress towards diversity, equity, and inclusion goals.

NEXT STEPS:  The Director of AIANSS and the SDIO will develop a communication plan to make sure that issues are being shared and addressed thoughtfully as they arise. As both contacts are members of the Council of American Indian Programs, they will also discuss a process for ensuring that CAIP members are aware of these roles so that appropriate referrals are made.



2. Assign departmental points of contact who have the unique “cultural perspective” to serve American Indian students most effectively.

ACTION PLAN:  Each MSU department below has named a staff person as a point of contact, including:

Financial Aid:     Julie Watson
University Student Housing:     Korrin Fagenstrom

Anders Groseth (undergraduate)
Melis Edwards (graduate)

Student Health Partners:  Sandy Newton
Registrar’s Office: Kandi Gresswell
Human Resources:   Gerre Maillet
Advising: Emily Edwards (undergraduate)
Donna Negaard (graduate)
Campus Data: Becca Belou

NEXT STEPS:  Disseminate the list of departmental contacts so that all contacts and other colleagues are aware of these resources. To be completed by September 2023.

During AY 2019-2020, a group of MSU leaders met with the Montana Tribal College Presidents to discuss goals and challenges around Tribal College transfer student success. This group of MSU representatives has continued to meet regularly to address issues that were raised, develop new communications and pathways, and to discuss innovative strategies for strengthening our practices. This group will continue meet as a group into AY 2024.

PERSON RESPONSIBLE:  Vice President Swinford (departmental contacts), Ariel Donohue (Tribal College transfer support group)

IMPLEMENTATION DATE:  Dates vary, see individual action items

3. Collect and share basic data on American Indian students relative to improving the use of data and information to investigate American Indian enrollment and student success.

ACTION PLAN:  MSU annually collects and publishes enrollment, retention and graduation data on American Indian students.   Please review this data here:



4. Provide a common American Indian cultural and sensitivity professional development for all faculty and staff.

ACTION PLAN: The online Indian Education for All (IEFA) course provided by the MUS has been rebuilt within an MSU platform and it is now accessible for all faculty and staff at

NEXT STEPS: The Communications team will continue to include regular, university-wide notifications that all faculty and staff are to complete this training. The SDIO will regularly track and report on the number of faculty and staff who have completed the training, and will work on ways to provide more in-depth professional development opportunities to the MSU community. In the coming year, we will explore the possibility of moving MSU’s IEFA training to the Vector platform to increase course visibility, encourage employee participation, and simplify reporting.



5. Request campuses to incorporate American Indian professional development in all new employee orientation.

ACTION PLAN:  Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO) will ensure that the IEFA training is included in the monthly New Employee Orientation for all incoming staff members. The Director of the Center for Faculty Excellence (CFE) will ensure that information about this professional development training is shared with new faculty at the annual New Faculty Orientation. It will also be regularly communicated to faculty and staff via emails, newsletters, and other communications. 

NEXT STEPS:  Continue to include information about the training in monthly New Employee Orientations. Include information at Fall 2023 New Faculty Orientation.

PERSON RESPONSIBLE:  Jeannette Grey Gilbert (CHRO) and Michael Babcock (Director, CFE)