Monday, June 16
At the University of Wisconsin we are met by Nichole Boyd, American Indian/Alaskan Native Coordinator/Advisor in the Center for Academic Excellence—part of the College of Letters and Science. Nichole shares the mission of the Center for Academic Excellence and answers our questions about UW’s American Indian student community. We then tour the Dejope residence hall, where we are joined by Residence Life Coordinator Jon Tingley.
Dejope is the name that the Ho-Chunk and other American Indians have used for the Madison area for thousands of years. In the Ho-Chunk language, Dejope means “Four Lakes,” which describes this area that include Lakes; Mendota, Monona, Waubesa and Kegonsa. In 2012 the U-W Division of University Housing worked with the Ho-Chunk Nation on a name for the new residence hall, because this area was home to the Ho-Chunk for thousands of years. The Ho-Chunk Nation Legislature passed a resolution allowing the University of Wisconsin to use Dejope as the residence hall’s name as a way to provide an opportunity to share with others the history of the area and of the Ho Chunk Nation.
A brief walking tour of other sites on campus concludes with lunch, kindly provided by our U-W hosts. During lunch we have the opportunity to speak with Center for Academic Excellence Director DeVon Wilson and other Center staff members. Our lively small group discussions about student learning and support finally has to be curtailed in order that we might remain on time with our travel schedule.