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Native American Students Propose Campus Redesign
New Design to Better Reflect Native American Culture

Native American Students Propose Campus Redesign

From left: Brian Skeet, Rhonda Harvey, Professor Wanda Dalla Costa, Lauren Slim and Selina Martinez
Photo Credit: Marcus Chormicle/ASU Now

Six Native American students from Arizona State University, in Phoenix, recently drafted 16 different proposals that, if implemented, would bring more cultural representation of Native American heritage to the campus.

The designs proposed include adding pottery symbols to the Sun Devil Stadium, constructing a "welcome wall" that would include the 22 languages of the Native American tribes in Arizona, building a storytelling pavilion and creating a gathering place.

The students' work, along with professor Wanda Dalla Costa's philosophy of "design sovereignty," has been collected and published into a book titled Indigenous Placekeeping: Campus Design + Planning. The book was unveiled during a design workshop the students held on November 6, 2018 which also coincided with Native American Heritage month at ASU.

One of the main designs highlighted in the book is a map of canals the Hohokam Indians dug, which led to the creation of Phoenix. One of the students, architecture major Selina Martinez who is also a member of the Pascua Yaqui tribe, proposed including the canal map in the glass faA?ade of the Arizona Room in Hayden Library, which is currently being renovated according to one source.

Another one of the projects proposed was brought forth by landscape architect graduate student Lauren Slim, who suggested building a wall that included the word "welcome" in the 22 different languages from the tribes of Arizona.

To buy a hard copy or online version of "Indigenous Placekeeping: Campus Design + Planning," contact Professor Dalla Costa at You can also visit the ASU News post on the matter HERE.

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November 18, 2019, 3:16 am PDT

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