Land acknowledgment provides an opportunity for BGSU to recognize the historical and cultural significance of the Indigenous people who lived and continue to live in this region. The BGSU land acknowledgment statement can be used in a wide variety of settings across campus in spoken, written and digital modalities.

Land Acknowledgment Statement for Written Delivery

Bowling Green State University and its affiliated campuses are situated in the homelands of numerous Indigenous and Native tribal nations. Our campus footprint holds many contemporary and historical ties to the Wyandot, Kickapoo, Miami, Odawa, Potawatomi and multiple other Indigenous tribal nations, present and past, who were forcibly removed to and from the area.

This area's history reveals an arterial network of complex economic and cultural significance. We recognize the stewardship, dedication, and presence of those for whom the Great Black Swamp and the Lower Great Lakes region is home. Through this statement, we aim to trace the past to the present to inform current conditions. It is within BGSU's responsibility as an academic institution to disseminate knowledge about Indigenous peoples and the University’s relationships, past and present, with tribal nations and individuals. 

As such, we recognize the forced relocation of tribal nations to and from this land and we strive to decolonize history and present conditions. We thank Indigenous individuals and communities who have been living and working on the land from time immemorial. This type of acknowledgment must not only be through statement, but in action and practice as well, in order to foster an inclusive, respectful and sustainable community.  

Land Acknowledgment Statement for Oral Delivery

The region in which Bowling Green State University and its campuses are situated inhabit the Great Black Swamp and the Lower Great Lakes region. This land is the homeland of the Wyandot, Kickapoo, Miami, Potawatomi, Odawa and multiple other Indigenous tribal nations, present and past, who were forcibly removed to and from the area. We recognize these historical and contemporary ties in our efforts toward decolonizing history and thank the Indigenous individuals and communities who have been living and working on this land from time immemorial

Get Connected

If you have questions or additional information, or to get involved, please contact BGSUlandack@bgsu.edu.

Frequently Asked Questions

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Land acknowledgment provides an opportunity for BGSU to recognize the historical and cultural significance of the Indigenous people who lived (and continue to live) in this region. The land acknowledgment statement can be used in a wide variety of settings across campus in spoken, written and digital modalities.

Through acknowledgment of the Indigenous peoples and tribal nations for whom this area was and is homeland, we can render Native histories and Native presence visible, express gratitude for their stewardship of the land and recognize the ways in which the work of decolonization needs to continue.

Ohio has no state or federally recognized tribal nations within its borders. This contributes to a perceived absence of Native peoples in the state. Many people assume that Native presence in Ohio is not a contemporary issue, and nothing could be further from the truth. Land acknowledgment is a first step that BGSU can take toward decolonization through additional programs, initiatives and partnerships.

The BGSU land acknowledgment statement is an expression of gratitude and appreciation. As such, we encourage the use of the statement in several ways:

  • Read the oral version of the BGSU land acknowledgment statement at the beginning of the first class or club or student org meeting of the semester.
  • Include the full written BGSU land acknowledgment statement within course syllabi, on the canvas shell, in club/student org materials, on department or program webpages or email signature lines.
  • Read the oral version of the BGSU land acknowledgment statement at the beginning of public guest lectures, workshops, activities or performances occurring beyond regular classroom or club/student org activities.

No. There is no requirement to include the BGSU land acknowledgment statement on your course syllabi. However, as BGSU strives to be an inclusive learning community, this statement on course syllabi is one of the ways in which faculty can support the Strategic and Foundational Objectives of BGSU toward a culture of inclusion and respect.

Please see below for written and audio pronunciation guides to each of the tribal nations’ names.

  • Wyandot (WY – un – dot)
  • Kickapoo (KICK – uh – poo)
  • Miami (my – AM – me)
  • Potawatomi (Pod – uh – WAH – doh –me)
  • Odawa (oh – DAH – wah)

Yes, this statement has been approved for use at the departmental and college levels. Feedback and support have been received from each of these entities: Undergraduate Student Government, Graduate Student Senate, Firelands Student Government, Classified Staff Council, Administrative Staff Council, College Council - Firelands, and Faculty Senate.

If you would like to join the committee, please contact bgsulandack@bgsu.edu.

How do I learn more?

Tribal Nations’ websites

Additional Resources

Further Reading