Publications & Presentations


2016: Dr. Mary Ann Jacobs edited American Indian Women of Proud Nations: Essays on History, Language and Education (Peter Lang, 2015) with Dr. Cherry Beasley and Dr. Ulrike Wiethaus. This multidisciplinary collection of nine previously unpublished essays presents new research in three interlocking domains: tribal history with a special emphasis on Native women in the Southeast, language revitalization efforts and the narrative knowledge inherent in indigenous oral culture, and traditional educational systems in the context of the ongoing colonization of American Indian educational practices and values. This volume highlights Southeastern Indian issues and demonstrates the unique situation of women in tribes lacking (full) federal recognition or a more inclusive and multidisciplinary discussion of Native women in more than one tribal nation. Southeastern themes are linked with topics of concern by other tribal nations to show commonalities and raised awareness about the central experiences and contributions of Native women in the encounter and ongoing struggle with Euro-American systems of oppression and cultural erasure.

April, 2015: Dr. Jane Haladay wins award for best scholarly publication at the 2015 Native American Literature Symposium. Dr. Haladay won the Beatrice Medicine Award for best critical essay of the year on Native American literature, given by the Charles Redd Center for Western Studies at Brigham Young University. The article is titled "Keeping It Real: Simon Ortiz Resists 'The San Francisco Indians,'" published in Wicazo Sa Review, Volume 29, Number 2, Fall 2014, pp. 5-24.

December, 2014: Dr. Jay Hansford C. Vest publishes new book, "Native American Oralcy: Interpretations of Indigenous Thought" (Vernon, BC: JCharlton Publishing, 2014). Native American Oralcy: Interpretations of Indigenous Thought is a work of criticism designed to challenge the misadventures of modernity in its divorce from the organic world. Engaging Native American / First Nations oral traditions as they embrace an paradigm of thought that engenders accord with nature, this study challenges the creeping ideological abstractions that ensue with the mind-over-matter mentality of the Western literary paradigm. It is an insight into the once and future wisdom essential to earth care.

2014: Dr. Stan Knick "Knowledge, Wisdom and the Traditional Mind: The Nottoway in the 21st Century" (director, producer, editor, videographer). An ethnographic video. Winner of the Best Regional Film at the 17th Annual Native American Film Festival of the Southeast.

2013: Dr. Stan Knick "Prostate Cancer in Indian Country: Lumbee Indian Men Speak Out" (videographer and editor; directed and produced with Ronny Bell). An ethnographic video.

2012: Dr. Stan Knick "Waccamaw Indian People of South Carolina" (videographer. editor; directed and produced with Michael Spivey). An ethnographic video.

November 3, 2012: Dr. Rose Stremlau’s book, Sustaining the Cherokee Family: Kinship and the Allotment of an Indigenous Nation, was awarded the Willie Lee Rose Book Prize from the Southern Association of Women Historians. This is for the best book on any topic in Southern history written by a woman and published during the previous calendar year. The award is named after Willie Lee Rose, a path-breaking female historian and professor at Johns Hopkins University who wrote about race and slavery in the South. The award was presented by Dr. Janann Sherman, professor and chair of the History Department at the University of Memphis.

Sustaining the Cherokee Family also was given an honorable mention by the committee deciding the Wheeler-Voegelin Prize, an award given each year by the American Society for Ethnohistory for the best book-length monograph published the previous year. The book also was a finalist (one of six) for the Great Plains Distinguished Book Prize, which is given each year by the Center for Great Plains Studies at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln to the best book on a topic related to the region published during the previous year.

2011: Dr. Stan Knick "Our People: The Coharie" (director, producer, editor; co-produced by George Johnson). An ethnographic video.

September 2, 2011: Assistant Professor Dr. Rose Stremlau publishes first book - “Sustaining the Cherokee Family: Kinship and Allotment of an Indigenous Nation." Dr. Stremlau’s book examines the Cherokee Nation in Oklahoma in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and its response to the government policy of “allotment.” The allotment program was the means by which the federal government divided Cherokee land among individual stakeholders, but for Dr. Stremlau it became a lens through which to view kinship and culture of the tribe throughout its history. View Press Release (from University Newswire).

May 19-21, 2011: Assistant Professor Dr. Jane Haladay organized and presented at the roundtable session, “Honoring the Vision of Jack D. Forbes: Assessing the Value of a Ph.D. in Native American Studies,” during the third annual meeting of The Native American and Indigenous Studies Association (NAISA). The conference took place on May 19-21 in Sacramento, Calif., and was hosted by the University of California at Davis’s Department of Native American Studies.

May 19-21, 2011: Chair and Assistant Professor Dr. Mary Ann Jacobs presented "Camp Days or Daze: Decolonization the Hard Way" during the third annual meeting of The Native American and Indigenous Studies Association (NAISA). The conference took place on May 19-21 in Sacramento, Calif., and was hosted by the University of California at Davis’s Department of Native American Studies.

May 15, 2011: Dr. Mary Ann Jacobs, Dr. Jane Haladay, Lawrence T. Locklear (University & Community Relations) and American Indian Studies’ alumni Anastasia Chavis ‘10 and Mardella Sunshine Costanzo ‘10 presented at the 36th annual North Carolina Indian Unity Conference held March 10-12 in Raleigh, N.C. Titled “‘Everything is Ceremony:’ Expanding Cultural Horizons through International University Collaboration,” the panel provided a brief overview of the institutional and administrative activities that led to an exchange program between UNCP and the University College of the North (UCN) in The Pas, Manitoba, Canada. The panel also focused on the transformative educational moments experienced by UNCP students and faculty at the six-day Moose Lake Cree culture camp in May 2010. Along with several hundred Cree and other Aboriginal people from across Canada, the panelists practiced a form of place-based, communally organized and culturally significant education that is the heart of traditional Indigenous education. The camp was the inaugural student event of an international exchange program established the previous fall (2009) between the American Indian Studies Department at UNCP and the Aboriginal and Northern Studies program at UCN.

April 15, 2011: Dr. Jesse Peters (English/AIS/Honors College) recently published a creative nonfiction piece in the current issue of BMW Motorcycle Owners News. The essay, entitled “Riding as Art,” examines the relationship between riding a motorcycle and exploring creativity. Dr. Peters has been riding BMW motorcycles for 10 years and often finds personal and professional inspiration while riding. “Riding a motorcycle connects one with the world in a particular way, and it provides me with a contemplative space that pushes creativity,” he says. “It's also a lot of fun.” The Owners News has a circulation of over 37,000 readers, and Peters has been asked to become a regular contributor. His first piece was published in the March issue of the magazine.

March 15, 2011: Dr. Jay H.C. Vest contributed a chapter titled “Dismantling Pedagogy: Representing Oralcy and Tradition in Native American Literature,” to the book “Exploring Fourth World Literatures: Tribals, Adivasis, Dalits,” edited by Raja Sekhar Patteti (New Delhi: Prestige Books, 2011, pages 34-51). According to Dr. Vest’s abstract: The chapter considers an oral-based paradigm common to Native American oral traditions and the residual orality found within much contemporary American Indian Literature. In so doing, the notion of oralcy is explored and defined as it contributes to what may be called the primal foundations to American Indian literature as derived from an original oral paradigm.

March 15, 2011: At the 4th Annual African-American Read-In at R.B Dean Elementary School in Maxton were Dr. Cherry Beasley (Nursing) and Dr. Mary Ann Jacobs. They obtained a grant from Unilever to provide students with health-conscious coloring books and nutritious snacks from the Pembroke McDonald’s restaurant. The grant emphasized the importance of health and good eating.

March 15, 2011: On March 17, Dr. Jane Haladay and Dr. Jesse Peters (Honors College/American Indian Studies) will present at the 12th annual Native American Literature Symposium to be held at Isleta Casino and Resort in Albuquerque, N.M. Their panel, “Crow and the Cultural Commons: Affiliation and Adjacent Possibility in Anishinaabe Literature,” will be the opening plenary session.

February 15, 2011: The wilderness has long been the subject of popular imagination, and a new book by American Indian Studies scholar Dr. Jay H.C. Vest reexamines this fascination. “Will-of-the-Land: A Philosophy of Wilderness Praxis and Environmental Ethics” (VDM Verlag, Dr. Muller; 2010; 342 pages) tracks Western civilization’s perception of “wilderness” from the Book of Genesis to the modern environmental movement. Wilderness is a particularly important American phenomenon. Because the land once belonged to Native Americans, Dr. Vest - who is a member of the Monacan Indian Nation and an adopted member of the Pikuni-Blackfeet Tribe - wraps the evolving concept of wilderness in a Native spiritual and philosophical context. The book reflects Dr. Vest’s lifelong relationship with the wilderness as an American Indian, a former employee of the US Forest Service and the US Bureau of Land Management (BLM), and a scholar.

2010: Dr. Stan Knick "Native Scholars: Native Reflections" (produced, edited and directed with Billie Hunt). An ethnographic video.

2009: Dr. Stan Knick "Our People: The Lumbee" (director, producer, editor; co-produced by George Johnson). An ethnographic video.

2009: Dr. Stan Knick "Listen to the Drum: A Closer Look at American Indian Powwow Music" (produced, edited and directed with Sunshine Costanzo and Becky Goins). An ethnographic video.


Students and Alumni

June 3-6, 2012: A delegation of students, faculty, staff and alumni participated in the annual meeting of the Native American and Indigenous Studies Association (NAISA) in early June in Uncasville, Conn. NAISA is an international, interdisciplinary professional organization for those who work in various scholarly fields related to Indigenous nations and people throughout the world. Several Lumbee scholars presented papers in what was the first panel devoted to Lumbee history and culture at a national conference. The panel, organized by historian Dr. Malinda Maynor Lowery of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, was titled"How to Subvert the Feds: A Swamp's Eye View of Indian Sovereignty."

Tasha Oxendine (GPAC), a UNCP graduate, presented a paper titled "Traditional Healing Practices among the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina" and showed a short film about traditional Lumbee healers, particularly fire blowers.

Jessica Clark, UNCP alumnae, gave a presentation titled "Southeastern Native Peoples Living in a Postmodern World," and shared her paintings and photographs of her family and the Lumbee homeland in her talk about using art to challenge stereotypes of her people.

Lawrence T. Locklear (University Communications & Marketing), a graduate and current student, in his paper “The Swamp Level-Sovereignty Paradigm: Reconceptualizing Oral Histories, Traditions and Cultural Practices as the Foundation for Swamp Level Expressions of Sovereignty,” discussed political and cultural expressions of sovereignty among the Lumbee people, defining sovereignty from the “swamp level.”

Dr. Mary Ann Jacobs (American Indian Studies) chaired the panel. Jacobs, Dr. Rose Stremlau (History/American Indian Studies) and Dr. Clyde Ellis of Elon University worked with Oxendine, Clark and Locklear in advance. Their work was well-received and praised by audience members. This may have been the first but it will not be the last panel on Lumbees at NAISA. In addition, other members of the UNCP community participated in a second panel. This one focused on the university’s collaborative relationship with University College of the North (UCN). Dr. Stremlau organized this panel, which included students, faculty, and staff from both schools who have been involved in this exchange. Dr. Jacobs and Dr. Jaime Mishibinijima (UCN) introduced the two universities and their unique history; UCN is an aboriginal-serving university in northern Manitoba.

Two students from UCN and two from UNCP discussed their role and experiences. Effie Locklear (Political Science) and Sherlene Chavis (Mathematics & Computer Science), a UNCP graduate, talked about the first joint class offered by UNCP and UCN, which was an upper-level course on the Canadian Indian residential and U.S. Indian boarding school experience. Locklear and Chavis took the course during the spring 2011 semester, and it is scheduled to be offered again during spring 2013. Doris Young, a Cree elder who advises UCN and the joint program, provided concluding remarks. Dr. Jacobs also chaired this panel.

June 15, 2011: Dr. Charles Harrington (Business) and Billie Hunt (Education) presented their paper, “American Indian Student Engagement in Higher Education,” at the 2011 Native American Student Advocacy Institute: The College Board at the University of Oklahoma, May 22-24. Hunt also presented a paper, “Native Culture Defines the Experiences of American Indian College Students,” at the same conference.

April 15, 2011: Lawrence T. Locklear (University & Community Relations) won first place in the short story category in the writing contest held during the N.C. Indian Unity Conference, held March 10-12 in Raleigh, N.C. His work is titled “Stitched with Stories.”

January 15, 2011: On November 29, Sherlene Chavis '11 was host of
WNCP-TV’s Distinguished Speaker Series program. The program is cablecast locally on Time Warner’s community access channel. An American Indian Studies major, Chavis was selected by the department to interview actor Adam Beach. The American Indian actor spent the day at UNCP, speaking in GPAC, meeting with students and doing the 30-minute television interview.

October 21, 2010: Native South published article by student Lawrence T. Locklear. “Down by the Ole Lumbee” was published in Native South (Vol. 3; 2010; pages. 103-117; University of Nebraska Press). In “Down by the Ole Lumbee: An Investigation into the Origin and Use of the Word Lumbee Prior to 1952,” Locklear used a variety sources to learn how a river’s name and a tribe’s name crossed paths. Should the river, known as the Lumber since 1809, be returned to its original name? The author believes so. The paper was originally presented at the Southeastern Indian Studies Conference in 2009. It may be viewed online at