Indigenous Leadership Semester

Our neighborhood on Glasheen Road.

Indigenous Leadership Semester

Study and advancement of indigenous people of the northeast

Native knowledge and worldview

Preservation of Indigenous Culture and Teachings

Native American Landscapes and community Settlements

Indigenous agriculture and food sovereignty

Indigenous rights and social justice initiatives

Activism for Indigenous Peoples Resilient and Sustainable lifestyles


In response to historical land dispossession and social disenfranchisement, First Nation Peoples have been attempting to bring forth new and realistic endeavors to correct centuries-old conditions. With the present challenges facing humanity and all life on earth, from climate disruption to social inequities, to food insecurity and cultural fragmentation, it is essential that new and creative initiatives that more thoroughly sustain and regenerate within the earth’s living systems, and cultural, social, and ecological ways and means. Isolated from the cycles and insights of nature’s ways, humans are experiencing an entrenched separation from the natural world, as well as from the human family, resulting in an unsustainable culture of consumption and separation. Separation from traditional and ancient ways is central to our society’s present situation.

To correct this situation, it is vital that humanity evolve by returning to and learning from the ancient wisdom and practices of the First Nation Peoples of the Northeast region of Turtle Island, which allowe d all species to live connected and harmonious lives for over 8,000 years. The first step to assuring that such vital teachings persist for both Native and Non-Native people is to provide study and experience of the land and cultural history, wisdom teachings, and Indigenous Peoples Rights. Such programs of education, engagement programs and services, and place-based community initiatives will start to return the lost and fragmented culture of the origianal people of this land.

To this end, the University of the Wild and its alternative higher education curriculum of self-directed learning through classes, mentorship, and direct experience has joined with Greenfield Community College, Greenfield, MA and local Indigenous groups and organizations to sponsor the semester-long certificate program in Indigenous Leadership Program (ILP)

The Indigenous Leadership Program program will take place at selected sites throughout central New England and at the newly created Nipmuc Cultural & Education Center on original Indigenous land within the Quabbin/Nichewaug Bioregion of Petersham, MA. The program of study will take place within the deep historical, ecologically significant, and beautiful landscapes of central New England which make it an ideal location for welcoming Indigenous Peoples back to their original lands in order to preserve and promulgate local native culture, both historically and as a living system based on longstanding Indigenous ancestral traditions and values and present day Native American rights.

Course of Study

The Indigenous Leadership Program Core Curriculum. The sixteen (16) week semester-long pilot study program includes wisdom teachings from Indigenous Traditions and “State-of-the-Art” research and practice in the art and science of sustainable/regenerative living. Enrolled students will gain competency in a core curriculum that gives them the philosophy, content, and methods of basic Indigenous culture, both past and present. Six (6) “hands-on” academic courses will be instructed to enhance community-building, personal development, and education.

The skills and abilities atributed to Indigenous wisdom and culture for global ecological citizenship is well documented and is being implemented in a range of settings worldwide.  To override the fragmented and separated cosmology of the modern education systems and to assure personal and cultural integration of ecological and socially appropraite skills and abilities the program curriculum will foucus on six (6) separate, but overlapping three-credit courses

The Core Curriculum includes 18 Academic Credits

ILP 101 Introduction to Indigenous Studies………………………………3 Credits ILP102 Indigenous Wisdon & Sacred Teachings……………………….3 Credits ILP 103 Ecology and Protection of Indigenous Landscapes………..3 Credits ILP 104 Indigenous Agriculture & Food Sovereignty…………………3 Credits ILP 105 Native American Rights & Modern Activism……………….3 Credits ILP 106 Self-directed Project in Indigenous Studies………………….3 Credits Total Academic Credits…………………18 Credits.

We need every available creative resource to stop humanity from hurtling towards the destruction of the planet we know and love. No doubt the planet would survive,

   “…to transfer the University of the Wild in Petersham to a ‘state-of-the-art’

Contributing to Earth’s Future

As humanity becomes more fearful and disempowered by the impact of environmental crises and social ills associated with how modern life

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