Bonnie Brown, instructor and Native American studies program coordinator, has been named the 2017 Eberly Outstanding Public Service Award recipient.
“As part of a land-grant institution, our faculty are routinely engaged in meaningful engagement with our communities,” said Gregory Dunaway, dean for the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences. “Bonnie heartily embodies a spirit of service and the Eberly College is proud to have her in our ranks."
Brown uses her role as program coordinator to engage with members of the University, local and regional community through events and activities that promote communication and cultural exchanges between Native and non-Native people.
“Far too many misconceptions, negative stereotypes and conscious or unconscious biases seem to prevail when it comes to non-Natives’ public knowledge of American Indians and Alaska Natives,” Brown said.
Through her programs, she strives to break down these misconceptions and stereotypes by connecting people with each other to bridge understanding and respect.
Brown has invited some of the most important Native elders and leaders in the country to campus, developed off-campus learning courses for students and coordinated events such as the annual Peace Tree Ceremony.
“Service should be at the heart of all educational endeavors,” Brown said. “Especially within a non-profit, land-grant institution such as ours.”