COIN Statement on Place
Read Our full Statement on Place:
COIN Statement on Place*
Mni Sota Makoce, the original Dakota name for Minnesota, is the ancestral/contemporary homeland of the Dakota people. Just outside the windows of the COIN office is Wakpa Tanka (The Mississippi River), along which the Dakota have lived for many years. Wakpa Tanka is an important marker for many of us UMN-TC community members, as it creates the East and West Banks of the Twin Cities campus. Its convergence with Mnisota Wakpa (The Minnesota River) just downstream in Imnizaska Otunwe (St. Paul) is a sacred site of Dakota genesis and creation, called Bdote.
Here at COIN, we take seriously the historical/contemporary legacy of the UMN-TC, a land-grant institution that was endowed with stolen Dakota homelands through various forms of violence against the Dakota. We also consider the historical/ongoing legacy of the greater UMN system, which was created through the theft of Ojibwe and Dakota lands, as well as through Ojibwe, Dakota, and Ho-Chunk dispossession and removal out of Mni Sota Makoce, and the attempted extermination of their relations. We believe it is important to be cognizant of our being on and occupation of Indigenous homelands (Dakota homelands specifically at the UMN-TC), as well as our collective and individual responsibilities to the land and the original peoples of the lands we are on. We ground our office’s work in these responsibilities, and support for American Indian Tribal sovereignty, and global Indigenous sovereignty.
* This living statement of place was written by Gabriela Ines Diaz (CHamoru and Pohnpeian) for the COIN office in February 2023 (last updated July 2023) and is NOT a university/institutional land acknowledgement.