Campus Theme Events

Joseph Erb


Signature Events

Join us for campus events throughout the academic year that highlight Cherokee connections to the region and the university.

Return from Exile: Contemporary Southeastern Indian Art
August 21 – December 8, 2017
The exhibition features more than thirty contemporary Southeastern Native American artists working in a variety of media including painting, drawing, printmaking, basketry, sculpture, and pottery.  Return from Exile is one of the first major exhibitions to focus on contemporary artists from tribal nations with a historical connection to the Southeastern United States.  These include the so-called Five Civilized Tribes, the Choctaw, Chickasaw, Cherokee, and Muscogee (or Creek), and Seminole, all of whom were forcibly removed in the 1830s to present-day Oklahoma as a result of the Indian Removal Act of 1830.  The symposium, reception and keynote performance will be held on November 10, 2017.

Rooted in the Mountains
September 28-29, 2017
Rooted in the Mountains: Valuing our Common Ground emphasizes the connection between local and traditional knowledge with health and environmental issues.  This is an interdisciplinary forum where enthnography, literature, art, music, Native and Western science converge. Our theme for this year's conference is "duyuk' dv' I" which translates to "The Correct Way".

Tribe Called Red
November 10, 2017 at 7:30pm
Broad range of musical influences based in modern hip-hop, traditional pow wow drums and vocals, blended with edgy electronic music production styles.  A Tribe Called Red promotes inclusivity, empathy and acceptance amongst all races and genders in the name of social justice.  They believe that indigenous people need to define their identity on their own terms.  A Tribe Called Red is part of the Return from Exile symposium exploring Native American art and culture.  

Cherokee Language Symposium
Spring 2018
The symposium brings together students and instructors of Cherokee language from several institutions. Campus events will include a keynote speaker presentation, presentations from Cherokee Studies faculty, and workshops about second language acquisition pedagogy as well as the practical applications of technology for language revitalization. 

Cultural Immersion Excursion
Spring 2018
The cultural immersion trip exposes students to persons/groups markedly different in culture from that of themselves and creates awareness for the world around them.

Cherokee Tour
Spring 2018
This free “tour” hosts interactive learning stations highlighting aspects of Cherokee recreation and tourism, creative arts, environment, health, innovation and technology, social change and creative arts. 

New Kituwah Powwow
April 4, 2018
The New Kituwah Academy Language Immersion School in Cherokee, NC will host their annual youth powwow at WCU.  The powwow will consist of traditional songs, dances and stories performed by the academy faculty, staff, students and their families.

Mountain Heritage Day
September 30, 2017 | 10:00am – 5:00pm
The 43rd annual Mountain Heritage Day will be a combination old-fashioned mountain fair and showcase for Southern Appalachian music, arts, dance and song, with the atmosphere of a big family reunion. Visitors will find three stages of traditional old-time, gospel, and bluegrass music and dance, with plenty of fiddles, banjos, and clogging. Festival-goers are invited to join in workshops at the Circle Tent and participate in shape-note singing, one of the mountains’ sacred traditions. Admission and parking are free so bring your family and experience all that our rich heritage has to offer.

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