Meet Samantha Gove, a sophomore who is on her way at UConn while embracing the Native American heritage! She hopes to inspire other Native American students facing similar experiences by sharing her success at the University of Connecticut.
Chelsea Osei: Why did you choose your major or academic discipline?
Samantha Gove: I’m a sociology, human rights, and psychology sophomore. Originally when I started at UConn, I wanted to study both sociology and psychology. I wanted to understand social issues better, so I love to learn why things are so and how people interact and think. I also wanted to formally study human rights because activism is my great passion. I wanted to be better educated on human rights issues and to get more information on the best ways to improve the situation of groups that have been pushed to the limits of our society.
CO: As an Indigenous / Native American, did you have to overcome your academic difficulties while at UConn? If so, how did you overcome them?
SG: As a Native American, anything about being a native is a difficult academic challenge. In high school, I realized that the history taught in the classroom was not taught at home. The history of indigenous peoples and the situation and conflicts with whites were overlooked, especially when it comes to Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving was a way of celebrating the slaughter of my tribe, Machan Tucket Pequots, which was sad to me. It’s not that we didn’t celebrate Thanksgiving, but we celebrate it in another way. Our family and our community come together to inspire each other.
At university, I can’t say that I had many academic difficulties as a native. Some of my professors are surprised to be aware and aware of the history of indigenous peoples. They express it by expressing it accurately. They also keep in mind that there may be native students in the room and are sensitive to those subjects. I also found that when the professor dealt with it, it helped educate non-native students. Some professors speak as if there are no native students in the classroom, but that can be harmful.
CO: How did you join NAISA (Native American & Indigenous Student Association) and contribute to your academic success?
SG: I was looking for ways to connect with other indigenous and indigenous students on campus, so I was thrilled that UConn has a student association that is offered as a safe place for native students.Being a member of NAISA It has provided me with a wonderful and supportive community. That’s how I met NAISA President and Vice President and Student Coordinators Sage Phillips and Zoe Blevins. Native American Cultural Program (NACP). They encouraged me to apply for Native American Cultural Program positions and NAISA Executive Board positions. Participating in these organizations was great for my academic success, so I am grateful to have been selected for both positions. It’s great to have a safe space and a collaborative community on campus and people who understand the frustrations and hardships I may experience.
CO: How do clubs and activities help supplement your academic interests?
SG: My involvement in NAISA and NACP spends most of my time as I have grown since I was first involved. Through NACP, we run cultural education exchanges between NAISA and the UConn Indigenous Peoples Cultural Education Exchange (UCINCEE). This is a mentorship program for tribal youth. I also represent the Vice President of Student Affairs of the Student Leadership Council. It is a group of about 20 student leaders and some staff who participate in conversations for significant changes on campus surrounding many topics and issues. I also have experience in movie watching clubs. But although I’m no longer a member, it was very interesting to watch the movies we chose and talked about. I am also a member of the Human Rights and Behavioral Learning Community and have had a great experience connecting with other students who are as passionate about me as I am.
CO: What kind of career are you interested in in the future? How is it tied to your identity / how is it related to your current interests?
SG: I don’t know what I want to do in the future. I’m in second grade, so I’m thinking about what I want to do within a few years. All I really knew was that I was passionate about my activities, from middle school to high school. I have worked for various nonprofits and community-based organizations. I love the idea that I can help people. By advocating positive change in society, by institutions that can adversely affect a particular group of people, or by going out to educate people about social issues and become an active member of the community. By that. I am strongly thinking of continuing to study in law and graduate school and honing my skills. I always want to keep my background in mind. My tribal community is important to me, so I’m always thinking about how I can apply what I’ve learned to help my community.
CO: Who supported your success?
SG: I have a very nice network of support. My parents say they are the best, so I need to mention them first. From high school to the present, they have supported my academic success throughout my life. They helped me proofread my college essays and scholarship applications and provided emotional support. As mentioned earlier, everyone working together at UConn’s Native American Cultural Program has incredibly supported me and everything I’m involved with. Award project spring semester. We also receive a lot of support from our friends and people in the National Human Rights Learning Community. Whenever I need advice on how to do what I want to do, there are people who go first. Given my busy schedule, I couldn’t do everything I was doing on campus without support.
CO: What is one of the advices you give to the next grader?
SG: I encourage students to attend. I think the participation fair and UConntact were great resources I used. It’s a great way to meet new people and emphasize your passion. If you have a learning community that suits your interests, we encourage you to sign up for it. Learning the community is a great way to meet not only faculty and staff who can help you on your journey, but also students who share the same interests. It is important to be open when joining a club or organization. Even if they don’t look like they’re together, you’ll be amazed at the many ways you can apply your casual interests to academic and professional interests. I didn’t expect the opportunity to publish an analysis of the film from a sociological point of view or work on a minority language project with Brendan Kane. Participation also helps to build a network and provide a place to focus on things other than scholars. upon.
Samantha Gove – UConn Center for Career Development
https://career.uconn.edu/blog/2022/05/25/student-spotlight-samantha-gove/ Samantha Gove – UConn Center for Career Development