The annual Native American Film and Lecture Series kicked off on Tuesday, April 3. The event was held in Room TB 203, which is an auditorium on the Taylorsville Redwood Campus. This year’s event included a speaker and two Native American films. The event was co-sponsored by AISL, (American Indian Student Leadership), ACE and Multicultural and Diversity Programming.
“I do believe the event is important because it brings to light awareness of native issues like stereotyping, health care, native rights, plus treaties that the government has never lived up to,” said Simone Jackson, AISL club treasurer. “As a Native American it gets tiresome to see things like this. We don’t want our kids to see stereotyping and don’t want them to see native stereotypes that will confuse them about their cultures. Culture is important.”
The event this year spanned three days from April 3 to April 5. To begin the event, filmmaker Travis Hamilton spoke about the two movies that were shown, which he made. Hamilton lived on a reservation as a missionary, which inspired his filmmaking. He has made four movies.
On the second day of the event, “Turquoise Rose” was shown. It is a film that depicts the internal struggles of a young urban Native American woman when she is called back to the reservation to take care of her elderly grandmother.
The third day, “Pete & Cleo” was shown. The story is about two brothers who reconnect and pester one another about the directions they’ve each chosen in life. Cleo is on spring break from college while Pete stayed at home. Not one afternoon passes before the two are at odds over their differing values and views of the world.
“I love Native American movies. I love that our native culture can be known throughout the world and how our lifestyle is portrayed in the movies,” said Jennifer Billie, vice president of AISL.
Also from 1 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, Linda Myers from the Adopt-a-Native-Elder Program was there to collect food donations for the program. This is a program that collects food and then delivers it to elderly people on Navajo Reservations who are unable to get to the grocery store.
The Native American Film and Lecture Series represents the AIS club and Native American students at Salt Lake Community College. Its purpose is to introduce the native culture. At this time there are only a total of eight active members of AISL.