Indigenous internationalization: Indigenous worldviews, higher education, and Tribal Colleges and Universities

Elizabeth Alva Sumida Huaman, Belinda Chiu, Carrie Billy


This article examines the role of Indigenous knowledges in higher education through an exploration of internationalization at U.S. Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs). We affirm that examining internationalization efforts with historically marginalized and underserved populations provides an opportunity for interrogating inequitable power dynamics in knowledge construction, production, and transference vis-à-vis education and within a Western hegemonic model of modernity. Our discussion is anchored in decoloniality and Indigenous sustainable self-determination, which highlight educational initiatives that bolster Indigenous identities while addressing social, political, and environmental complications created by coloniality. Drawing from a five-year mixed-methods case study with TCUs, we offer Indigenous perspectives on place-based higher educational initiatives in relation to local and global concerns, specifically human and ecological sustainability. We propose a critical lens in Indigenous internationalization wherein Indigenous worldviews are vital responses to dominant notions of internationalization and historical limitations of education for Indigenous peoples.


Tribal colleges; internationalization; Indigenous knowledges

Full Text:



Article Metrics

Metrics Loading ...

Metrics powered by PLOS ALM

Copyright (c) 2019 Elizabeth Alva Sumida Huaman, Belinda Chiu, Carrie Billy

Contact EPAA//AAPE at Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College