Spring 2021 Diversity Speaker Series

Center for the Study of Higher Education alumna Dr. Amanda Tachine

The College of Education’s Diversity Committee is excited to announce the Spring 2021 Diversity Speaker Series. The series is kicking off with Center for the Study of Higher Education alumna Dr. Amanda Tachine.

Dr. Amanda R. Tachine is Navajo from Ganado, Arizona. She is Náneesht’ézhí Táchii’nii (Zuni Red Running into Water clan) born for Tl’izilani (Many Goats clan). She is an assistant professor in educational leadership and innovation at Arizona State University. Tachine’s research centers on exploring college access and persistence among Indigenous college students using qualitative Indigenous methodologies. She is drawn to contribute to research that focuses on systemic and structural barriers that disenfranchise college access for Indigenous and marginalized populations. Her dissertation, titled Monsters and Weapons: Navajo students’ stories on their journeys to college, was awarded the 2016 American Educational Research Association Division J Dissertation of the Year. In 2017 she was awarded the Spencer Postdoctoral Fellowship. She has been published in the Journal of Higher Education, Qualitative Inquiry, International Review of Qualitative Research, and other scholarly outlets.

Tachine was recognized by President Obama with the White House Champions of Change: Young Women Empowering Communities award for creating Native SOAR, a multi-generation mentoring program to increase college access among Native youth and families. She has also published thought pieces in the Huffington Post, Al Jazeera, The Hill, Teen Vogue, Indian Country Today, Inside Higher Ed, and Navajo Times where she advances ideas regarding discriminatory actions, educational policies, and inspirational movements.


Abstract: Systemic monsters, hauntings, and ghosts linger in the lives of Navajo college students. These systemic monsters and their hauntings are often normalized by a society that ignores the inequities in higher education by maintaining the status quo of Native people in the United States. Yet, Navajo students activate regenerative “Indigenous weapons” rooted in Navajo ways of knowing that sustain their survivance and reawaken power and the sovereignty of Indigenous presence and belonging in college settings and society.



3 p.m. to 4 p.m. Feb. 23, 2021