Assistant Professor (Tenure-Track) – Native American Studies

The property

Position Overview

We welcome applicants who wish to join an active and growing department. The Department of Native American Studies at Montana State University is the only Native American Studies/Indigenous Studies program in a mainstream institution accredited by the World’s Indigenous Nations Higher Education Consortium (WINHEC). Unique among campus departments, NAS also includes the American Indian/Alaska Native Student Success Services, a welcoming space of belonging and cultural programming for Native students from all across campus and the community. The successful candidate will teach courses in the candidate’s area of expertise and help mentor students in the NAS Master’s program, one of only a handful of such programs in higher education. The position offers an opportunity to research and publish in topics of interest in Native American Studies and allied disciplines.
Faculty Tenure Track
Faculty Rank
Assistant Professor
Position Number
Native American Studies
College of Letters & Science
Appointment Type
Contract Term
Academic Year
Union Affiliation
Exempt from Collective Bargaining
Benefits Eligibility
Salary commensurate with experience, education, and qualifications.
Contract Type
Recruitment Type

Position Details

General Statement
The successful candidate will be a researcher and teacher who will help the Native American Studies Department continue to provide outstanding scholarship, teaching, and service, especially as we seek to develop new, culturally responsive and relevant degree options (BA/BS, MS, PhD) to better serve Native students and communities in this region.
Montana State University values diverse perspectives and is committed to continually supporting, promoting, and building an inclusive and culturally diverse campus environment. The College of Letters & Science (CLS) at Montana State University encourages individuals to apply who are interested in advancing the University’s Strategic Plan diversity, equity, and inclusion goals." . Links to the University Strategic Plan; Office of Diversity and Inclusion; Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) Plan; CLS Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion; and CLS newsletter, Diversity Matters are all embedded here for reference. CLS is committed to developing a diverse faculty, staff, and student body and to modeling an inclusive campus community that values the expression of differences in ways that promote excellence in research, teaching, service/outreach engagement, and institutional success. In keeping with this commitment, the College encourages applications from candidates with diverse backgrounds. We recruit, employ, train, and promote regardless of race, gender, sex, religion, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, color, national origin, disability, age, veteran status, and other underrepresented groups. MSU also recognizes the importance of work-life integration and strives to be responsive to the needs of dual career couples.

Duties and Responsibilities

Duties include
  • Advising and mentoring Native American Studies graduate students
  • Teaching courses in the candidate’s areas of expertise
  • Aiding the department in the development of new degree programs (undergraduate and doctoral)
  • Supporting and advancing the Department’s WINHEC accreditation and assessment activities
  • Maintaining a strong program of research and publication
Required Qualifications – Experience, Education, Knowledge & Skills
  1. Terminal degree by Aug. 17, 2023.
  2. Documented research program in an area relevant to Native American Studies and Native communities.
  3. In particular, we seek someone with the ability to:
  • Negotiate Indigenous and Western science(s) in ways that privilege the former while utilizing the latter where it makes sense to do so in Indigenous-led research, education, and capacity building
  • Teach Tribal and/or Federal Indian law and policy in the context of Indigenous economic development
  • Teach and engage in Indigenous research methodologies, Native spirituality and/or philosophies, and issues of language revitalization
  • Work collaboratively and in good faith with the existing team of dedicated staff, students and faculty to grow the Department’s capacity to prepare our students for the challenges they face in their home communities and the world at large
Preferred Qualifications – Experience, Education, Knowledge & Skills
  1. Demonstrated record of or potential for excellence in teaching.
  2. Demonstrated record of or potential for excellence in research.
  3. Demonstrated knowledge of contemporary issues affecting Native communities, and protocol for engaging ethically with Native communities.
  4. Evidence of community-based research with commitment, and service to one or more Native communities.
  5. Evidence of ability to instruct and engage in research from an Indigenous perspective.
  6. Indigenous language speaker and traditional knowledge holder.

The Successful Candidate Will

The successful candidate will be a researcher and teacher who will help the Native American Studies Department continue to provide outstanding scholarship, teaching and service. The successful candidate will have a “we” attitude and collaborative nature, allowing them to engage creatively with students, staff and faculty in the development of new and year-round cultural and academic programming in support of the Department’s ongoing decolonizing and indigenizing efforts.

Position Special Requirements/Additional Information

This job description should not be construed as an exhaustive statement of duties, responsibilities or requirements, but a general description of the job. Nothing contained herein restricts Montana State University’s rights to assign or reassign duties and responsibilities to this job at any time.

Physical Demands

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily with or without reasonable accommodations. The requirements listed above are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required.

The Program

The Department of Native American Studies currently confers a non-teaching minor in Native American Studies (NAS), a Master of Arts program, and a graduate certificate program. There are opportunities to engage with approximately 800 Native students representing 40 tribes on campus. There are seven reservations in Montana and the state is home to 12 tribal Nations. The program has historically drawn students from international communities and has a solid reputation in Indigenous higher education.

The Department

The Department of Native American Studies is in the College of Letters and Science. It is the only Indigenous Studies/Native American Studies program in a mainstream institution accredited by the World Indigenous Nations Higher Education Consortium (WINHEC). The Katz Family Endowed Chair in Native American Studies is one of only three such chairs in the United States. The department also supports two collaborative, Indigenous-led research and educational programs: the Native Land Project and the Buffalo Nations Food Systems Initiative, both of which provide opportunities to be involved in existing active research programs. The Department also has the capacity to host short-term Elder(s)-in-Residence, and is currently seeking funding to purchase accommodations with the goal of hosting EIR’s for a full semester or academic year.
The Department offers a non-teaching undergraduate minor in Native American Studies (NAS), a graduate certificate in NAS and a Master of Arts in NAS. A new graduate certificate in Indigenous Food Systems has been approved and a new suite of courses to support it are under development. Courses in Native American Studies are an integral part of the Diversity Category in the University Core requirements. The teaching load may include undergraduate and graduate courses.
The Department of Native American Studies is housed in American Indian Hall, a 32,000 square foot state-of-the-art office and classroom building opened in January of 2022. American Indian Hall also houses the Office of American Indian and Alaska Native Student Success Services, a program under NAS.
Faculty and staff in Native American Studies acknowledge and practice the Departmental core values of Honesty, Generosity, Kindness, Openness, Hard Work, Family, Humility, Spirituality, Humor and Respect. We are guided by a Native Student Wellness Model developed collaboratively with our students, staff and faculty as part of the department’s ongoing and successful work to maintain accreditation with the World Indigenous Nations Higher Education Consortium (WINHEC).

The College

The College of Letters and Science, the largest center for learning, teaching and research at Montana State University, offers students an excellent liberal arts and sciences education in nearly 50 majors, 25 minors and over 25 graduate degrees within the four areas of the humanities, natural sciences, mathematics and social sciences.
Building on the great strength of our traditional disciplines, the College provides exciting opportunities for faculty and students at the cutting edge of interdisciplinary inquiry.

Posting Detail Information

Number of Vacancies
Desired Start Date
Upon completion of a successful search
Position End Date
(if temporary)
Applications will be: Screening of applications will begin on April 30, 2023; however, applications will continue to be accepted until an adequate applicant pool has been established.
Special Instructions Please submit a CV, a cover letter addressing each required and preferred qualification, and a portfolio that includes a teaching statement and a writing sample.

Diversity Statement

Montana State University values diverse perspectives and is committed to continually supporting, promoting and building an inclusive and culturally diverse campus environment. MSU recognizes the importance of work-life integration and strives to be responsive to the needs of dual-career couples.
Montana State University is committed to providing a working and learning environment free from discrimination. As such, the University does not discriminate in the admission, access to or conduct of its educational programs and activities nor in its employment policies and practices on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, ethnicity, creed, service in the uniformed services (as defined in state and federal law), veteran status, gender, age, political beliefs, marital or family status, pregnancy, physical or mental disability, genetic information, gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation or preference. In support of the University’s mission to be inclusive and diverse, applications from qualified minorities, women, veterans and persons with disabilities are highly encouraged.
Montana State University makes accommodation for any known disability that may interfere with an applicant’s ability to compete in the hiring process or an employee’s ability to perform the duties of the job. To request an accommodation, contact the Human Resources Office, PO Box 172520, Montana State University, Bozeman MT 59717-2520; 406-994-3651;
In compliance with the Montana Veteran’s Employment Preference Act, MSU provides preference in employment to veterans, disabled veterans, and certain eligible relatives of veterans. To claim veteran’s preference please complete the veteran’s preference information located in the Demographics section of your profile.
MSU’s Non-Discrimination Policy and Discrimination Grievance Procedures can be located on the MSU Website:
FLSA Status Exempt

Required Documents

  1. Cover Letter
  2. Curriculum Vitae
  3. Portfolio - Research, Professional Practices &/or Teaching (max 20 pages)


Write a Review

Listing Location

Bozeman, MT, USA

The NAISA logo was designed by Jonathan Thunder, a Red Lake Ojibwe painter and digital artist from Minnesota. NAISA members inspired by canoe traditions among their own people sent examples to Thunder, who designed the logo with advice from the NAISA Council. The color scheme was chosen to signify those Indigenous peoples who are more land-based and do not have canoe traditions.