Every class at MVU incorporated indigenous themes into their lessons in various ways on October 9th in observance of Indigenous Peoples' Day. One of the most notable events were presentations from Jesse Laroque on how baskets have been traditionally made by the Abenaki in this region for hundreds of years.
Black ash trees thrive in swampy environments, making the wood too wet to be suitable for fires, but perfect for bending into crafts. After demonstrating how pounding an ash log with a hammer separates the rings of the wood, Larocque pulled and cut strips that could then be soaked and finally woven into baskets of all shapes and sizes. Students passed around examples of handmade baskets and were given the opportunity to think about how indigenous cultures continue to resonate throughout the world today.