Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy Program Overview

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Hul'qumi'num Treaty Group
A representative of the Hul'qumi'num Treaty Group, Professor Seanna Howard, and Professor Robert Williams Jr. testifying before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (left to right) *Photo courtesy of IACHR

A Community to Support You

University of Arizona Law students benefit from the mentorship and support of their fellow classmates. The University of Arizona Native American Law Students Association creates a welcoming and supportive environment for students and is one of the largest chapters in the country. The Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy (IPLP) Program also brings a global cohort of graduate students who are legal scholars and advocates from indigenous communities across the world.  

Unparalleled Experiential Learning Opportunities

The IPLP Program provides students with unparalleled clinical opportunities. We offer three year-round faulty-led clinics focused on working with tribes and indigenous communities across the world. Students get the opportunity to work closely with tribal leaders, institutions, and courts to promote justice in Indian country and work on a wide range of indigenous human rights advocacy projects in the United Nations and other international human rights bodies.

Leaders in Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy

Faculty at the Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy (IPLP) Program instill a strong understanding of the legal foundations of federal Indian law, tribal self-determination, and the trust responsibility, informed by developing norms of contemporary international law respecting indigenous peoples’ human rights. We equip students with the critical thinking skills and lawyering tools needed to develop innovative and effective legal strategies and policy initiatives to promote and advance the rights of indigenous communities across Indian Country and throughout the world.

The faculty at IPLP have extensive experience in a wide range of fields and roles including:

  • Federal Indian law
  • Indigenous peoples’ law, policy, and human rights
  • International and domestic environmental and natural resource law
  • Economic development within indigenous communities
  • Tribal governance and self-determination
  • Native Nation Building
  • Indigenous Entrepreneurship
  • Jurisdiction within Indian Country
  • Constitutions of Indigenous Nations
  • Critical race theory
  • Cultural property law
  • Indigenous Food Sovereignty
  • Intergovernmental Relations
  • Native Economic Development
  • Implementing the Violence Against Women Act within tribal communities
  • Serving as tribal court judges
  • Representing indigenous communities before the United States Supreme Court, domestic courts in Latin America, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, the United Nations Working Group on Indigenous Peoples, and the Supreme Court of Canada

IPLP’s Native Nation Building Impact

Professor Williams (Lumbee) reflects on IPLP’s impact and how the Native Nation Building legacy inspired by the late Vine Deloria, Jr. (Standing Rock Sioux Tribe) continues to animate the program.

 

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Professor Rob Williams
(Photo: Molly Condit/University of Arizona Law)

“The IPLP Program prepares our students to be leaders in their communities, in their fields of expertise, and in their practice as professionals. Our goal is to train the next generation of legal advocates promoting the rights of indigenous people here in the United States and around the world. By teaching an understanding of how prevailing norms and principles within federal Indian law, international human rights law, and tribal law and legal knowledge can be fused and integrated to advance recognition of indigenous peoples’ self-determination, IPLP students graduate with a wide range of theoretical knowledge, practical experience, and innovative strategies to affect change.”

Robert A. Williams, Jr., E. Thomas Sullivan Professor of Law; Faculty Co-Chair, Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy Program

IPLP Newsletter

The Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy (IPLP) Program’s monthly newsletter Notes from the Field highlights the research and advocacy work of IPLP alumni, students, and faculty. To get updates about our program subscribe to our monthly newsletter.

IPLP Newsletter

Huerta Scholars Program

The Huerta Scholarship was established in 2014 in honor of Judge Laurence Huerta to provide financial support and assistance to Native American law students at the University of Arizona College of Law (Arizona Law).

Huerta Scholars Program

Scholarships

The Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy (IPLP) Program’s commitment to supporting and teaching the next generation of legal advocates goes beyond the classroom. Each year IPLP provides more than $900,000 in scholarship awards and stipends to qualifying students.

IPLP Scholarships

University of Arizona Law Rankings

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Key Contact

Justin Boro
Assistant Director, Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy Program
Email: justinboro1986@email.arizona.edu (link sends e-mail)    
Office Number: RH 305
Office Phone: (520) 626-9224