UAA Campus is Open

We are pleased to report the UAA Anchorage campus will open on Wednesday, Dec. 5, following last Friday's earthquake. The Chugiak-Eagle River Campus will remain closed, but classes will resume in alternative locations. Students should check UAOnline for their new meeting location. As you return to campus, we encourage you to check the web page for important safety tips and resources about how to submit work requests to facilities for repairs. Please continue to check our Facebook and Twitter accounts for updates.


Beth Leonard

AKNS Director and Associate Professor
Alaska Native Studies
SSB 376
(907) 786-6140


I am Deg Xit’an Athabascan and member of the Shageluk Tribe of interior Alaska. My father is James Dementi, who was raised in a traditional subsistence lifestyle. My mother is the late Reverend Jean Dementi, originally from California. 

My research interests include Indigenous Knowledge systems and methodologies, Dena/Athabascan oral traditions and languages, Indigenous higher education, and Alaska Native teacher preparation. From 2008-12 I served as PI of the Alaska Native Teacher Preparation Project and am currently co-PI of a National Science Foundation funded project “Factors Related to Teacher Retention in Arctic Alaska, an Integral Part of the Circumpolar North.”   

In 2014 I was based at Victoria University of Wellington (VUW), Te Kawa a Māui-School of Māori Studies on a Fulbright US Core Teaching/Research Scholarship. I co-instructed a joint UAF/VUW videoconference course “Indigenous Knowledge[s] and Science” with my faculty host, Ocean Mercier and conducted collaborative, participatory research on the development and enhancement of Māori and Indigenous spaces at VUW.

Follow this link to see Beth's Curriculum Vitae in full. 


Leonard, B. & Mercier, O. (2014). Shaping Indigenous spaces in higher education: An international, virtual exchange on Indigenous knowledge (Alaska and Aotearoa). Canadian Journal of Native Education. 37(1), 218-238.

Leonard, B., Breinig, J., Carpluk, L., Lind, S., & Williams, M. (Eds.). (2014). Transforming the university: Alaska Native studies in the 21st century. Minneapolis, MN: Two Harbors Press.

Leonard, B. (2014). Why do we need an Alaska Native studies council? In B. Leonard, J. Breinig, L. Carpluk, S. Lind & M. Williams (Eds.) Transforming the University: Alaska Native Studies in the 21st Century – Alaska Native Studies Conference Proceedings 2013 (Anchorage, AK). Minneapolis, MN: Mill City Press. 

Leonard, B. (2013). Indigenous pedagogies in the oral traditions of Belle Deacon. Journal of American Indian Education, 52(3), 3-20.

Brayboy, B., Gough, H., Leonard, B. et. al. (2011). Reclaiming scholarship: Critical Indigenous research methodologies. In S. Lapan et. al (eds.) Qualitative Research (pp. 423-450). San Francisco, CA: Jossey Bass.

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