Aldo D. Aragon

"The Hoover Project On Renewing Indigenous Economies "

I first became acquainted with the Institution and with the Project in August of 2023, when I participated in their Indigenous Students Seminar. That program aims to help Indigenous college students and graduates from the U.S., Canada, Australia, and Aotearoa (New Zealand) think critically about the relationship between federal Indian policy and self-determination.

On the basis of my performance in that student seminar and given my work on related issues within the Harvard History Department, [see:] I was invited to more formally work with Hoover on the project, beginning with a November workshop alongside other scholars interested in American-Indian issues.

Papers up for November workshopping included the writings of a University of Chicago Law professor, political scientists in California, historians at the University of Oklahoma, and other tenure/tenure-track affiliates.

I was excited to attend this November workshop and to catch up with so many mentors, colleagues, and friends at the Hoover Institution.

I have been invited to return to the Institution again in August of 2024 as an alumni speaker at next year's Indigenous Students Seminar and look forward to further engagement with fellow scholars on the very pressing issue of American-Indian affairs. I'm excited to deliver some prepared remarks to the 2024 cohort and work with students during group discussions.

November 2023 - Searle Academic Workshop
August 2023 - Indigenous Students Seminar
August 2023 - Native Lands in the Southwestern U.S.

Following my first year of participation with the Hoover Institution's Indigenous Students Seminar, I spent a week driving a pick-up truck by myself from San Diego to Denver in August 2023 as part of my Harvard senior year move-in. To better understand the issues facing Native American communities on the U.S. mainland (particularly within the Southwest) as discussed by the Hoover Institution's Indigenous Students Seminar, I spent much of that itinerary within the Navajo Nation; the Hopi Reservation; and the Jicarilla Apache Nation.

Window Rock, the Capital of the Navajo Nation
Navajo-language signage on a rez grocery store
Overlooking the Hopi Reservation from Songoopavi village
On the border of the Jicrilla Apache Nation, near Dulce, NM
April 2023 - United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues

In April 2023, I attended UNPFII as part of a Harvard delegation of Indigenous scholars. This was my first year of attendance, so I primarily focused on actively listening to others and took a backseat relative to some more experienced delegates.

My view of the General Assembly Hall, in the Turtle Bay neighborhood of my hometown on Manahatta island. The working languages were English and Spanish, of which I am both fluent in.