Photo and Caption 

For Immediate Release 
 Eric Davis, Marketing & Communications Director
          505.424.2351, or


 Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA)  

2020 Graduation Ceremony
93 Degrees and Certificates Conferred on August 12, 2020


SANTA FE, NM: August 25, 2020 

The Institute of American Indian Arts held their 2020 commencement ceremony at 11:00 am on Saturday, August 22, 2020. The event was held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

IAIA President Dr. Robert Martin (Cherokee) conferred 93 degrees on the graduating students, including undergraduate speakers Nancy Beauregard, Lydia Clark, and Jessica Cordes. 
Vivian Carroll (Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma) spoke for the MFA Students.

Joy Harjo: photo by Eric Davis, courtesy of IAIA

Commencement speaker, IAIA Alumna and two-term United States Poet Laureate Joy Harjo (Mvskoke Nation) '68, provided stories from her time as one of the first group of students to attend IAIA and words of encouragement for the online viewers and graduating students. Additionally, she was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Humanities.

Dr. Robert Martin: photo by Eric Davis, courtesy of IAIA

Offering undergraduate degrees in Studio Arts, Creative Writing, Cinematic Arts and Technology, Indigenous Liberal Studies,  Performing Arts, and Museum Studies -- an MFA in Creative Writing -- along with certificates in Business and Entrepreneurship, Museum Studies, and Native American Art History -- IAIA is the only college in the nation dedicated to the study of contemporary Native arts. The school serve approximately 500 full time equivalent (FTE) Native and non-Native American college students from across the globe.  IAIA is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. 

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About IAIA -- For over 50 years, the Institute of American Indian Arts has played a key role in the direction and shape of Native expression. With an internationally acclaimed college, museum, and tribal support resource through the IAIA Land-Grant Programs, IAIA is dedicated to the study and advancement of Native arts and cultures -- and committed to student achievement and the preservation and progress of their communities.  Learn more about IAIA and our mission at


The Institute of American Indian Arts Foundation is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization.  To make a donation on-line, please click here -- or call toll free: 1.800.804.6423.