November 2018 Graduate

Mitchell Rose Bear Don’t Walk

Mitchell Rose Bear Don’t WalkHome town: Saint Ignatius, MT
Tribe: Confederated Salish Kootenai Tribes, Crow Nation, Lone Pine Shoshone Paiute
Scholarship: Science Post Graduate Scholarship Fund
School: University of Montana
Field: Environmental Studies
GPA: 3.9

I am a budding young botanist, aspiring indigenous chef, and Jiu jitsu practitioner. Graduating from Yale University in 2016 with a BA in Political Science, I went on to teach my native Salish language at St. Ignatius high school on the Flathead Indian Reservation. I am currently a Master of Science candidate at the University of Montana graduate school in the environmental studies department. My research is centered on working with the Salish people in areas of traditional food plants and medicines to revitalize traditional plant knowledge. Through ethnobotany and field work I wish to reconnect and understand the deep relationship Salish people have cultivated with plants. I hope to create a culturally-comprehensive food plant guide by and for Salish people that includes botanical but also linguistic, historic, and culturally relevant information. I conduct this research as a Native Science Fellow under the HOPA Mountain National Science Foundation and serve as a Community Consultant for a First Nations Development grant on the Flathead Indian Reservation. When I am not in school I enjoy managing my hometowns first farmers market, lifting weights, foraging, cooking, fancy-dancing and training Brazilian Jiu jitsu. I coach at my home academy and am a certified blue belt. My overall approach is to raise awareness about traditional plant knowledge as well as increase community wellness through food sovereignty initiatives and cultural activities on the reservation and in the surrounding areas.