October 4, 2023, KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. – Oregon Tech is proud to announce that Environmental Sciences senior Tanikwah Lang has been chosen to attend and participate in the United Nations (UN) Global Indigenous Youth Forum in Rome, Italy, this month.

Lang is a member of the Klamath Tribes and was raised in the Klamath Basin.

The United Nations Global Indigenous Youth Forum is an annual event that brings together Indigenous Youth and countries, UN agencies, universities, research centers, and other stakeholders to discuss critical issues related to food security, sustainable agriculture, and the preservation of indigenous cultures and traditions. Hosted at the Food and Agriculture Organization headquarters in Rome, this forum provides a platform for young leaders like Lang to engage in meaningful dialogue and collaborate in drafting solutions to global challenges.

The conservation opportunity is not new to Lang, who participated in The Wildlife Society Native American Research Assistantship Program this past summer. During the nationally competitive internship, Lang was part of a study of Bison Grazing and Grassland Birds: Evaluating Prairie Restoration on Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie.

“The study was in Wilmington, Illinois, on the Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie,” Lang said. “It included bird nest searching and monitoring, vegetation surveys, mist netting Eastern Meadowlarks (Sturnella magna), GPS tagging Eastern Meadowlarks, and mapping their territories.”

Lang’s commitment to preserving and protecting wildlife and natural ecosystems drove her to apply for the United Nations Indigenous Youth Forum, which she was chosen for out of more than 400 applicants.

Oregon Tech’s Environmental Sciences program is proud to have students like Lang who participate in environmental conservation and sustainability.

“Tanikwah’s journey from The Wildlife Society’s internship to the United Nations Indigenous Youth Forum is a testament to her dedication and the quality of our students. We are immensely proud of her achievements and the leadership she demonstrates. I look forward to seeing the positive impact she will have on global environmental issues,” said Assistant Professor of Natural Science Christy VanRooyen.

After graduation, Lang would like to pursue a master’s degree. “I am looking at graduate programs that specialize in Indigenous food sovereignty or Indigenous food systems,” Lang said. “My goal would be to conduct a food systems profile for my tribe.”

For more information about Oregon Tech’s Environmental Sciences program, please visit www.oit.edu/academics/degrees/environmental-sciences.

Tanikwah Lang

Lang holding a Meadowlark