IAIA to Offer Beekeeping Course

The Institute of American Indian Arts program will be offered online and in person without cost.

The Institute of American Indian Arts will be offering a free train-the-trainer course on beekeeping to a dozen facilitators working in tribal communities or with Indigenous organization, including the Cooperative Extension programs of tribal colleges and universities.

Applications are due by Sept. 15 for the course, which can be taken virtually or in-person at the IAIA campus in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Eight of the online sessions will run on Tuesday afternoons for 1.5 hours from Oct. 3 through Dec. 5, with monthly sessions also scheduled for April through July of 2024.

Those who complete the course in Introduction to Beekeeping & Pollinator Stewardship for Indigenous Stewards will receive initial beekeeping equipment to help them get established. Plans call for the equipment to arrive in time for participants to set up apiaries for the 2025 season.

The institute received a grant from the Southwest Climate Hub to offer this Train-the-Trainer course. Instructor Melanie Kirby has a master’s degree in entomology from the University of Washington. Beekeeping is an important part of her agricultural work as an Extension educator with IAIA’s Land-Grant program.

Kirby, who describes herself as a Tortugas Pueblo/Mestiza, has been operating apiaries at IAIA for several years. This video shows her in the process of harvesting honey,  which the institute distributes as Thunder Bee Honey. Potential participants can apply at the following link: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSd6zDd7eyr60Sw7J5mKbaLNafVe1r38VVWd8qx9Nxoxjs7Lsg/viewform?pli=1.

Story published August 28, 2023

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