Duluth campus
 
Duluth Campus

Tribal Resource and Environmental Stewardship M.T.R.E.S.

American Indian Studies
College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Link to a list of faculty for this program.
Contact Information
Department of American Indian Studies, University of Minnesota Duluth, Cina Hall 110 1123 University Drive, Duluth, MN 55812
  • Program Type: Master's
  • Requirements for this program are current for Fall 2022
  • Length of program in credits: 36
  • This program does not require summer semesters for timely completion.
  • Degree: Master of Tribal Res and Env Stewardship M T R E S
Along with the program-specific requirements listed below, please read the General Information section of this website for requirements that apply to all major fields.
The Master of Tribal Resource and Environmental Stewardship is an applied degree designed to meet the professional and leadership needs of tribal natural resources and environmental programs. Students will develop fundamental knowledge and skills for natural resources careers responsive to community needs and aspirations. Those who currently work or aspire to work in natural resources programs in tribal governance and related contexts will benefit from this program's emphasis on integrated approaches to the stewardship and protection of natural resources based upon Indigenous environmental systems and worldviews. The curriculum is based upon the interrelationship of biological, physical, and cultural systems. Required courses address program operations, sustainability, and integrated ecosystems studies. The elective course and the capstone project provide opportunities for personalized areas of focus. Program delivery is designed to accommodate working professionals and support existing commitments to families and home communities.
Program Delivery
  • completely online (all program coursework can be completed online)
Prerequisites for Admission
The preferred undergraduate GPA for admittance to the program is 3.00.
Other requirements to be completed before admission:
The MTRES is designed to meet the needs of tribal natural resource management. Natural resource professionals have a wide variety of expertise ranging across the sciences, liberal arts, and business and economics. Students entering the program will have a Bachelor's degree but no specific disciplinary requirements are necessary. International and domestic applicants whose first language is not English must submit current
Special Application Requirements:
Unofficial transcripts or academic records, two letters of recommendation, and a personal statement must be uploaded directly to the online application. The application deadline is August 15. A cohort of up to 20 students is admitted for fall every other year. score(s) from one of the English proficiency tests noted below.
International applicants must submit score(s) from one of the following tests:
  • TOEFL
    • Internet Based - Total Score: 79
    • Internet Based - Writing Score: 21
    • Internet Based - Reading Score: 19
  • IELTS
    • Total Score: 6.5
    • Reading Score: 6.5
    • Writing Score: 6.5
  • MELAB
    • Final score: 80
Key to test abbreviations (TOEFL, IELTS, MELAB).
For an online application or for more information about graduate education admissions, see the General Information section of this website.
Program Requirements
Plan C: Plan C requires 36 major credits and 0 credits outside the major. There is no final exam. A capstone project is required.
Capstone Project: The directed project is the capstone experience of the MTRES program, and is based on the plan previously approved in the seminar course. There is flexibility to do a wide range of projects: internships, service projects, research projects, or other activities related to tribal natural resource stewardship that engages the community and involves communication with others.
This program may be completed with a minor.
Use of 4xxx courses toward program requirements is permitted under certain conditions with adviser approval.
Course Requirements (28 credits)
Take the following courses:
TRES 5100 - Foundations of Indigenous Environmental Systems and Worldviews (Bioregionalism) (3.0 cr)
TRES 5101 - Tribal Natural Resource Program Management 1 (3.0 cr)
TRES 5102 - Tribal Natural Resource Program Management 2 (3.0 cr)
TRES 5201 - Integrated Ecosystems Stewardship 1 (3.0 cr)
TRES 5202 - Integrated Ecosystems Stewardship 2 (3.0 cr)
TRES 5301 - Tribal Natural Resource Economics (3.0 cr)
TRES 5400 - Directed Project Seminar (1.0 cr)
TRES 5994 - Tribal Natural Resource Stewardship Directed Project (3.0 cr)
MTAG 5110 - Principles of Tribal Sovereignty I (3.0 cr)
MTAG 5120 - Principles of Tribal Sovereignty II (3.0 cr)
Electives (8 credits)
Select 8 credits from the following in consultation with the advisor and director of graduate studies. One 4xxx level course, up to 4 credits, may be applied as an elective. Other courses can be chosen with advisor and director of graduate studies approval.
AMIN 4250 - American Indian Diplomacy: Treaties, Compacts, and Agreements [GLOBAL PER] (3.0 cr)
AMIN 4410 - American Indian Philosophies [HUMANITIES, CDIVERSITY] (3.0 cr)
AMIN 4630 - American Indians and the Media [HUMANITIES, CDIVERSITY] (3.0 cr)
AMIN 4640 - American Indians in the Movies [HUMANITIES, CDIVERSITY] (3.0 cr)
AMIN 4810 - Business Processes in Tribal Administration (3.0 cr)
AMIN 4840 - Current Issues and Opportunities in Tribal Administration and Governance (3.0 cr)
MTAG 5210 - Administration Governance I (Strategic) (3.0 cr)
MTAG 5220 - Administration and Governance II (Operations) (3.0 cr)
MTAG 5230 - Advanced Tribal Administration and Governance I (Human Resources) (3.0 cr)
MTAG 5310 - Foundations of Leadership and Ethics in Indigenous Community Life and Organizations (3.0 cr)
MTAG 5320 - Applied Leadership and Ethics in an Indigenous Organizational Context (3.0 cr)
MTAG 5430 - Tribal Finance, Accounting and Budgets I (3.0 cr)
MTAG 5440 - Tribal Finance, Accounting and Budgets II (3.0 cr)
MTAG 5530 - Federal Indian Law I (3.0 cr)
MTAG 5540 - Federal Indian Law II (3.0 cr)
 
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TRES 5100 - Foundations of Indigenous Environmental Systems and Worldviews (Bioregionalism)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
This introductory course explores environmental resources, practices, and stewardship from tribal perspectives. A variety of instructional experiences including sharing circles, guest lectures and field study introduce students to related Indigenous knowledge, management systems and stewardship practices. The current needs of tribal communities are examined through studying the idea of Native scholars, traditional teachers and environmental activists. pre-req: admission to MTRES program or instructor consent
TRES 5101 - Tribal Natural Resource Program Management 1
Credits: 3.0 [max 6.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
This course is the first in a series of two that will examine topics and issues that a natural resource manager will face in the day-to-day operation of a comprehensive tribal natural resource and environmental management program in Indian County. These courses will provide an overview of a tribal natural resources director's basic functions and responsibilities, the types of programs and projects that trial natural resources department might implement, the agencies and other sources that provide funding and the knowledge and skills that a director will need to operate an overall successful program. These courses will be taught from a practical, on-the-ground perspective to facilitate an understanding of the realities and typical circumstances that a tribal natural resource program director encounters. pre-req: admission to MTRES program or instructor consent
TRES 5102 - Tribal Natural Resource Program Management 2
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
This second course in tribal natural resource management will delve into greater detail on man of the topics covered in the first course and focus on case studies and evaluation of day operation of a comprehensive tribal natural resource and environmental management program in Indian Country. This course will address aspects of intergovernmental relations with other tribes and with federal, state, local and other agencies. pre-req: TRES 5101
TRES 5201 - Integrated Ecosystems Stewardship 1
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
This course is the first in a series of two that will provide the student with the understanding of the biological, chemical, and physical processes necessary to support Native American ways of life in balance with pressures of economic development. The course emphasizes practices that will provide sustainable subsistence foods and medicines for tribal member harvest and to support cultural activities. An integrated natural resource management approach will be used to discuss the reasons why clean air, water, and land are required to support a health environment, which in turn supports a health human population. Specific topics in this course may include geological setting, surface water and groundwater interaction, physical environment of lakes and streams, aquatic food webs, biodiversity, fisheries management, wild rice management, assessment of water quality trends, carrying capacity, environmental regulations and standards. Concepts of mineral stewardship on tribal lands will also be explored. This includes principles of the occurrence, extraction, and processing. pre-req: Admission to MTRES program or instructor consent
TRES 5202 - Integrated Ecosystems Stewardship 2
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
This course is the second in a series of two that will provide the student with the understanding of the biological, chemical, and physical processes necessary to support Native American ways of life in balance with pressures of economic development. Specific topics in this course may include wildlife management, range management, land use planning, terrestrial food webs, sustainable agriculture/forestry practices, assessment of air quality, biodiversity, and land use planning. Concept so energy stewardship on tribal lands will be explored. Carbon-based energy resources, with emphasis on coal and petroleum/gas; fundamentals of nuclear energy; technology of extraction, production, refinement, consumption, and byproduct treatment/disposal; importance of carbon-based energy in global industrialization; limits of population growth imposed by energy requirements? principles and associated technologies of renewable energy and energy conversion, with focus on solar, geothermal, tidal, and biofuel energy resources. pre-req: TRES 5201
TRES 5301 - Tribal Natural Resource Economics
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Periodic Spring
Through consideration of multiple perspectives regarding value and exchange, this course pursues micro- and macroeconomic analyses of natural resources under tribal stewardship. Key topics can include modes of valuation, resource markets, sustainability, pollution control, benefit-cost analysis, air and water quality, waste management, and conservation. pre-req: admission to MTRES program or instructor consent
TRES 5400 - Directed Project Seminar
Credits: 1.0 [max 1.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
This course provides students an opportunity to plan for their directed project and receive feedback on written and oral communication skills. Students plan and submit the directed project for approval as part of this course. pre-req: TRES 5102, admission to MTRES program or instructor consent
TRES 5994 - Tribal Natural Resource Stewardship Directed Project
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: S-N only
Typically offered: Periodic Fall, Spring & Summer
Tribal Natural Resource Stewardship Directed Project pre-req: MTRES student
MTAG 5110 - Principles of Tribal Sovereignty I
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
This course provides students with a general background of the history, development, structure, and politics associated with indigenous governments. We will examine North American indigenous governance from pre-colonial times to the present, focusing on both the evolution and alteration of these governments as well as the difficult political decisions indigenous peoples faced when confronted by the colonizing forces of European states, the U.S., and individual states, and the modifications developed by indigenous nations in their efforts to retain and exercise their sovereign powers. prereq: MTAG or MTRES student or instructor consent
MTAG 5120 - Principles of Tribal Sovereignty II
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
This course examines the challenges facing tribal governments as they exercise their sovereignty and involves political, economic, and intergovernmental perspectives. Part one examines tribal resource management, analyzing historical use of land, land loss, and contemporary efforts to develop sustainable environmental plans for water, timber, wildlife, and subsurface resources. Part two focuses on the various means tribal governments have devised to exercise sovereignty, such as gaming, small business development, tourism, and joint ventures with partners. Part three concentrates attention at the sub-national level and pays close attention to the political, legal, and economics relationships that have developed between Native nations, state governments, county governments, and municipal entities. prereq: 5110 or instructor consent
AMIN 4250 - American Indian Diplomacy: Treaties, Compacts, and Agreements (GLOBAL PER)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: AMIN 4250/TAG 4250
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Indigenous Nations have long engaged in diplomatic arrangements with one another, foreign nations, colonial/state governments, and the United States. Such political engagements affirm the inherent sovereignty of First Nations, recognizing the distinctive rights and power unique to Native peoples and were used to forge friendships, end wars, cede lands and resources, create reservations, and reserve hunting and fishing rights. This course examines the history of First Nations treaty making, the legal and political status of Indian treaties and agreement, the ambiguities and problems in indigenous-state diplomacy and treaty litigation. prereq: minimum 60 credits
AMIN 4410 - American Indian Philosophies (HUMANITIES, CDIVERSITY)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Fall Odd Year
In this course, we examine both historical and contemporary philosophical writings by American Indian thinkers from an array of different tribal nations. Engaging with Indigenous notions of time, gender, environmental interrelationships, and spiritual wellbeing, we explore the implications of these philosophies in addressing contemporary issues of environmental devastation, race/gender inequity, and, most critically, Native cultural and social resurgence in the 21st century. pre-req: minimum 60 credits
AMIN 4630 - American Indians and the Media (HUMANITIES, CDIVERSITY)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Examination of Native controlled and non-Native images of American Indians in varied media including journalism, television, and advertising from the times of European contact to the present. Explorations and comparisons of historic images with the contemporary. Students will participate in a hands-on media watch research project. prereq: minimum 60 credits
AMIN 4640 - American Indians in the Movies (HUMANITIES, CDIVERSITY)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Indian Country at the beginning of the film era; government Indian policies during the film era; silent film; war and romance; westerns; Indian and White heroes and heroines; stereotypes; modern Native-made film. prereq: 60 credits
AMIN 4810 - Business Processes in Tribal Administration
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: AMIN 4810/TAG 4810
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
This course examines fundamental business "best practices" in accounting, economics, operations, organizational management, statistics, financial management, marketing, and human resources within the specific context of Tribal enterprises and government.
AMIN 4840 - Current Issues and Opportunities in Tribal Administration and Governance
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: AMIN 4840/TAG 4840
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
This course will explore contemporary issues, challenges, and opportunities for tribal governments and consider innovative administrative/governance approaches. The significance of how external decisions by the federal or state government might impact tribal decision making will be examined.
MTAG 5210 - Administration Governance I (Strategic)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
This course will provide an overview of the integration and application of strategic management principles in tribal governments. Topics will include the development of mission statements, goals, strategies, and approaches to implementation. The course will focus on tribal strategic plans and issues specific to tribes, such as the federal-tribal relationship, tribal constitutions, and tribal ordinances and regulations. Also, the role of federal and state government policymakers as they interrelate with administrators in strategic management decisions will be studied. prereq: MTAG student or instructor consent
MTAG 5220 - Administration and Governance II (Operations)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
This course will provide an overview of organizational management theories with an emphasis on tribal governments. It will focus on the various types of tribal governments, the role of tribal managers, tribal management functions, communications processes, and management information systems design and development. It will also explore different models of delivering services on reservations, including the direct federal service model, the 638 contact model, and the self-governance compact. Also, the role of federal and state government policymakers as they interrelate with administrators in operations management decisions will be studied. prereq: 5210 or instructor consent
MTAG 5230 - Advanced Tribal Administration and Governance I (Human Resources)
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Prerequisites: 5220 or instructor consent
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
This course will focus on the theoretical and practical aspects of solving problems, the activity that takes up the majority of a tribal manager's day. Human resource management will be emphasized. The use of tribal hypothetical and real-life situations will be heavily relied upon. Case studies of reservations and tribal organizations will be utilized to define problems, collect and analyze data, and seek creative solutions. The use of analogy, brainstorming, the scientific method, systems analysis, and graphic representations will be studied, as well as the role of federal and state government policymakers as they interact with administrators on human resources matters. prereq: 5220 or instructor consent
MTAG 5310 - Foundations of Leadership and Ethics in Indigenous Community Life and Organizations
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
This course will develop a general understanding of leadership and ethics. Content will include a survey of basic philosophies, models, figures, and applications to community-based scenarios and institutions. Western scholarship will be contrasted with Indigenous perspectives and lived experience as a means of exploring cultural difference. The role of traditional values and beliefs, internalized oppression, and contemporary community institutional dynamics are core course topics. prereq: MTAG student or instructor consent
MTAG 5320 - Applied Leadership and Ethics in an Indigenous Organizational Context
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
This course explores leadership and ethics in an applied context. Students will explore what it means to be an effective ethical leader from a personal and community-based perspective. This involves a critical study of organizational culture and systems-based change processes. Case studies will be used to facilitate exploration and analysis. Reflecting on theories and philosophies of ethics and leadership, students will identify a personal leadership style, and determine what it means to be a decolonized leader in contemporary community life. prereq: 5310 or instructor consent
MTAG 5430 - Tribal Finance, Accounting and Budgets I
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
This course will provide an overview of financial terms, processes, agencies, and laws as they apply to tribal governments. It will focus on overseeing budgeting, bookkeeping, accounting, and purchasing functions; interpreting financial statements; conducting due diligence; and negotiating indirect cost rates with the federal government. Emphasis will be placed on the role of the federal government in tribal financial management, the role of tribal sovereign immunity in financial transactions, and the roles of tribal accountants and auditors. prereq: MTAG 5120, MTAG student or instructor consent
MTAG 5440 - Tribal Finance, Accounting and Budgets II
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
This course will focus on the federal laws and regulations that tribal managers are required to comply with annually. These laws and regulations include the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act, Title 31, the Single Audit Act, and auditing rules under the Tribal Self-Determination Act. The course will also focus on compliance with federal grants, the preparation of year-end financial statements, and the role of circulars from the federal Office of Management and Budget. The general standards for accountants and the penalties for non-compliance will be studied. The role of federal auditors and investigators will be compared to the role of tribes' internal auditors. prereq: 5430 or instructor consent
MTAG 5530 - Federal Indian Law I
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
This course examines the formulation, implementation, and evolution of Indian policy from pre-colonial times to the self-governance era. This course provides a chronological framework and theoretical context in which policies, programs, and events can be seen interacting with each other to produce the cumulative body of treaties, statutes, and court decisions. Students analyze major federal Indian policies that define indigenous/federal political relationship, examining the views and attitudes of policy-makers and gauging the reactions of indigenous nations to those policies. prereq: MTAG 5320, MTAG student or instructor consent
MTAG 5540 - Federal Indian Law II
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
Federal Indian law has had profound affect on the lives, liberties, and properties of indigenous peoples. At times, U.S. policy and Supreme Court rulings have worked to protect aboriginal rights; at other times, these policies and decisions have had devastating consequences. This course examines the role and practice of the U.S. Supreme Court as a policy-making institution in their dealings with Indigenous nations. This examination requires us to think historically and theoretically; to question the origins and exercise of federal judicial power; and examine the application of federal law to indigenous peoples and Indian citizens. prereq: 5530 or instructor consent