Mae (Christina) Hey
Department of History
403 Major Williams Hall, 220 Stanger St., Blacksburg, VA 24061
Mae Hey’s undergraduate education focused on geology and geography, human-Nature relationships. Her two graduate degrees are in curriculum and instruction. Her Ph.D. research focused on the confluence of Indigenous worldview/ knowledge and science education, a natural blending of traditional local knowledge and practices—practices that support creative problem-solving, human empowerment, community capacity building, and a more sustainable future.
Hey completed a two-year InclusiveVT postdoctoral fellowship under the Office of Inclusion and Diversity. In that position, she nurtured relationships with tribal communities in Virginia to foster experiential learning and applied research opportunities with Virginia Tech. She continues to work with Virginia tribes on community viability projects related to Land-centered learning.
Much of Hey’s work is focused on critical participation, which is defined as reflective actions in the real world, occurring in real time, for the purpose of knowledge production and transformation in the present. As a critical participant she creates relational spaces through thoughtful and persistent engagement within communities.
Hey stewards the Indigenous Friendship Garden at Virginia Tech. In the garden and other spaces, she works with Land to support Nature-centered learning, to close wellness inequities involving food, and to promote sustainability through kincentric ecology. She also serves Virginia Tech as an Assistant Professor, a Faculty Fellow for their Office of Inclusion and Diversity, a Faculty Affiliate for their Food Studies Program, and a Faculty Fellow for their Center for Food Systems and Community Transformation. She is a Sequoyah Fellow of the American Indian Science and Engineering Society and a member of the Native American Food Sovereignty Alliance’s culinary mentorship program.
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