Program Details:

INVST Collaboration with the Black Mesa Water Coalition

The Black Mesa Water Coalition (BMWC), based in Piñon, Arizona (part of the Navajo Nation), would like to deepen its partnership with INVST by working to turn BMWC’s women’s wool buying project into a worker-owned cooperative business. BMWC has invited INVST to research ways to start worker-owned cooperatives, and then present that information to them. Each summer we visit Black Mesa and meet with families, learn about permaculture, work on agricultural and watershed restoration projects, herd sheep, help with daily chores, and bear witness to the impacts of mining and the Relocation Law.

INVST’s goals are to strengthen our collaboration with BMWC; help support Black Mesa’s economic development and autonomy; help maximize revenue from wool sales; help additional people in Piñon find value in BMWC’s programs; and deepen relationships between Black Mesa and CU.

INVST courses and programs develop engaged students who focus on social and environmental justice. In addition to offering this project, INVST also offers Community Studies electives which prepare all CU students to lead and serve people and the planet; the flagship program that has been available at CU-Boulder since 1990 is the two-year INVST Community Leadership Program, which allows undergraduates to earn the Leadership Studies Minor.

This is a private program by request only, or for a specific audience or group. For more information, please visit the program website.


On Campus

  • Institute of Behavioral Science

Outside Colorado

  • Piñon, Arizona

Program Partners

Supporting This Program

  • Black Mesa Water Coalition

Sponsoring Units

Education, School of

  • Center for Community-Engaged Learning and Research (CU Engage)
  • INVST Community Studies

Program Contact

Sabrina Sideris
Program Director/Instructor

Program Categories


  • Business/Economic Development
  • Climate Change
  • Community Resource
  • Diversity
  • Education (Adult)
  • Environmental Issues
  • Social Sciences
  • Sustainability and Energy

Program Types:

  • Civic Engagement
  • Classroom Instruction


  • Adult Learners
  • Indigenous Populations (International)
  • Tribal Communities (in U.S.)