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Sage Phillips

Sage Phillips is a proud Penobscot Nation citizen and recent graduate of UConn’s M.A. Human Rights program with a focus in Indigenous education rights as human rights.
Phillips is originally from Old Town, Maine, where she grew up close to her community and elders. As a 2021 Truman, Udall, and Cohen Scholar, Phillips has committed herself to a life in public service.
She began working with the Native American Cultural Programs at the University of Connecticut (UConn) as an undergrad in 2018, determined to transform and expand the programs. Centering her work in creating good relations between UConn and the land it currently occupies, Phillips is a strong advocate for future ancestors and generations at land-grant institutions.
In 2020, Sage received a grant to begin a research effort surrounding UConn’s history as a land-grant institution (LGI). The project today, known as LandGrabCT, was developed in partnership with the Native American Cultural Programs, the Dodd Center for Human Rights, and Greenhouse Studios. The effort has received resounding support and positive feedback, as it serves to educate the community-at-large about the historical traumas LGIs were permitted to commit against Indigenous peoples and their lands. In 2022, LandGrabCT was named as a 20 for 20 Connecticut Game Changer for Innovation in Connecticut History.
In her free time, she is engaged with the Wabanaki Alliance as a member of the Coalition Building Team working to defend, promote, and protect sovereignty for the Wabanaki Tribes of Maine. Her latest achievement, being named a 2024 Champion for Change Fellow by the Center for Native American Youth has allowed her to connect with Native youth across the country. Her advocacy as a Champ is focused on creating equitable solutions for Indigenous youth seeking access to higher education institutions, primarily land-grant institutions. She credits her opportunities and successes to her grandfather and father, from whom she learned leadership at an early age while watching their work in the historic Penobscot River Restoration Project.