Based at the Medical School’s Duluth Campus, the Memory Keepers Medical Discovery Team on Rural and American Indian Health Equity (MK-MDT) is one of four University of Minnesota Medical School Medical Discovery Team’s funded by the State of Minnesota legislature. The Memory Keepers Medical Discovery Team is a $15.6 million, ten-year initiative to achieve the state's goals of improving patient and population health, lowering costs and improving healthcare experiences.
Located in downtown Duluth, the Medical Discovery Team resides in a newly renovated team science workspace that encompasses multiple research offices and meeting spaces for faculty and staff. The space was designed by a local Minnesota Ojibwe architect to foster interactions among the Memory Keepers investigators, and of equal importance, to create a culturally welcoming, accessible setting for community engagement with Native people and those from rural reservation settings to facilitate their involvement in participatory research.
Cultural features incorporate the presence of a fireplace, indicating the importance of our activities, combined with a ceremonial room with ventilation to allow smudging, as well as white cedar and other building materials traditionally associated with healing. The integration of the medicine wheel is also represented in the Memory Keepers color themes and team logo. Our location in Downtown Duluth offers free parking and disability access for our visitors. In addition, there is a formal meeting space and presentation area for larger group settings, along with AV resources and videoconference capabilities for distant conversations.
Our recent building renovations in 2021 introduced additional office spaces, conference facilities, and a 720 sq. foot community-based participatory research training laboratory with high-tech capabilities to connect Indigenous and rural community leadership, advisory council members and community researchers across our region.
Community-Based Participatory Research Training Lab
Our Community-Based Participatory Research Training Lab includes interview and focus group training rooms, as well as spaces for observation. Our goal is to create a training framework that will build capacity among students, researchers and faculty to conduct critically engaged, scientifically rigorous health equity research that honors Indigenous knowledge to benefit Indigenous and rural communities.
Learn more about upcoming opportunities.