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Canku Ota

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(Many Paths)

An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America


July 14, 2001 - Issue 40


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School News


gathered by Vicki Lockard


The information here will include items of interest for and about Native American schools.
If you have news to share, please let us know!
I can be reached by emailing:


Back To School


School's Out! ... for the Summer

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We will continue to report School News as we get it.
But we expect this to be a little slow for a while.
If you have some School News, please share it with us.

See you in the Fall

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LaPush: Quileute Tribe to build gym

The Quileute School will break ground at 10 a.m. Thursday on a planned $4 million gymnasium to be built in the shape of a tribal canoe.

The groundbreaking will take place on Raven's Crest Street in LaPush.

A federal Bureau of Indian Affairs grant will finance the 17,000-square-foot gym, which will house basketball courts, bathrooms, a cultural room, lockerrooms, a kitchen and a ceremony circle for tribal festivities.

The gym will be supported by five cedar poles representing the fish, whale, wolf, weather and elk societies that make up Quileute culture, said Bonita Cleveland, a cultural tribe specialist and leader of the project.

The project is expected to be completed by January.

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4-Year Degrees Offered at Reservation Campuses

A new agreement will make it easier for students at Nebraska Indian Community College to earn bachelor's degrees.

Students will earn the degrees through Si Tanka/Huron University in South Dakota without leaving Indian Community College campuses in Macy, Santee, Omaha and South Sioux City.

The convenience will be particularly important for students enrolled at the community college's reservation campuses in Santee and Macy, said Ralph Swain, vice president of academic affairs.

"One of the biggest issues with the native population is transportation," he said.

Currently, the community college offers only two-year associate degrees.

The four-year bachelor's degrees will be available in nursing, business management, management information systems, teacher education and criminal justice.

The nursing program will begin in fall 2002 and the others will begin this fall.

Swain said those fields were picked because of student interest and job availability.

Si Tanka, a tribal college in Eagle Butte, S.D., purchased Huron University in May.

Enrollment at the community college's four campuses is about 200. Swain said the bachelor's degree program will boost enrollment.

Additional faculty will be needed, but the cost will be offset by tuition revenue from increased enrollment, Swain said.

The college, founded in 1972, primarily serves the Santee Sioux Nation and the Omaha Nation. Its headquarters are in Macy.

The college's newest campus, at 2451 St. Mary's Ave. in Omaha, opened in January.

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Senator pushes national Native American college

WASHINGTON - Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, an ally of Native Americans in Congress, is backing a plan to create a national Indian university that would allow tribal students to obtain advanced degrees not offered at Indian colleges.

Inouye, chairman of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee, said such a university, funded by the federal government, would offer the nation's 25,000 tribal students the same professional degrees available to non-Indian students at mainstream universities.

"There aren't any medical, law, or dental schools at Indian colleges," Inouye said. "You won't find much Indian law being taught in New York City (colleges)."

None of the 31 Indian colleges in the United States offer doctorate degrees or professional degrees in law, medicine or dentistry. Instead, most of them offer two-year associate degrees in fields ranging from Indian culture to computers.

Richard Williams, executive director of the American Indian College Fund in Denver, supports creating a national university, but would not want it to compete with federal funding for existing Indian colleges.

Each year, Congress appropriates less money for tribal college students than the $6,000 per student authorized under the Tribally Controlled College or University Act. This year, Congress appropriated $3,840 per student.

"I would be behind the proposal 100 percent if the tribal colleges would receive full funding," Williams said.

Indian colleges are dependent on federal funding because they are usually on reservations or in economically depressed areas that do not have a strong local tax base.

By comparison, mainstream colleges receive about $6,000 per student from federal, state and local revenues, according to the Virginia-based American Indian Higher Education Consortium that supports the mission of Indian colleges.

Besides chairing the Indian Affairs Committee, Inouye is on the Senate education appropriations subcommittee, which strengthens his hand for creating a national Indian university.

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SGU gets grant to help special needs students

St. Gregory's University has been awarded a $760,000, four-year U.S. Department of Education grant to provide expanded services to students with special needs.

The Student Support Services Trio grant -- which is highly competitive -- will allow SGU to build on its long tradition of reaching out to diverse students by structuring, tracking and evaluating services for 80 eligible students who face roadblocks to continuing their education.

"This recognition by the U.S. Department of Education is an affirmation of St. Gregory's commitment to providing a personalized education of the highest quality for an extremely diverse student body," said SGU President Father Lawrence Stasyszen, O.S.B.

"We are especially delighted that this major grant will assist us in helping Native American and other minority students to develop their full potential through higher education and personal development," the president said. "Such efforts have been an important part of our educational mission since our foundation in Indian Territory 125 years ago."

In particular, the grant is aimed at assisting students from Native American and other minority backgrounds who traditionally might not have been encouraged to pursue a college education. Among the grant's focuses is providing specialized career counseling, tutors and mentors who can help Native American students pursue personal and academic success.

The Student Support Services grant builds upon SGU's accomplishments in assisting Native American students through Project Success, a joint effort between the university and the Citizen Potawatomi Nation. Project Success targets Native American students in grades nine through 12 in central Oklahoma and provides free college tuition while students are in high school, free books, free after-school tutoring and mentoring, free ACT and SAT tests, and free workshops on financial aid and applying to college.

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  Canku Ota is a free Newsletter celebrating Native America, its traditions and accomplishments . We do not provide subscriber or visitor names to anyone. Some articles presented in Canku Ota may contain copyright material. We have received appropriate permissions for republishing any articles. Material appearing here is distributed without profit or monetary gain to those who have expressed an interest. This is in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. section 107.  

Canku Ota is a copyright © 2000, 2001 of Vicki Lockard and Paul Barry.


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