From Vince Devlin, of the Missoulian:
PABLO – An educational partnership agreement announced Wednesday morning between the Naval Undersea Warfare Center of Newport, R.I., and Salish Kootenai College here seemed to kill a lot more than two birds with one stone.
At its most basic level, the agreement will provide internships for SKC students who will assist with research and development of digital acoustic sensor technology at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center.
But that’s just the start.
It should also help the college recruit science, technology, engineering and mathematics students to its campus who can take advantage of the opportunity.
It will fund sabbaticals for SKC faculty members so that they can participate in the research.
That will help Luana Ross, first-year president of SKC, steer the tribal college in the “research institution” direction she is pursuing.
And the CEO who helped broker the agreement says the tribally owned company he runs benefits as well.
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There are few in the world of higher education who aren’t holding their breath as Congress and state legislatures talk cuts, cuts, cuts. And tribal colleges are no exception.
The Missoulian’s Vince Devlin examines what massive funding shortages could do to Salish Kootenai College, on the Flathead Indian Reservation.
SKC, arguably the most successful tribal college in the nation, could face up to $1 million in cuts, which would mean laying off faculty, and see a steep decline in student assistance funds.
There’s been much talk about how proposed cuts at the federal and state levels will affect Montana’s university system, including its community colleges, SKC President Luana Ross says.
But she’s seen little discussion about the potential effects on Montana’s tribal colleges.
SKC is facing the loss of almost $500,000 in direct state and federal funds. If that happens, says Lon Whitaker, vice president of business affairs on the Pablo campus, the fallout – including higher tuition, which could lead to a drop in enrollment – could double the impact on the school, and take away job training and educational opportunities for people who need it most.
. . .
“The way out of poverty is education,” SKC’s president says. “That’s almost a no-brainer.”
Number of Native smokers remains high
Courtesy of Indian Country Today
With Native American Heritage Month in full swing, the serious concern over the continued high-numbers of Native smokers is also being highlighted,Indian Country Today
In 2009, almost a quarter of the Native population smoked. The EX project, which is a collaborative public health campaign presented by the National Alliance for Tobacco Cessation, is hoping to drop that number to zero.
“Native Americans continue to smoke at a high rate,” said Cheryl G. Healton, president and CEO of the American Legacy Foundation, “and it is an extremely difficult addiction to end. It’s important that Native Americans who do smoke are provided with quitting solutions. EX is a free resource created by and for smokers, and I am confident that it can help Americans re-learn life without cigarettes.”
Visiting speaker details problems with Native Americans as mascots
The author of “Native Americans in Sports,” Richard King visited Central Michigan’s campus to discuss the use of Native symbols and cultural representations as mascots.
The Michigan Central Life reports that King spoke on the common misconceptions and misrepresentations brought about by the images used as mascots.
“Native American mascots emerge out of commodity racism,” King said. “Misrepresentation of Indians leads to misrecognition”.
King closed with tips on moving forward from the issue of wrongful use of Native Americans in sports.
People have to be aware they are privileged, King said. They also have to work to recognize the humanity of indigenous people and combat racism, he said.
Treaty law, tribal sovereignty nuances, confusions discussed on Flathead Reservation
Attorney Dan Decker gave a presentation about treaty law and tribal sovereignty at SKC Monday. (B.L. Azure photo)
Bernie Azure of the Char-Koosta
News attended attorney Dan Decker’s presentation of Tribal law and sovereignty. Decker discussed what he sees as confusion on the part of Natives and non-Natives on both issues. Decker was speaking at Salish Kootenai College as a part of the W.J. Kellogg Foundation’s Heart Lines lecture series.
“The earliest treaties were a nation-to-nation basis with European nations then after the American Revolution the treaties continued to be on a nation-to-nation basis,” Decker said. “They are as good today as they were yesterday.”
Native American studies course for MT educators
My mom (on her way to completing 33 years of teaching middle school in Lolo) was excited to see this in the teachers’ lounge: Montana State University is offering two Native American Studies Spring 2011 online courses. “Federal Indian Law and Policy,” along with “Native America: Dispelling the Myths” will run starting in January for 12 credits in NAS (toward graduate credit). Interested educators can visit MSU’s website.