AIHEC Network Presents Law, History, Art

Nov 15th, 1999 | By | Category: 11-2: Teacher Education, Tribal College News

During academic year 1998-99 nearly a full day’s courses each quarter were offered over the American Indian Higher Education Consortium’s Distance Learning Network. Salish Kootenai College in Montana produced the tribal law class. Haskell Indian Nations University produced the American Indians in the twentieth century class, which presented an overview of the century’s legal developments impacting Indian Country, combined with interviews of elders who actually lived through each era.

Three of the AIHEC colleges cooperated to produce a new class, appreciation of American Indian art, with Northwest Indian College coordinating the material. The course segments are based on major cultural areas, and the classes are being presented by experts from the Southwest, Woodlands, Great Basin, Plateau, Plains, Pacific Northwest, and Alaska/Tlingit regions. Various tribal colleges are preparing other classes, including developing a culturally appropriate curriculum, teaching to a camera, developing a tribal language program, and using class management software.

The network connects the AIHEC colleges via satellite communications so the colleges and their communities can share classes and teleconferences. In June, they broadcast “Working for a Healthier America: the White House Conference on Mental Health.” In March, the network broadcast a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) teleconference, which originated from Southwest Indian Polytechnic Institute (SIPI) in Albuquerque. It was sponsored by SIPI, the National Center for Resource Innovations, the Intertribal GIS Council, Inc., and the Federal Geographic Data Committee. Various federal agencies, such as the Center for Disease Control, Social Security Administration, and the Indian Health Service, are planning teleconferences using the AIHEC network to provide information and training to remote Indian communities.

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