TCU presidents attend Tribal-State address

May 15th, 2013 | By | Category: 24-4: Language Revitalization, Tribal College News
By Vonnie Alberts

TEAMING UP. North Dakota tribal college presidents Cynthia Lindquist, James Davis, Russell Mason Jr., and Laurel Vermillion join tribal leaders in Bismarck for the annual State of the Tribal-State Relationship Address.

In a collaborative effort to showcase the five tribal colleges of North Dakota, the institutions’ presidents met at the state capitol in Bismarck. For the past several years, the North Dakota legislature has invited the state’s tribal chairmen to offer what has become known as the State of the Tribal-State Relationship Address. The testimony takes place at the beginning of every legislative session and often includes a list of shared concerns from the Three Affiliated Tribes of the Fort Berthold Reservation, the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa, the Spirit Lake Sioux Nation, the Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate, and the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe.

Chairman Richard McCloud of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa gave the address, focusing on improved economic development, higher quality of learning, and expanding workforce development initiatives on reservations. McCloud invited the North Dakota Association of Tribal Colleges (NDATC) to participate in the Tribal-State Relationship Day activities. The Bismarck state capitol building was buzzing with legislators, tribal leaders, and everyday citizens as they stopped to visit informational and recruitment booths sponsored by Fort Berthold Community College (New Town, ND), Turtle Mountain Community College (Belcourt, ND), Cankdeska Cikana Community College (Fort Totten, ND), United Tribes Technical College (Bismarck, ND), and Sitting Bull College (Fort Yates, ND).

NDATC will be presenting a special bill to the state legislature later this month to fund a two-year initiative focusing on workforce development. McCloud stated, “Our education system needs to equip our students to thrive in the global economy and, most importantly, it needs to promote a safe and healthy environment for every student.”

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