New TCU to open in California

Oct 8th, 2013 | By | Category: 25-3: Preserving and Protecting Knowledge, Tribal College News

READY TO ROLL. Marshall McKay of the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation speaks at the 28th annual California Indian Conference about launching a new TCU to serve California’s Native population. Photo courtesy of California State University, Sacramento/Steve McKay

After nearly five years of planning, Marshal McKay, chairman of the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation of California, has stated that his tribe will establish a tribal college next year. McKay made the announcement at the Sacramento Indian Conference last week.

Since the closure of D-Q University in 2005, California has been without a tribal college or university (TCU) recognized by the American Indian Higher Education Consortium. With roughly half a million American Indians, California has the largest Native population in the United States. Although the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation would host the institution, the new TCU would serve California’s greater Native population. Indeed, McKay noted that over 40 of California’s recognized Indian nations have issued resolutions endorsing the founding of a TCU. Further, every California tribe is eligible to participate in the institution’s governance. Currently the future college’s interim board of regents consists of representatives from the Little River Band of Pomo Indians, the Morongo Band of Mission Indians, and the Rincon Band of Luiseño Indians, in addition to members of the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation.

Tentatively called the California Tribal College, the institution has applied for non-profit status. It has also raised nearly $1 million in start-up funds, including substantial contributions from major corporate sponsors such as Goldman Sachs and Seven Post Investment. For more information, visit

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