United Tribes Now Offers Community Health Degree

Nov 15th, 2007 | By | Category: 19-2: Our Story, Our Way, Tribal College News


BACK ON PAVEMENT. After pedaling narrow trails in the hot son, the UTTC group felt both satisfied and disappointed to be returning to Medora. From left: former student health center nurse Joanie Ramey Neumann; students Chris New Holy, Gilbert Perkins, and Lonnie Tallman; Dakota Cyclery guide Jennifer Morlock; and student Duane Jackson. Photo by Dennis Neumann.

(Based on Information provided by Dennis J. Neumann)

Beginning this fall, United Tribes Technical College (UTTC, Bismarck, ND) is offering a new career and technical education program in the field of Community Health. The program builds on the success of the college’s 10-year-old Injury Prevention program. It integrates the former curriculum and expands into the wider field of Community Health.

Phil Baird, vice president of Career and Technical Education, said, “The new program will provide the knowledge and skill sets needed for graduates to serve in the Community Health field.”

Coursework in the UTTC degree will include a wide range of health topics, including environmental science, injury prevention, gerontology, medical terminology, multicultural health, nutrition, and personal and consumer health.

To assist students in transferring to a 4-year college or university, UTTC is exploring articulation agreements with similar programs of study at Minnesota’s Bemidji State University and other institutions that offer bachelor degrees in community health.

An outing on mountain bikes in the Badlands put some UTTC students on a healthy lifestyle trail. To Lonnie Tallman the choppy buttes of the Little Missouri River Valley aren’t much different than the hills at his grandma’s place on the Pine Ridge Reservation.

Tallman was familiar with riding bike across prairie trails, up and down ravines, and through creeks and washouts. “It’s good to get out. To see nature,” says Tallman, who began studying Construction Technology at UTTC in January.

The 1-day trip was organized by the United Tribes Strengthening Lifestyles Program, part of the college’s Department of Community Wellness Services. The riders were outfitted with the TREK brand of mountain bikes, which were purchased by the program as part of its mission to challenge students with regular activities that promote fitness.

To pursue an adventure in that environment UTTC called on Dakota Cyclery, a business that caters to mountain bikers who want to challenge the terrain on “two-wheeled ponies.” Co-owner Jennifer Morlock, an experienced mountain biker, served as leader and guide for a 10 mile ride. The route, from Buffalo Gap to Medora, ND, is an offshoot of the Maah Daah Hey Trail, a popular 96-mile recreational trail.

According to a trail information guide, Maah Daah Hey is from the Mandan language for “Grandfather” or “long-lasting,” as in things that have been around for a long time and deserve respect. Paths throughout the region were worn into the earth by the steady passing of wildlife, cattle, and buffalo, and are said to have been routes used by American Indians.

Perhaps the fittest rider, Duane Jackson, had no trouble with the heat or keeping pace with Morlock. Jackson, a student from Spirit Lake who studies Automotive Service Technology, said, “I’d do it everyday if I could.” He credited his endurance to daily two mile runs and weight lifting in the UTTC wellness center.

For more information about the United Tribes Community Health Program contact Michelle Schoenwald (701) 255-3285 x 1258, mschoenwald@uttc.edu or Larry Carlson x 1350, lcarlson@uttc.edu. For other information call (701) 255-3285 x 1293, or visit www.uttc.edu.

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