AIHEC Accepts Wyoming College, Elects Officers

Feb 15th, 2006 | By | Category: 17-3: Heroes of Today, Tribal College News
RIDGELY AND SPOONHUNTER

CELEBRATION. Wind River Tribal College President Marlin Spoonhunter (right) joins with Eugene Ridgely III to sing at a community Thanksgiving feast. Photo by Sara Wiles

The American Indian Higher Education Consortium (AIHEC) grew by another member when the board accepted Wind River Tribal College (WRTC, Ethete, WY) at its fall board meeting in October 2005 in Denver, CO. The board also elected officers for the coming year.

After reviewing the report of the team that visited the college, the AIHEC Board of Directors voted to admit the new college as an “applicant member.” To become a member of AIHEC, a college must be chartered by a federally recognized tribal government, governed by American Indians, and have a majority of students who are enrolled members of a federally recognized tribe.

To become a full voting member of the consortium, an institution must be either accredited or a candidate for accreditation, as determined by the regional accreditation agency of jurisdiction.

Cheryl Crazy Bull, president of AIHEC and Northwest Indian College (Bellingham, WA), said, “We are pleased to welcome Wind River Tribal College into AIHEC and look forward to working with them to fulfill our common mission to bring high quality, culturally relevant higher education opportunities to Indian Country.”

Crazy Bull (Sicangu Lakota) was re-elected at the same meeting as president of AIHEC. The new vice president is Ferlin Clark (Diné), president of Diné College; the secretary is Cynthia Lindquist Mala (Spirit Lake Dakota), president of Cankdeska Cikana Community College; the treasurer is Dr. James Shanley (Assiniboine), president of Fort Peck Community College; and the new member-at-large is Tom Davis, president of Little Priest Tribal College.

Wind River Tribal College was chartered by the Northern Arapaho Business Council in September 1997 to serve citizens of the Wind River Indian Reservation and surrounding communities.

The president of the tribal college, Marlin Spoonhunter, is an enrolled member of the Northern Arapaho Tribe. The college has articulation agreements with the University of Wyoming and the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh. The latter agreement requires that Wind River’s faculty possess a minimum of a master’s degree.

Chartered in 1973 by six tribal colleges, AIHEC now has 36 members in 14 states plus one in Alberta, Canada. AIHEC member institutions serve students from over 250 federally recognized tribes as well as non-tribal members. The organization is headquartered in Alexandria, VA.

For more information about the Wind River Tribal College, call (307) 335-8243. For information about AIHEC membership, contact Deborah His Horse Is Thunder at (701) 854-4297, or email dhishorseisthunder@aihec.org.

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