AIHEC Accepts Comanche College as 36th Member

Aug 15th, 2005 | By | Category: 17-1: Telling Our Stories, Tribal College News

On April 2, 2005, the American Indian Higher Education Consortium (AIHEC) made history by admitting the first tribal college from Oklahoma. Although known as Indian Territory 150 years ago, Oklahoma has not had a tribal college until now.

The AIHEC Board of Directors voted to accept the new college as an “applicant member” after sending a team to visit the college to determine its eligibility. To become a member of AIHEC, a college must meet several criteria. It must be chartered by a tribal government, governed by Native Americans, and have a majority of Native American students. To become a full member, it must be accredited or a candidate for accreditation.

The Comanche Nation Business Committee chartered the college in August 2002, and the Comanche Nation College opened its doors that fall. Since then it has been developing its curriculum, catalog, and educational plan. Located in Lawton, OK, the college now has 260 full-time-equivalent students.

The president of the college is Colin “Kim” Winkelman, Ph.D., and he is an Oglala Lakota. Charles Tippeconnic (Comanche) serves as the director of development and grants and Hadassah Cohen (Lakota) as the dean of academics.

Chartered in 1973 by six tribal colleges, AIHEC now has 35 members in 12 states plus one member college in Canada. The board of directors is composed of the presidents of those 36 tribal colleges and universities. The organization’s headquarters is in Alexandria, VA.

For more information about the Comanche Nation College, call (580) 591-0203.

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