In today’s world an education is necessary more than ever. The economy is global, competition for jobs comes from outside our country’s borders, and nothing is certain. The same is true in Indian country.
For our people to survive and flourish, we need to educate our next generation of leaders. Our people need to be educated not just in traditional subjects, but also Indian leadership, Indian traditions, our languages, and more.
But an education is not enough. Indian people know that we also need a good heart, dedication to making decisions that are the right ones for our people, and the support and encouragement of those people to lead the way.
Tribal colleges are the proving grounds of both an education and training and education in the Indian way. Students can test themselves academically, socially, and spiritually at a tribal college.
The American Indian College Fund has researched the financial needs of our students and has determined that there is $50 million in unmet need at our tribal colleges. To ensure that our people have the skills and education they need to meet the changes of the future, we have committed to raising more funding to be able to double the amount of scholarships that we award to our students.
The Fund is committed to facilitating education for our people in these changing times.
I encourage anyone thinking of an education to pursue that goal. Our leaders knew the importance of education and training, and although the forum is different today, tribal colleges are the institutions that enable students to get a first-rate education, the Indian way.