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Wakanyeja Contact


Wakanyeja “Sacred Little Ones”
Early Childhood Education Initiative

Creating Systems of Care and Learning for Native children

Program Contact:

Tarajean Yazzie-Mintz, Ed.D.
Wakanyeja ECE Initiative
American Indian College Fund
8333 Greenwood Blvd.
Denver, CO 80221

Phone: (303) 426-8900

Yazzie-Mintz Bio:

Tarajean Yazzie-Mintz, Ed.D. (Navajo) is the Program Officer directing the Wakanyeja “Sacred Little Ones” Early Childhood Education Initiative at the American Indian College Fund in Denver, Colorado. Yazzie-Mintz began her career in education as an early childhood teacher in Seattle, WA, and continued to contribute to the field of early childhood education through her graduate studies at Arizona State University and Harvard University Graduate School of Education, where she earned her doctorate in education. From 2005 to 2011, Yazzie-Mintz served as a faculty member at the School of Education at Indiana University - Bloomington. As an Assistant Professor of Curriculum Studies she taught in the teacher education program and conducted research in the area of Native teacher knowledge and instructional practice. Under Yazzie-Mintz’s leadership, the tribal college grantees and their community partners receive technical assistance and specialized guidance in conducting systematic inquiry and measurement of early learning program outcomes at four tribal college sites. Yazzie-Mintz has been the recipient of numerous professional awards and honors and four competitive grants and fellowships; has presented at more than 40 scholarly meetings and symposia; and has been published in 22 scholarly publications focusing on education.