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Success Stories

Below are profiles of some of the students who have benefited from the support the American Indian College Fund has provided. If you are a student or alumnus who would like to share your success story, please click here to submit your information.


  • Alli
    Cheyenne River Lakota Nation
    Alli is in her third year at the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA), pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Indigenous liberal studies (ILS) and a certificate in business and entrepreneurship. She chose to attend IAIA because they offered courses infused with indigenous perspectives.
  • Brennan
    Brennan (Menominee) is a first-generation college student studying biological and physical sciences at the College of Menominee Nation.
  • Brett
    Standing Rock Sioux
    Brett, a decorated Veteran, is putting his values of service and hard work to the test at United Tribes Technical College, where he is studying to earn a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice.
  • Dahkota
    Wilton Rancheria
    Dahkota Kicking Bear Brown: One of Our #ReasonsforHope
  • Dan
    White Earth
    Dan decided to channel his aspirations for success to help his people. He became the first person in his family to go to college.
  • Demetria
    A defining symbol of success for Demetria is not in the paycheck or the praise, but in the sense of accomplishment. Indeed, she has already done a lot for her family, peers, and community. "I’m doing it," she says, "and I’m trying my hardest."
  • Diana
    Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate
    Diana Canku (Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate), president of Sisseton Wahpeton College and a 2009-10 academic year fellow in the American Indian College Fund’s Andrew W. Mellon Career Enhancement Program, successfully defended her dissertation and completed her doctorate degree.
  • Dr. Harriett Skye
    Dr. Harriett Skye
    Lakota, Standing Rock
    Dr. Harriett Skye (Lakota, Standing Rock) achieved a lot in her lifetime before retiring from United Tribes Technical College. In addition to her many accomplishments, she earned a Ph.D. in ethnic studies (emphasis on Native American Studies) and directed a documentary film, “The Right to Be,” an autobiographical story about her journey as an American Indian woman on the pathway of self-awareness and higher education. The film was screened at the Sundance Film Festival in 1994.
  • Dwight
    When Dwight was spending time as a young boy with his grandmother, he was set on a path that would lead him right to his future. He just didn’t know it at the time. Dwight grew up on the Navajo reservation in New Mexico, in a place he says was so small that it is not down on any map. Sage and uninterrupted stretches of red rock mark this part of the desert southwest known for its remoteness and beauty.
  • Erika
    Erika is an enrolled member of the Chippewa-Cree tribe in Rocky Boy, Montana who grew up caring for a younger brother and sister while her mother worked. “My mom, siblings, and I moved around a lot because my mom was constantly looking for employment,” she says. “It was very hard for us financially and there was only enough money to pay for basic necessities such as rent, food, and utilities… Some months we had to depend on my grandparents to help us out.”