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Success Stories

  • Marjeanna Marjeanna
    After a divorce and a layoff from her defense-contracting job in Ft. Worth, Texas, Marjeanna (Comanche) decided to seek a college education to provide a better life for her two children. But after an illness, she had to postpone her dream of an education for seven years.
  • Maxine  Maxine
    Gros Ventre
    Maxine (Gros Ventre) suffered a devastating loss when her son, a deputy, was murdered in the line of duty at the Fort Belknap reservation. She felt responsible because she had brought her son to the reservation from the city “because Fort Belknap was supposed to be a safe haven, it was our reservation.”
  • Melinda Melinda
    San Carlos Apache
    Insects are not high on many people's list of loves, but Melinda happens to love them. She graduated from Haskell Indian Nations University in Lawrence, Kansas and earned a master's degree from Purdue University. A member of the San Carlos Apache tribe from Albuquerque, New Mexico, Melinda says what really “bugs” her is that if it was not for the American Indian College Fund, she would have been unable to complete her education studying the creatures that give most of us the shivers.
  • Michael  Michael
    At eight months old, Michael (Assiniboine), was removed from his mother's home and cared for by a foster family, which later adopted him. His adoptive family noticed there was something wrong with his hearing. He was diagnosed as hearing-impaired. At 2 ½ he could finally hear with the help of hearing aids. Michael attended the Montana School for Deaf and Blind for 12 years. Students there were told they could succeed in any career they chose—the only difference was their chosen method of communication.
  • Nora Nora
    Sicangu Lakota
    Nora Antoine, a Ph.D. Leadership and Change student at Antioch University and a 2013 Mellon Faculty Enhancement Doctoral fellow, has upcoming dissertation work focused on engagement of full-time faculty to explore professional relationships among TCU faculty.
  • Quinn Quinn
    Quinn is deeply involved in her reservation community on the Northern Cheyenne Reservation, with a large extended and immediate family rooted there. She lives on 11 acres of land with her parents and five siblings, which is also inhabited by a variety of animals. In addition to her connection to the land and its creatures, Quinn is involved in traditional aspects of her culture, including making traditional bead work and traditional clothing for her family
  • Randy Randy
    Randy received the prestigious Cartwright Scholarship from the American Indian College Fund and graduated from Northwest Indian College with honors. He also served on a national student congress for American Indians. A member of the Tulalip nation, Randy is fascinated by legal and business issues, and plans to study law to become a tribal lawyer specializing in fishing rights.
  • Richard Richard
    Oglala Lakota
    Richard started his college career by leaving the Pine Ridge Reservation for Phoenix, Arizona, where he says his experience at a technical college gave him confidence and made him more independent and knowledgeable. Richard went on to earn two associate’s degrees at United Tribes Technical College, where he graduated with honors. He was also the first and still the only individual to get ASE student certified right out of college.
  • Robert Robert
    Robert knew he had to turn his life around. Graduating from Little Big Horn College made it possible for him to help himself and others in his tribe as a licensed addition counselor. Robert works in Crow Agency, Montana, where he incorporates his own experiences with alcoholism and his education and training at his job in the wellness center there to help others fight the disease that plagues many Indian communities
  • Russell Russell
    St. Croix Chippewa Indians of Wisconsin
    Russell has earned a bachelor’s of science degree in criminal justice from Minot State University, a master’s degree in management from the University of Mary, and began his journey at UTTC. (He later earned his Ph.D. through the Mellon Foundation Faculty Career Enhancement (Doctoral) Fellowship). He credits his tribal leaders, family and friends for their support as he made a geographical change in his life to be among other Indian people.

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