601 East College Drive
P.O. Box 270
Winnebago, NE 68071
Mission, Vision, Educational Philosophy
Little Priest Tribal College (LPTC) is established as the educational institution by the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska to fulfill the goal of its namesake, Chief Little Priest, to “be strong and educate my children.”
In the Winnebago heritage of respect, integrity and self-reliance, Little Priest Tribal College is chartered by the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska to provide higher education opportunities. The college prepares its students to succeed in a multicultural world by emphasizing quality education of the highest level, humanistic values, and life skills.
LPTC endeavors to prepare students for transfer to a four-year institution. The college also provides language and culture classes and training opportunities for upgrading job skills and improving employability.
The American Indian Satellite Community College, founded in 1972, provided tribally-controlled post-secondary education to members of three Nebraska tribes, the Winnebago, the Omaha, and the Santee Sioux. The college later changed its name to Nebraska Indian Community College (NICC). In 1996, Little Priest Tribal College officially separated from NICC after Winnebago leaders sought to develop a more culturally-specific institution for their community. The Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska chartered LPTC in May 1996.
The college became a land-grant institution in June 1998, and received accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools later that year. The HLC bestowed 10-year accreditation to LPTC in 2003.
Geographic Features and Challenges
LPTC is located in Winnebago, Nebraska on the Winnebago Reservation, 19 miles south of Sioux City, Iowa, and 80 miles north of Omaha, Nebraska. The college serves an enrollment drawn primarily from throughout the 113,000-acre reservation bordered on the east by the Missouri River and on the north by the border with Iowa.
Approximately, 1,200 Winnebago tribal members reside on the reservation. Forty percent of the reservation’s population is under the age of 19. Demographic modeling indicates the reservation population will increase to 5,050 by year 2040. As the population grows, so will the need for increased resources necessary for LPTC to educate an increasing number of Winnebago students.
Academics and Students
LPTC offers associates’ of arts degrees in Indian studies, early childhood education, liberal arts, and teacher education. It also offers associates’ of science degrees in the following areas: business, computer information systems, indigenous science with a health emphasis, and indigenous science with an environmental emphasis. Students may also enroll in the college’s computer information systems certificate program.
LPTC signed the Nebraska Transfer Initiative, an agreement with four-year Nebraska institutions to accept the common core of general education courses. LPTC employs six full-time faculty members and many more adjunct faculty, staff and administrators to serve its students.
Fifty-seven percent of LPTC’s student body attends college full-time. Females comprise 68 percent of the student population, and American Indians account for 95 percent of all enrolled students. The student body further reflects the reservation’s young population; half of all students are 24 years old or younger.
Between 2006 and 2010, LPTC experienced consistent growth in its enrollment numbers, from 95 students enrolling in 2006 to 148 enrolling in the fall 2010. LPTC conferred eight associate’s degrees in both 2006 and 2010. LPTC graduated its largest class in spring 2011.
Other Outstanding Accomplishments
The community’s perspective of LPTC grew increasingly more positive in recent years as the college prioritized outreach efforts and raised its visibility throughout the reservation. These efforts included soliciting community input on an institution needs assessment, recruitment outreach to the reservation’s high schools, partnering with tribal media to publicize LPTC’s news and events, and hosting its first annual powwow.