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Cultural Sensitivity

This last March at the Sioux City Museum our Dakota Center of Excellence, led by Wyatt Thomas, brought forth training for partners, program managers, staff, and area leaders on perspectives to consider when servicing and assisting Native people. These two day training sessions are of astonishing value for understandings to happen for many unaware of the challenges faced by Native people. Many of the speakers came from all around Indian country to help our communities. Rick Thomas and Gene Thin Elk provided great insight on trauma and the effects of trauma. The NICC wishes to thanks all our presenters from this year’s cultural sensitivity training for their gift of knowledge for our participants. The college has two of the lectures recorded and available for community use through our public libraries located in Santee and Macy campuses. If you would like to purchase a DVD copy for your program, managers, or individual use they can be obtained through a donation of $20.00 for the continuation of these types of events. For orders or more information please contact us here at info@thenicc.edu.edu. 



Preparing for AIHEC

NICC students are preparing for the 31st Annual American Indian Higher Education Consortium Conference Knowledge Bowl Competition on March 25-28 in Rapid City, South Dakota. Questions will be derived from the following sources: 1. He Sapa Woihanble- Lanniko Lee et.al 2. New Indians, Old Wars – Elizabeth Cook-Lynn 3. First American Art: The Charles and Valerie Diker Collection of American Indian Art- Bruce Bernstein et.al. 4. American Indians and the Fight for Equal Voting Rights- Laughlin McDonald 5. Mitsitam Café Cookbook: Recipes from the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian- Richard Hetzler 6. Where the Lightning Strikes: The Lives of American Indian Sacred Places- Peter Nabokov 7. Tradition and Culture in the Millennium: Tribal Colleges and Universities- Linda Sue Warner et.al. FILM Reel Injun: On the Trail of the Hollywood Indian-Neil Diamond. Check us out! Both the libraries at NICC, Macy Campus and Santee Campus, are willing and able to help you find a book, proofread a college paper, or find something online. The library is currently being automated with Follett Destiny software to find what you need right away and to keep track of your checkouts. A suggestion for a good read would be The Boy in the Suitcase by Lene Kaaberbol and Agnete Friis. The main character, Nina Borg, volunteers to do a favor for a friend and finds herself with a suitcase that has a three-year-old boy inside. Who is he? Where does he belong? Who stole him? Why? Don’t forget the libraries are not just for college students, they are also community libraries. Come on in and see what we have to offer! 

Moccasin Tracks to Follow


Tashina Denney grew up in the rural Santee Niobrara school area and went to Niobrara school. Because of a lack of day care facilities at the Niobrara School system, Tashina transferred to the Santee High School in her sophomore year. By the age of eighteen, Tashina was a mother of three children and a college student at the NICC. Today, Tashina is finalizing her General Liberal Arts degree at the NICC, and she has taken a path, by following her interest in children, to acquire a double major seeking her Bachelors’ Degree in Early Childhood Education and Special Education with one of our many partners, the University of Nebraska-Kearney. In spite of all these classroom activities and because she has enough qualifying credits, Tashina has positioned herself as an instructor for Santee Nation Head Start for the 3 year old classroom. If this was not enough, Tashina also works at Ohiya Casino on the weekends. Making and giving balance to a schedule that can accommodate all these activities is truly remarkable and if you ask Tashina what drives her, she will simply say “to provide more for my children.” I asked Tashina what advice she would give to other students and she told me, “Prioritize your life. For me, education comes first, because I will always be able to fall back on this and it paves a future for my children. I take my homework everywhere I go, for instance basketball activities, work at the casino, and the day care, because they support my efforts as a student, when it is appropriate.” 

Jeremie Key graduated from the NICC in 2007 with a double major in business and natural resources. He now works for the Santee Sioux Nation Office for Environmental Protection. This program provides the Santee Sioux Nation with resources to address the Nation’s environmental concerns. Jeremie was mentored by one of his instructors, Hank Miller, who urged him to write for scholarships and applying to other supporting organizations to assist with his capacity to attend college ,and these efforts helped Jeremie pay for things such as gas. His journey at the NICC established skills and talents that not only resulted in a career but also helped him even develop his own position from taking our grant writing classes. Think of this for a second; by using what he had learned through our grant writing, natural resources, and business classes Jeremie wrote a grant that funded his own position for next year so he could then provide resources to the Santee Nation to address issues that he and others are directly interested in. WOW! The NICC wishes to take this time to congratulate these two role models and the many others for their work in the community and for following their dreams, as these are truly moccasin tracks to follow. Get your moccasins on at the NICC, see your AAR staff advisor so your path follows your dreams.