Some Native American Tribes in Oklahoma will soon be able to afford higher education.
Last Wednesday the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education signed an agreement ensuring more tribal students that were not members of TEDNA, could be covered for scholarships.
The Tribal Education Department National Assembly (TEDNA) is a for-native American nonprofit that tries to build tribal departments’ capacity, and works with other non-profits to share the burden of costs.
Julian Guerrero, Associate Director of TEDNA, said the group wants to increase partnerships in Oklahoma City.
“We’re really happy to see such a strong showing of our partners as we start this new endeavor,” he said. “This state system have had many collaborations and initiatives with many tribal members, and we have for many years, but we see positive impacts with all the students, tribes, institutions, and the communities they serve.”
Dr. Debbie Blake, Vice Chancellor of the State Regents, said the agreement was intended to increase the amount of tribal students who could go to college. She then introduced the President of TEDNA, Dr. Gloria Sly.
“We are a national organization organized in 2003 to work with tribes, and to help them to develop their tribal education departments so they can function as an agency for their tribal members,” Sly said.
Sly says that the mission is to get more Native Americans to graduate, and that by partnering with the State Regents they can accomplish this goal.
Massey emphasized the importance of partnerships with the Native American tribes.
The agreement was approved by the regents, and signed by TEDNA President Gloria Sly and Chairperson John Massey.