Native Youth Crisis Line- This is a 24hour hotline and it also is connected to a battered women’s shelter. Please circulate to anyone working with Native Youth! I did a screen shot of this website where I found the number. The website is: www.save.org/americanindian .
Useful College Information
from a professional student!
Some schools and scholarships require either a CIB or Tribal Membership Card. These are two separate but related things, the CIB is issued by the federal government and indicates your blood quantum. The Tribal Membership Card is from your Tribe and indicates that you are a citizen/member of a federally recognized tribe. Sometimes there is a blood quantum requirement OR tribal membership requirement. Tribal membership generally trumps the CIB, I personally think it is the more important of the two.
1. Do you have a CIB card? That is issued by the BIA. You have to contact the Alaska office to get one if you don't have yours yet.
BIA Alaska Regional Office (Anchorage)
3601 C Street, Suite 1100
Anchorage, AK 99503-5947
Please note: You can fax the BIA only to request forms. Completed CIB forms require original signatures, so completed forms will NOT be accepted via fax. Fill out your forms and then mail them to the appropriate office.
2. Do you belong to a tribe? You may be eligible for membership of more than one. Generally, children under 18 can apply for membership to two tribes. This is important and different than the CIB. Contact the Ouzinkie Tribal Council and/or Tanana Chiefs Conference (http://www.tananachiefs.org/tribal-development/tribal-enrollment/) and get that process started ASAP.
3. An important consideration -- healthcare! Student health fees can be $2000 a year or more, so availability of an IHS clinic has always been important for me. If there is an IHS clinic nearby you can ask for a waiver of student health insurance/fees. https://www.ihs.gov/findhealthcare/
4. When I was trying to figure out the costs of different schools, I looked at more than just tuition and scholarships. Each school has an estimated cost of attendance (available through Financial Aid offices, should be online), which takes into account the local cost of living. Build a spreadsheet of each school and list all of the elements of the estimated cost of attendance and subtract out the scholarships. When I did this, the most expensive school (Johns Hopkins) was the most affordable! If you need help doing this let me know, I'm into this kind of thing.
5. I don't think my first email emphasized how awesome the Gates Millennium Scholarship is. If you get this scholarship, it pays for EVERYTHING throughout your entire college career -- undergraduate, graduate, professional, whatever! It will fund you if you want to study at Oxford. It will fund you if you want to study in Alaska. You have to apply for this!!
6. Keep copies of all your applications, both for school and for scholarships. Build a portfolio of materials, that is, an original transcript you can copy, recommendation letters, a generic personal statement that you can quickly customize (each has requirements, like 1 or 2 pages, answer this question, etc.). If you don't have any interesting things or volunteer experience yet, do something. Even volunteering at a soup kitchen once a week makes for something interesting to stand out. Or come back to Alaska in the summer and go to a culture camp (most regions have one). Or when you are in Washington see if one of the local tribes has a summer program that you can join (Jamestown S'Klallam had one and I'm sure the others do too). Make sure to include this info in your portfolio!
7. Most scholarship apps are due around this time of year, make a habit of looking for scholarships and applying for them. I consider it a part time job and spend time regularly on it. It pays off! Sites like fastweb are great too. When you take your SAT or ACT, they will ask if you want to be contacted by potential schools -- say yes! If a school sees your profile and wants you, they will send you a card waiving the application fee.