Thought that this article was interesting and might spark a conversation.   Steve Russell 3/5/14 This was to be a weekend of data entry for my income taxes. TurboTax wants to triple what they charge to file Schedules C and D, and I have to either pay up or enter a lot of stuff for myself the first year that any of the programs will do for you in subsequent years. I got interrupted when a big envelope showed up at my door. From the return address, I quickly figured out what was inside and was ripping it open like my five-year-old twin grandkids didRead More →

The contest is designed to encourage young Native American writers to explore their heritage. It is open to Native American high school students from all Native communities. For 2014, students are being asked to write about one or more of the cultural images, symbols or art forms that have been historically developed by their community (American Indian, Alaska Native or Native Hawaiian) to communicate a particular message or value or serve a specific purpose. Essays are to be 1,200 words or less and should cover the following: Describe the image(s), symbol(s) or art forms selected; Explain how it was originally developed or used by theRead More →

By Dr. Yvette Roubideaux, Acting Director, Indian Health Service Posted August 22, 2013 I get questions all the time from American Indians and Alaska Natives (including my own relatives!) wondering why they should care about the Affordable Care Act since they already are eligible for the Indian Health Service (IHS). My response is that while the IHS is here to stay and will be available as their healthcare system, the Affordable Care Act brings new options for health coverage. It is another way that the federal government meets its responsibility to provide health care for American Indians and Alaska Natives. The purpose of the Affordable CareRead More →

The potential impacts of Internet gaming legalization was a major topic at last month’s National Indian Gaming Association (NIGA) convention. Another critical topic, not surprisingly, was economic diversification and Tribes’ ability to pursue and manage the process of planning for change. Legalization of online gaming is gaining traction; a few states already have passed legislation allowing it. Should this trend continue, it has been estimated that Indian gaming revenues could take a hit of up to 25 percent. This would be disastrous for many Tribal communities whose economies are built upon gaming revenue as their sole economic pillar. If there is a bright side toRead More →

The editors ofWinds of Changemagazine, a quarterly production by the American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES), recently released their first list of “The Top 50 Best STEM Workplaces” that offer supportive and stimulating environments for diverse cultures—particularly American Indians and Alaska Natives. “Our methodology was pretty straightforward,” Karen English,Winds of Changeeditor, told Indian Country today Media Network. “We surveyed companies we know recruit Native Americans. The main goal is to help our readers identify workplaces that appreciate their sophisticated STEM [science, technology, engineering and math] skills and unique sensibilities as Native Americans that they can contribute.” Winds of Changestaff honed in on companies thatRead More →

When Traditional Culture Meets High-Tech Construction, The People Can Qayaq Forward More than 10,000 years ago, Eskimos constructed the first kayaks from stitched seal and other animal skins by stretching them across a wood or whalebone-skeleton frame. Called skin boats, they used them to hunt on the inland lakes, rivers and coastal waters of the Arctic Ocean, North Atlantic Ocean, Bering Sea and North Pacific Ocean. Today, kayaking is one of the fastest growing sports in North America, with nearly 8 million active participants in the U.S. alone, up from 3.5 million just 10 years ago, according to theNational Sporting Goods Association. With its risingRead More →

The miniature student-made cars raced at a recent science camp might lose wheels or engine power, but they were nudged across a makeshift finish line with a little help from the students and their friends. In some ways, a similar process applied to the students themselves. Despite fears and concerns, they learned they could overcome obstacles with a little help from their friends and mentors—in this case, at the 2013 Native American STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) Institute, funded by the National Academy of Engineering. The solar-powered race cars were only one project for the 30-plus middle school students from various tribes who cameRead More →

Following the July 30 story about Sam Simon, co-creator (with Matt Groening) ofThe Simpsonswho has terminal cancer, looking to donate all of his money to charity Indian Country Today Media Network decided to take a closer look at some philanthropic work within Indian country. RELATED:Where Will ‘Simpsons’ Creator Sam Simon’s Money Go? The first decade of this century saw a marked falloff in philanthropy to American Indians. And the story of this decade may be two steps forward, one step back. A study of philanthropy to Natives in the years between 2000 and 2009 by The Foundation Center and Native Americans in Philanthropy saw aRead More →

At its annual Public School Appreciation Day on April 12, the Cherokee Nation awarded checks totaling $3.2 million to 92 school districts in northeastern Oklahoma. The badly needed funding will benefit nearly 24,000 students within the tribe’s 14-county jurisdiction area. Each year, the tribe allocates 38 percent of its tax revenues from tribal car tags to area schools. The unrestricted grants, totaling almost $30 million since 2002, are awarded on a per-student basis and come with “no strings attached,” according to Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker. “I believe the superintendents know best what the needs of their districts are,” said Baker. “We areRead More →

The Native student population at the University of Montana has more than doubled in the last decade, a trend that has prompted university officials to seek a more diverse faculty. When David Beck, chairman of the Native American Studies program, arrived at the Missoula campus in the year 2000, about 300 Native students were enrolled, he said. That population has increased to about 800, withNative studentsenrolled in 88 different programs. The increase more closely aligns the university with the demographics of Montana, home to 12 recognized tribes and seven reservations, and where about 10 percent of the total population reports American Indian heritage. “As theRead More →