New Branch of Spokane Tribal College Opened Oct. 1
at Gonzaga University’s Schoenberg Conference Center
Renowned Native American educators Gregory Cajete (pronounced Ka-het-ay), Ph.D., and Leroy Little Bear, J.D., will visit Spokane this Friday and Saturday, Oct. 5-6, to run two workshops on indigenous teaching and learning styles.
The public events are sponsored by Gonzaga University's office of intercultural relations, and are designed to help educators learn more about connecting with Native American students, said Wendy Thompson, Indian education specialist at Gonzaga.
The educators’ visit roughly coincides with the opening of a new branch of the Spokane Tribal College at Gonzaga’s Schoenberg Conference Center (the former Museum of Native American Culture MONAC), located at 800 N. Pearl St. Classes started Monday, Oct. 1 and already seven students are enrolled. An opening celebration is set for 10 a.m.-noon, Friday, Oct. 12. Tribal and educational communities are welcome to attend and learn more about the programs and services of Spokane Tribal College, which originally was a branch campus of Salish Kootenai College ( Pablo, Mont.). In January 2006 it became independent to pursue its own accreditation, but remains affiliated with Salish Kootenai College.
This Friday, Oct. 5, Cajete will discuss “Vision for Indigenous Education in a 21 st Century World: Implications for Curriculum Development and Design in Higher Education” from 3-4:30 p.m. in the Foley Center Teleconference Room.
Cajete and Little Bear also will direct a workshop titled, “Dialogues in Indigenous Knowledge: Weightless Learning in a Gravity-Free Environment,” from 9 a.m.-1 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 6, at the Retreat of the Immaculate Heart, south of Spokane. Continental breakfast and lunch will be provided at no cost to participants. Pre-registration is required; to register call Wendy Thompson or Ann Price at (509) 323-3667.
Cajete, a member of the Santa Clara Pueblo Tewa Indian Tribe, earned his doctorate from International College in Los Angeles. He is the author of “Look to the Mountain: An Ecology of Indigenous Education” and “Ignite the Sparkle: An Indigenous Science Education Curriculum Model,” among other texts. Also, he has edited and authored several other books and articles. A professor at the University of New Mexico, he and Little Bear recently co-authored “Native Science: Natural Laws of Interdependence.”
Little Bear, who earned a law degree from the University of Utah, was a founding member of the Native American studies department at the University of Lethbridge, ( British Columbia). After retiring, Little Bear served as director of Harvard University’s Native American program. He is a professor emeritus of the University of Lethbridge, and is recipient of the National Aboriginal Achievement Award for Education. One of his articles, titled “A Concept of Native Title,” was cited in a Canadian Supreme Court decision.
For more information, contact Thompson at (509) 323-5544 or via e-mail.