Crazy Horse Memorial prepares to welcome Summer 2020 students to The Indian University of North America

Pictured: Students in class at Crazy Horse Memorial’s Indian University of North America.(Photo: Crazy Horse Memorial Foundation)

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22 students confirmed; program begins June 8

News Release

Crazy Horse Memorial Foundation

Crazy Horse Memorial’s Indian University of North America is preparing to welcome students to its summer program once again, with a variety of modifications in place due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. First-year students will participate via remote learning, while upper-level students returning to campus will live, work, and learn under new public-health guidelines. The program begins June 8.

According to Dr. John Little, director of The Indian University of North America, courses for the first-year program will include the mandatory A&S 100 “College Success Strategies,” taught by Megan Red Shirt Shaw; Psychology 101 “General Psychology,” taught by Will Cockrell; and English 101 “Composition 1” and English 191 “Independent Study,” taught by Joshua Rudnik.

“We have 22 students confirmed,” Little said. “It’s been enjoyable to talk with them, and we’re grateful and honored to have their engagement. The pandemic has been so hard on these young people, and while they tell us they’re sad about losing the internships and in-person class experience, they also say they recognize the value of taking these classes and earning college credits during the summer months.”

He also noted that the COVID-19 crisis has had an unexpected silver lining for his team as they help prepare these recent high-school graduates for their post-secondary education. Without prom season and spring sports, accepted students are available, they’re more responsive, and The Indian University of North America’s experienced staff has found new opportunities to encourage and support them.

“We’ve been working hard on our success coaching," Little said. “We had a large number of students participate in our April webinar with the Cobell Scholarship team regarding best practices for scholarship applications, and we’ve had more time to help them, because many organizations extended their deadlines. It’s possible that these kids will be the best prepared group we’ve ever had!”

“Crazy Horse Memorial Foundation will fund 100 percent of tuition, books, faculty salaries, and general operating expenses for the program, which is offered in partnership with the University of South Dakota,” added Dr. Laurie Becvar, Crazy Horse Memorial’s president and chief operating officer.

Also preparing for a return to summer learning are The Indian University of North America’s upper-level students — the young people who completed the first-year program in 2019 and are ready for the next step. Little said six students will be returning to campus, where they will earn three college credits in the classroom and also complete a paid internship.

“They also officially begin the program on June 8, but some will start arriving this month to get moved in and start working,” Little said. “Each student will have his or her own room, and we’re going to be spacing them out in the classroom setting as well.

“They’re excited to come,” he continued. “They’ve been home for a couple of months now, some of them with quite large families, so they’re looking forward to being in the classroom and the workplace.”

Crazy Horse Memorial is reopening to the public on Monday, May 18, with restrictions in place to protect the health of staff and guests; these include physical distancing, sanitizing all hard surfaces, heightened frequency of cleaning, practicing good hygiene, and other necessary protocols. Staff members who must manage the new safety protocols are receiving appropriate training, and upper-level university students serving as interns must adhere to the new protocols as well.

Crazy Horse Memorial Foundation funds the tuition, books, and the majority of food and lodging costs for those accepted into The Indian University of North America’s summer program. Native students who start their college careers with the program also are provided an unconventional level of student support from university success coaches, no matter where the students pursue their degrees.

Surveys have shown that 74 percent of respondents have graduated from their universities and colleges or remain enrolled in their degree programs. College graduates who began their higher-education journey at The Indian University of North America currently work as teachers, counselors, nurses, business professionals, an assistant museum curator, a bank examiner, a law enforcement officer and a dental hygienist.

To learn more about Crazy Horse Memorial, to plan a visit, and for information about making a contribution, call (605) 673-4681 or visit crazyhorsememorial.org. 

To stay up to date on the latest news and events, follow the Crazy Horse Memorial on Facebook (/crazyhorsememorial), Twitter (@crazyhorsemem) and Instagram (@crazyhorsememorial); and follow The Indian University of North America on Facebook (/TheIndianUniversityofNorthAmerica) and Instagram (@IndianUniversityCrazyHorse).

About Crazy Horse Memorial Foundation

The Crazy Horse Memorial Foundation is dedicated to protecting and preserving the culture, tradition, and living heritage of the North American Indians by continuing the progress on the world’s largest sculptural undertaking, the memorial of Lakota leader Crazy Horse; providing educational and cultural programming to encourage harmony and reconciliation among all peoples and nations; acting as a repository for Native American artifacts, arts, and crafts through the Indian Museum of North America and the Native American Educational and Cultural Center; and establishing and operating the Indian University of North America and, when practical, a medical training center for American Indians.

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(Image: Crazy Horse Memorial Foundation)
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