News Release

Morris K. Udall and Stewart L. Udall Foundation

The Morris K. Udall and Stewart L. Udall Foundation (Udall Foundation) and the Native Nations Institute (NNI) at The University of Arizona are pleased to announce the selection of the 2021 Native American Congressional Interns. The program’s newest class of Udall Interns comprises five students representing five tribes and five universities from around the country. The Udall Interns were selected by an independent review committee on the basis of academic achievement, leadership, and demonstrated commitment to careers in Tribal public policy.

The Udall Foundation’s Native American Congressional Internship Program, funded and comanaged by NNI, provides Native American and Alaska Native undergraduate, graduate, and law students with the opportunity to gain practical experience with the Federal legislative process in order to understand firsthand the government-to-government relationship between tribes and the Federal Government. From 1996 through 2020, 290 students from 129 tribes have participated in the program.

The 2021 Udall Interns are:

  • Michael Cervantes, Penelakut Tribe, University of Washington.
  • John Crawford, Forest County Potawatomi, Yale University.
  • Login Hibbs, Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, University of Oklahoma.
  • Bailey Stephens-Johns, Muscogee (Creek) Nation, Tulsa Community College.
  • Benjamin Yawakie, Pueblo of Zuni, University of Minnesota.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2021 summer program will be a primarily virtual nine-week internship experience. While the 2021 Internship may look different from prior years, Interns will work virtually in congressional and Federal agency offices where they have opportunities to research legislative issues important to Tribal communities, experience an insider's view of the Federal Government, and enhance their understanding of nation building and Tribal self-governance. In order to accommodate the unique circumstances related to the COVID-19 pandemic, the class of 2021 Udall Interns will have the option to participate in the 2022 program.

In addition, the 2020 Udall Interns have been offered spots in the 2021 program because of the cancelled 2020 program. The 2020 Udall Interns participating in the 2021 summer virtual program are:

  • Janae A. Harris, Arapahoe Tribe of the Wind River Reservation, Dartmouth College.
  • Imani M. Hicks, Pechanga Band of Luiseno Mission Indians of the Pechanga Reservation, Duke University.
  • Womsikuk James, Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah) of Massachusetts, Dartmouth College.
  • Alayah C. Johnson-Jennings, Quapaw Tribe of Indians, Dartmouth College.
  • Stephanie M. Lefthand, Pueblo of Taos, Baylor University.
  • Kenadi R. Mayo, Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior, University of Wisconsin-Madison.
  • Erika A. Salinas, Comanche Nation, University of Southern California.
  • Tyra M. West, Navajo Nation, Ohio Valley University.

Learn more about the Congressional Internship Program and meet the 2021 Udall Interns.

The Udall Internship honors the legacies of Morris K. Udall and Stewart L. Udall, whose careers had a significant impact on Native American self-governance and health care as well as the stewardship of public lands and natural resources.

For additional information about the Native Nations Institute and the Udall Internship program, please contact Mona Nozhackum at nozhackum@arizona.edu

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