Tribal College & SWOSU Continue Agreement
Southwestern Oklahoma State University and the Cheyenne & Arapaho Tribal College Board of Regents recently signed a cooperative agreement to continue the Cheyenne & Arapaho Tribal College on the Weatherford campus.
Cheyenne & Arapaho Speaker of the House Ida Hoffman, C & A legislator Janice PrairieChief-Boswell and CATC Board of Regents Chair Lawrence Hart recently presented a $458,296 check on behalf of the Cheyenne & Arapaho tribes to SWOSU for the 2007 operations of the college. Accepting for SWOSU were President John Hays and CATC Interim President Henrietta Mann.
The Cheyenne-Arapaho Tribal College (CATC) is a two-year college that is starting its second year on the SWOSU campus. Dr. Radwan Al-Jarrah, dean of the SWOSU College of Arts and Sciences and the cooperative agreement principal director, said the college has an enrollment of 30 full-time and 15 part-time students with most of them being Cheyenne and Arapaho students.
Al-Jarrah said immediate plans for the CATC are to hire a business manager, administrative assistant and to aggressively prepare for accreditation and apply for membership in the American Indian Higher Education Consortium. As an AIHEC member, the CATC will be eligible for federal assistance and capable of competing for federal grants and other educational resources. After AIHEC recognition, the CATC will then seek candidacy status with the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association.
The CATC is a product of extensive planning by the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes of Oklahoma and SWOSU. Once the CATC attains recognition as a fully functional college, it will seek autonomy. When the CATC is accredited, the college will be allowed to manage federal student financial aid programs and its courses will be transferable to accredited four-year degree-granting institutions.
Hays said SWOSU is committed to enhancing diversity and promoting multicultural education. SWOSU is actively working to increase the number of American Indian students enrolled in its programs and is striving to provide greater multicultural opportunities for its students and faculty.
SWOSU started an American Indian studies program in 2005. The program enables students to get an associate degree, minor, an option in the interdisciplinary degree, or certification in American Indian studies. Al-Jarrah said many Native American students have found the interdisciplinary degree at SWOSU to be a popular avenue of earning a bachelor’s degree.
Additional information is available by calling Al-Jarrah at 580.774.7152.