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Tribal Administration Degree Approved for Cheyenne & Arapaho Tribal College
January 8, 2009
The Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribal College (CATC) has received approval to offer its first degree in tribal administration.
The associate of science degree program was recently approved by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education. The CATC is located on the campus of Southwestern Oklahoma State University in Weatherford.
The curriculum for the program was structured to meet the increasing demands in the field of tribal administration in western Oklahoma and nationwide, which is the result of the retirement of older employees in federal agencies that work directly with tribal entities.
The program was designed by CATC and SWOSU personnel, specifically Don Tofpi, CATC faculty member and chair of the Kiowa Nation.
The program was patterned on historical events. Even after the Cheyenne and Arapaho reported to their reservation headquarters on the southern plains of Oklahoma, they still managed their lives under their traditional forms of government, like their grandparents for generations before them. As signatories to five treaties the United States of America had negotiated with them, they remained two distinct and sovereign nations. Today, the Tsistsistas (Cheyenne) and Hinonoei (Arapaho) operate their tribal government under a Constitution ratified April 4, 2006, and continue to enjoy a government-to-government relationship with the United States federal government.
Students in the program will complete general education requirements that teach facts, values, understanding, skills and attitudes. In addition, they will master direct guidelines and content regarding administration issues, which will send a message to employers that that are tribal-related.
Dr. Henrietta Mann, president of the CATC, said it is anticipated that the completion of the tribal administration degree will offer opportunities for those students who wish to prepare themselves to work in the tribal environment. This tribal environment currently is undergoing increased demands for individuals with administrative skills. Some of the objectives of this degree program are:
- To offer an innovative program which meets western Oklahoma and other regions' needs
- To provide employment opportunities for graduates
- To recruit American Indians into a higher-wage quality of life
- To educate quality individuals for a leadership area alleviating a lack of serious
- trained individuals
- To expand the model in which education enhances American Indians toward a
- common goal
"With this notification, we can be assured that our degree offering met the highest academic test in the State of Oklahoma and the Cheyenne and Arapaho deserve to be proud of yet another achievement on their journey of creating and establishing their own tribal institution of higher education," Mann said.
For those interested in pursuing the two-year Associate of Science Degree in tribal administration, call the CATC at (580) 774-3139.