Native American Scholar Aims for Teaching Certificate

In an era abuzz about the teacher shortage and how it is affecting schools across South Dakota, one Native American scholarship recipient aims to make a difference by achieving a teaching certificate in the coming year.

Her name is Charity, and she hopes to soon complete her bachelor’s in Early Childhood Education at Sinte Gleska University. An alum of St. Joseph’s Indian School, Charity is a nine-time recipient of the school’s scholarship, which was started in 1985 to support Native Americans pursuing higher education.

Charity, alumna of St. Joseph’s

Charity is one of 106 Native American scholars nationwide receiving a total of $103,264 in spring-semester funding. The awards bring the total for the school year to a record $233,214. This spring, the school granted awards to 22 St. Joseph’s alums, 11 alum family members and 73 other scholars enrolled in a federally recognized tribe and pursuing higher education.

Charity is approaching 16 years with Crow Creek Headstart in Fort Thompson, S.D., in a career that was sparked just after she graduated from high school.

“I was babysitting for my sister, and I liked childcare, so pretty soon I began working there,” she explained.

While she enjoyed working with preschool children, Charity felt the call to work with kindergarten through third-grade students as teacher. As soon as she completes the degree, she will seek teacher certification.

“Being a parent and doing classes is challenging,” she said, but she attributes her ability to do so to a caring partner who picks up the load and to four loving daughters.

Other St. Joseph’s Indian School alumni on track to complete courses of study this May or June include: Kayla, receiving Bachelor of Science degrees in both American Indian Studies and Sociology from Black Hills State University in Spearfish, S.D.; Tamra receiving an Associate from Mitchell Technical College in the Medical Office Professional Program; Cody receiving an Associate in Tribal Law from Oglala Lakota College; and Tanner graduating from United Tribes Technical College, Bismarck, N.D., with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science and Research.

St. Joseph’s Indian School created the scholarship program to benefit Native American students pursuing higher education. Through the generosity of donors, the school has awarded scholarship dollars to Native Americans for nearly 40 years. Financial need and academic performance are the basis for determining the awards. Applications are due each fall and spring and are awarded based on proof of tribal enrollment, number of applicants and available funds. Also considered are returning scholars who are continuing their education journey.

To read more St. Joseph’s Indian School alumni stories, visit today. 

Author: St. Joseph's Indian School

At St. Joseph's Indian School, our privately-funded programs for Lakota (Sioux) children in need have evolved over 90 years of family partnership, experience and education. Because of generous friends who share tax-deductible donations, Native American youth receive a safe, stable home life; individual counseling and guidance; carefully planned curriculum based on Lakota culture and individual student needs and tools to help build confidence, boost self-esteem and improve cultural awareness. All of this helps children to live a bright, productive, possibility-filled future.

2 thoughts on “Native American Scholar Aims for Teaching Certificate”

  1. I am possibly of partial Native ancestry, on my father’s side.
    I have been living as white all my life, and was only recently made aware of my ancestry by my older sister, who tracks family records. As such, I am sympathetic to the plight of natives in this country.
    I just watched the movie “War Pony”, and it drove home the poverty and hopelessness of reservation life. I want to say, I admire the courage and determination of those who are making efforts to rise above these circumstances.
    I hope my donation, even though small, can be of help to my brothers and sisters.

  2. thank you for sending the lovely dreamcatcher and shopping bags. I’m happy to support you and I will proudly hang the dreamcatcher over my newborn niece’s crib

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