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NOC celebrates 

Native American Heritage Month

NOC is celebrating Native American Heritage Month with a number of activities planned for the month of November. The month kicked off Thursday at the Cultural Engagement Center with a demonstration of a “Dice Game,” a traditional game played by the Osage Tribe. A story explaining the “Dice Game” is below.

Activities this week include a Scavenger Hunt that begins Monday at 10 a.m. at the CEC. Gift cards will be awarded to students, five turkeys will be awarded to faculty and staff. 

NOC will be celebrating National Indian Heritage Month during November. “We are very excited about celebrating National Indian Heritage Month,” said sponsor Gina Cooneywerdy. “We invite everyone to participate in our activities this month.”

Special Activities

Nov. 6 -- Scavenger Hunt Contest
(Pick up instructions after 10 a.m. at the Cultural Engagement Center).
Ask for Denver Wahwassuck.
Hunt ends Nov. 8 at noon.
Student winners receive the following:
First - $25 Bookstore Gift Card
Second - $15 Bookstore Gift Card
Third – Club T-Shirt
Five Faculty/Staff will win a free turkey.

Nov. 9 – Tribal Government Education Session.
The guest speaker is Dawna Hare at the Cultural Engagement Center from noon – 1 p.m.

Nov. 13 -- Stickball demonstrated by Jake Roberts on the Lawn west of Central Hall at 11 a.m.

Nov. 14 – Rock Your Mocs Day, wear favorite moccasins or leggings.

Nov. 21 – Free Fry Bread, 10:30 a.m. at the Clock Tower while supplies last.

Nov. 29 -- Standing Bear Story, presented by T.L. Walker at the Cultural Engagement Center, 10 a.m.

All Month Activities

Native American Factoids on KAYE The Source FM Radio 90.7.

Native American Regalia Display at Cultural Engagement Center.

Native American Music across NOC Tonkawa
Tuesdays and Thursdays noon – 1:30 p.m.

Native American Storytelling by Northern
Thunder Club at Tonkawa Schools.

All events are free and open to the public.

by Scott Cloud, NOC's What's Happening, November 3, 2017

Dawna Hare discusses Native American education history

Dawna Hare gave a lecture Thursday at the Cultural Engagement Center on Thursday on Tribal Governement Education. The lecture is part of Native American Heritage Month. Pictured (L-R): Ted Moore, Dawna Hare, Anna Scott, Eugene Smith.As part of Native American Heritage Month, Dawna Hare gave a lecture on Wednesday regarding Tribal Government Education at the Cultural Engagement Center. In explaining the history of Tribal Government Education, are explained the United States government’s affairs with Native Americans began as part of the War Department in 1824. As Native Americans were moved from their native lands to reservations, the United States Government created boarding schools where students were relocated from their homes. According to Hare the purpose for the boarding schools were to not only educate the Indian youth but also to, “assimilate them into United States society.” She said they were not allowed to speak their native language, wear native dress or wear their hair in traditional ways. According to Hare, the most famous of the boarding schools was Carlisle in Pennsylvania. 

Hare detailed two advocates who worked for Native American education in the 20th century. Hare said some changes were made in the 1930s when John Collyar headed the Indian Affairs Department for the United States government. She said Collyar initiated the Johnson O’Malley Program and other programs to assist Native Americans. The second was LaDonna Harris. Hare explained that Oklahoma Sen. Fred Harris and his wife LaDonna (a member of the Comanche Tribe) worked for programs to assist Native American education. Indian 101, The Indian Education Act and Indian Self-Determination Act were adopted in the 1970s continuing the process. She said that NOC began a partnership with the Pawnee Nation in 2002. The Pawnee Nation also has a partnership with Bacone University in Muskogee. “Our goal is for those that continue their education come back and help their tribes,” Hare said. 

In describing the history of Native American education Hare said that three American universities (Harvard, Dartmouth, and William & Mary) each provided education programs for Native Americans in the 1700s but the Hare is a member of the Pawnee Business Council. She is also an adjunct instructor at Oklahoma State University and an advisor for the Native American Student Association. She added that many tribes are the economic engines in their respective counties.

by Scott Cloud, "What's Happening" November 10, 2017

Miss Oklahoma speaks to students at Cultural Engagement Center

Miss Oklahoma 2017 - Triana BrowneMiss Oklahoma Triana Browne spoke to approximately 30 students regarding “Bridging Cultural Diversity One Step at a Time” at the Cultural Engagement Center on Thursday. The speech and reception were sponsored by the Native American-Serving Non-tribal Institutions grant* and the Northern Thunder Club. Club members presented Browne with a jacket after her speech. Browne, 24, was named Miss OSU while a student at Oklahoma State University. She was then later named Miss Oklahoma City before being named Miss Oklahoma. As Miss Oklahoma she represented Oklahoma in the Miss America Pageant in September. Browne who is part Chickasaw and African American, told students about racial prejudice she faced as a young child. “It was never an issue in my family,” she said.“But it was to others.” She spoke of being an 8-year old where she was teased about her race. “Even at a young age I realized that I was alone,”she said. “I was a victim of bullying to the point that I was depressed and suicidal. That is a terrible thing to experience. I didn’t look like anyone else and it was hard to deal with but I chose not to take a side.” She added she was a victim of racial bias at OSU. “I was going to track practice one day and someone yelled at me saying, ‘go back where you came from.’” She said. “I wasn’t sure exactly what they meant,” Browne said with a chuckle. “Where would I go, Africa or Tulsa? It was sad to think that in today’s time someone would say that but that is the world we live in.” “That’s why my platform is about bridging those cultural gaps by having uncomfortable conversations because they are uncomfortable,” she said. “As uncomfortable as they are we need Triana Browne Miss Oklahoma speaks to students at Cultural Engagement Center to have them.” She said the key to uncomfortable conversations is not to be angry. “We are an angry society,” she said. “But we have to remain calm and not allow our emotions to get the best of us. We can be passionate without being all about emotions.” Browne said she ran track at OSU and became involved in pageants to help her mother financially. “There were scholarships available if you won the pageant,” she said. “My mother was having a difficult time paying for my school so I saw it as a way to help her out. It’s worked out well in so many ways.” Browne said she has many options for the future one is a possibility of working with NIKE as a spokesperson for the Chickasaws. She said she may attempt to qualify for the Heptathlon at the 2020 Olympics. Browne competed in the Heptathlon (seven individual events combined into one competition) at Oklahoma State. Browne was in Tonkawa for the Miss NOC Enid and Miss NOC Tonkawa Pageants held Thursday night at the KPAC.


Cloud, S. (2017, October 27). Miss Oklahoma speaks to students at Cultural Engagement 
Center. Retrieved on November 1, 2017

*editted by B. Hinesley-Chambers

Indian Dice Game exhibition held

NOC kicked off Native American Heritage Week Thursday with an Indian Dice Game exhibition at the Cultural Engagement Center. The demonstration was presented by NOC student Denver Wahwassuck. Wahwassuck explained the origin of the Indian Dice Game as a game played sitting around a camp fire or at a feast. 

The game is played with pieces of deer bone made into two sided round pieces creating a heads and a tails for each piece. There are two different animal types represented in the bowl. One animal type has two pieces while the other has six. The pieces are placed in a wooden bowl, the bowl is shaken and the pieces are flipped in the bowl. The number of dice that land on the head (or tails) determines the number of points awarded. There are special rules for when all the pieces land on a head or tail or when pieces are flipped out of the bowl. Up to four players attempt to be the first player to 15 points. 

Wahwassuck said that games normally last 15 minutes. The pieces Wahwassuck displayed Thursday were created in the 1930s by Wahwassuck’s grandmother. She said the game was played by the Osage Indians, known as “Wahzhazhi.”

by Scott Cloud, NOC's What's Happening, November 3, 2017

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