Western Shoshone Scholarship Foundation celebrates 2019 grads | FirstNationsFocus.com

Western Shoshone Scholarship Foundation celebrates 2019 grads

Special to First Nation’s Focus
The Western Shoshone Scholarship Foundation and Barrick Gold honored 2019 NAtive college graduates, while featuring Idaho State Representative Paulette Jordan as a keynote speaker, on May 31.
Courtesy WSSF

The Western Shoshone Scholarship Foundation (WSSF) and Barrick hosted its annual Graduate Reception on May 31 honoring 2019 college graduates at the Red Lion Casino and Conference Center.

Barrick signed collaborative agreements with the Tribal and Band Councils of the Western Shoshone in 2008, establishing the WSSF and outlining Barrick’s commitment to longterm higher education funding for tribal members.

Since its inaugural year, the Foundation has funded more than 1,600 higher education scholarships for Western Shoshone tribal members totaling more than $3,492,000.00. In 2019, the WSSF recognized more than 30 Western Shoshone college graduates.

“The WSSF scholarship program is an example of how we are investing in education to develop future workforce — not just for Barrick but for our community and our state. It was an honor to celebrate the 2019 graduates and induct them into the WSSF Alumni Association,” said Joseph Mike Native American Affairs Specialist for Barrick.

During the reception, Barrick recognized 2019 graduates, highlighted Western Shoshone culture and featured keynote speaker Idaho State Representative Paulette Jordan. The event also demonstrated sustainability to the relationship between scholarship recipients, the Foundation and Barrick.

“Our goal is to provide long-term and sustainable access to higher education for our Western Shoshone youth. We appreciate Barrick’s additional 10-year commitment. Education is the key to a strong future for our Western Shoshone and Northern Nevada communities,” said Alice Tybo, Vice President of the Western Shoshone Scholarship Foundation Board.

On June 1, the WSSF Alumni Association hosted the Alumni Professional Development Conference at the Red Lion Casino and Conference Center. The Conference featured networking opportunities, presentations on Time Management, Financial Literacy, Preparing for Employment and Interviews, and highlighted the purpose and vision of the WSSF Alumni Association.

“Anytime we can bring our WSSF Alumni together, it helps strengthen the long-term efforts and vision of the Foundation and its work to strengthen the future of Western Shoshone professionals. The Alumni Association provides opportunity for those who have benefited from the WSSF scholarship to give back to the Foundation and their communities,” stated Davanna Hooper, WSSF Alumni Task Force member.

During both events, Idaho State Representative Paulette Jordan provided the keynote addresses. Jordan was the first Native American woman to win a primary election and appear in a general election for Governor during the 2016 election cycle. Jordan shared her experience and personal story and challenged both groups to dream, set goals and work toward a promising and sustainable future.

The WSSF announced its application process for the Fall 2019 semester, with a deadline of June 25 for application submissions. For more information on the WSSF Fall 2019 Scholarship visit http://www.tr.scholarshipamerica.org/westernshoshone.

For more information about the Western Shoshone Scholarship Foundation or the WSSF Alumni Association please email Joseph Mike, Native American Affairs Specialist at jmike@barrick.com.