Navajo Nation Looks to Tribal Colleges to Develop Tribal Workforces

President Russell Begaye said tribal nations look to tribal institutions like SIPI to advance their technological workforces.

Published August 26, 2017

ALBUQUERQUE – Navajo Naton President Russell Begaye told the staff at Southwestern Polytechnic Institute (SIPI) that they have an important task in developing a workforce of technical leaders for Native America.

The president spoke to the staff on Monday, Aug. 21, at the invitation of Dr. Sherry Allison, President of SIPI. More recently, President Begaye has joined the SIPI Board of Regents.

“The Navajo Nation is exploring a new paradigm in developing advanced manufacturing,” he said. “We are looking to SIPI and other tribal colleges and universities to develop this workforce.”

Advancements in technology call for research and production of materials to assist in building satellites, cell phones and renewable forms of energy. The potential for the Navajo Nation to be a part of this technological boom could be furthered through education and specified training.

“For this technology to come from the Navajo Nation is amazing,” President Begaye said. “We need our education to evolve at a much higher level to train our students to be leaders in this developing industry.”

In addition to the instructors, President Begaye tasked all Native American students with increasing their skillset to position their tribes to be technological leaders in emerging fields.

“Our students are intelligent, they’re dreamers and innovators,” he said. “They’re looking to gain knowledge. With many emerging fields of technology, we need SIPI to continue to expand and to train our people.”

By fostering technological paradigms within our students and workforce, the Navajo Nation can change it’s economic and technical landscape said the president.

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