- By Neely Bardwell
Cheryl Crazy Bull, Wacinyanpi Win (They Depend on Her), the President and CEO of the American Indian College Fund, is a citizen of the Sicangu Lakota Nation. She has been in her position with the American Indian College Fund since 2012.
“The ruling is rooted in the sense that the United States is color blind,” Crazy Bull told Rickert. “We know as Indigenous people, and in relationship with other people of color, that is simply not true. In order for us to have an equitable experience in the United States, then we need to have systemic supports that gives us that in the higher education space. One of the things that the case made many of us who are in Native higher education realize is that there is not a lot of information about the impact of race-conscious admissions on American Indian and Alaska Native students.”
Crazy Bull speaks on how the ruling was disheartening to her and her colleagues. She spoke on a topic on everyone’s mind after the ruling: how Native students will be affected and what this means for the already low rate of enrollment for Native American students in higher education institutions.
Crazy Bull asserts that the American Indian College Fund affirms tribal citizenship, sovereignty, and the inequities that are tied to those identities. She makes the argument that the responsibility to ensure Native people are being provided the necessary tools for success falls to higher education institutions.
The American Indian College Fund is a nonprofit that centers on funding Native college students and their higher academic journeys. It is the nation’s largest and highest-rated American Indian nonprofit and provides more scholarships to Natives than any other organization.
Crazy Bull has a lifelong history of being an educator, community activist, as she uses the philosophy and traditions of Native people as the backbone of her activism.
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