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Alyssa London joined Native News Online on this week’s Native Bidaské (Spotlight). London is a previous Miss Alaska USA in 2017, and also was a Top 10 finalist in the Miss USA Pageant that same year. She is a NBC News contributor and is also the founder and chief storyteller at Culture Story. London also wrote a children's book titled “The Journey of the Freckled Indian.”

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During the interview with Editor Levi Rickert, London talked about her projects and the importance of engaging Native youth in culture. She is a Stanford University graduate, though while she was there, she found herself having to reaffirm her identity. 

“Even from elementary school and all the way through Stanford, I would need to qualify myself. I am Tlingit, I am Native, but I am also Czech and Norwegian. I am proud of that as well, but I have also struggled with feeling accepted for my identity, and it seems that other people struggle with that as well,” she explains. 

“Whether you're Native or not, I think everyone wants to be able to feel proud of who they are. So I thought If I just started with Native youth and allowed them to feel more confident with their identity from a young age I thought that confidence would translate into them feeling validated to engage with their culture for their entire life.” 

Watch the whole livestream here or click below. 

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