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The Northeastern State University (NSU) Center for Tribal Studies in Oklahoma is seeking to increase its Native American student population, thanks to a newly awarded $2.4 million grant from the federal government.

The University will use the grant funding, coming from the U.S. Department of Education’s Native American Serving Nontribal Institutions program, to “improve and expand” its capacity to serve Native American and low-income students, according to a press release from NSU.

“This grant will allow us to expand our initiative and outreach programs, expand the Native language revitalization efforts of the Cherokee and Indigenous Studies program and develop innovative solutions that address the educational and cultural needs of the Native American population at NSU,” said NSU President Rodney Hanley in a statement.

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That includes expanding Cherokee language courses, providing professional development for faculty and staff, and renovating a historic on-campus building to serve as a cultural and life skills lab.

NSU is the oldest institute of higher learning in Oklahoma. Its main campus is located in Tahlequah, the capital of the Cherokee Nation. According to its website, 20% of the enrolled student population is American Indian/Alaska Native. 

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