Making the Invisible Visible; A Policy Blueprint from Urban Indian America

event-graphic-ii

register-button

Monday, October 10, 2016
DoubleTree, St. Paul
5:30pm- social hour & networking
6pm- dinner & program

American Indian OIC and partners representing the Minneapolis/St. Paul urban Indian community will observe Indigenous People’s Day by hosting the working event, Making the Invisible Visible; A Policy Blueprint from Urban Indian America. From Making the Invisible Visible; A Policy Blueprint from Urban Indian America by the National Urban Indian Family Coalition:

The erasure or rendering of Native people invisible has been and remains a key factor limiting the opportunities and wellbeing of our communities. Native people residing in urban areas are amongst the most invisibilized populations in the nation, yet represent a significant portion of Native people in the United States: 72% of all American Indian/Alaska Natives and 78% of all American Indian Alaska Natives children live in cities. This invisibility has created and perpetuates extreme disparities across all the major sectors of life and community for tribal citizens living in cities including: children and family services, housing and homelessness, economic development and employment, and health and wellness (including the justice system). The lack of access to policy making or representation in current initiatives makes remedying these gross inequities especially challenging. Thus there has been insufficient efforts to develop comprehensive national policy or effective infrastructure at the local, state, and federal levels to serve urban Native communities. This absence has manifested in profound inequities in the distribution of resources, and access to high quality programming and services for Native people living in cities. 

Keynote Speaker & Moderator:janeen-comenote-headshot
Janeen Comenote is a founding member and director of the National Urban Indian Family Coalition.  She has spent the last 10 years advocating for American Indians/Alaska Native who live off reservations and endeavoring to provide a voice to this often “silent majority” in Indian Country.  She is the author of Making the Invisible Visible; A Policy Blueprint from Urban Indian America.

Speakers & Panelists:
Representative Peggy Flanagan, Minnesota House of Representatives
Dr. Joe Hobot, American Indian OIC
Mary LaGarde, Minneapolis American Indian Center
Robert Lilligren, Native American Community Development Institute
Patina Park, Minnesota Indian Women’s Resource Center

Co-Hosts:

Sponsor:
bush-logo-ii

register-button

Education Leads to New Career for Takoda Graduate

Cory, a proud member of the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe, knew he needed a change. He was working in a low-paying job that was starting to take a physical toll on his body. He wanted a job that had financial security and opportunities for advancement and one that was less physically straining. With the guidance of a caseworker at a Minnesota WorkForce Center, Cory determined that further education was his solution.

Last fall, Cory enrolled in the Takoda Institute’s Computer Support training program. During the program, he acquired the foundational skills and knowledge needed to enter a job in tech support. He found the atmosphere at Takoda to be serious, but also one that didn’t create unnecessary stress for students. Grants and scholarships allowed Cory to complete the program free from the burden of student debt and even provided some cushion for living expenses. He was also able to gain valuable hands-on work experience in his field by completing an internship.

In just nine months, Cory completed training and was ready to enter the tech workforce. He strived for excellence and was determined to stand out amongst the rest, especially to prospective employers. So, when the opportunity for employment presented itself, Cory was eager and ready. A staffing firm came to the school looking for tech workers to fill open positions. Takoda staff referred Cory for employment and, because he already had practical experience from his internship, he seamlessly transitioned into employment. He is grateful to his Takoda career counselor whose skills and dedication contributed to his gaining employment. “His help is a major reason I got hired so quickly after I completed the program. The things David taught me will continue to serve me well into the future.”

Cory is now working as a Technical Support Technician and is charged with moving things along as efficiently as possible in a fast-growing technical support department. He has increased his earnings by 40% and offers this advice to incoming students, “be efficient, productive, and constant in your awareness of what you set out to achieve.” Cory is excited to excel in his position and looks forward to advancing in his career.

 The Takoda Institute is enrolling now for its next quarter. Graduates will gain hands-on experience and vocational knowledge in the fields of health information, computer support, or administrative support. Students are also provided with a career counselor who will help them develop a professional profile, gain work experience, and connect to employment in their field of study. To learn more, follow this link.

If you are an alumnus of American Indian OIC’s programming and would like to share your story of success, contact Lucie at 952.977.9303.