The American Indian Center has a variety of resources for current students at UNC Chapel. We have exciting volunteer opportunities and serve as a campus-wide resource for American Indian cultural and intellectual enrichment.
AIC Scholastic Award Opportunities
During this 2022-2023 academic year, the UNC American Indian Center will be offering two monetary, scholastic awards for students that have demonstrated an interest in serving the North Carolina American Indian population. These awards are the Carolina Native Service Scholars Award (2 recipients), The Faith Danielle Hedgepeth Scholarship Award (1 recipient). In total, 3 UNC students will be awarded!
The deadline to apply for these awards is Monday, October 17, 2022. Each recipient will be featured in a spotlight article and posted on our website and social media pages to honor their accomplishments. Recipients will be announced in November, during American Indian Heritage Month.
Award details are provided below. Should you have questions, contact Native Student Engagement Coordinator – Qua Adkins at firstname.lastname@example.org or 919-843-5928.
Carolina Service Scholars Award
Background: The Carolina Native Service Scholars Award will pay a portion of book and supply expenses for first-year Summer Bridge students who have demonstrated service and/or leadership in a NC Native community.
How to Apply: Applicants are must write a one-page single space essay (maximum) about their demonstrated service and/or leadership in a NC Native Community and upload it into the following qualtrics link: APPLY HERE – CSSA
Award Amount: This year, two undergraduate students will be awarded $750 each to be used towards books and related school supplies.
Commitment: Students receiving the award will be encouraged to work at least one year during their first two years on a service project at the American Indian Center where they will be exposed to professional development, leadership, and community engagement opportunities.
The Faith Danielle Hedgepeth Award
Background: The Faith Danielle Hedgepeth Award seeks to celebrate and honor the life of former Tar Heel, Faith Danielle Hedgepeth. Established in 2015, the award serves to support current Tar Heels along their academic journey while providing an avenue for impact outside the classroom though extracurricular engagement, as Faith did during her time on campus. Faith was involved in various student organizations such as the Carolina Indian Circle (CIC) as well as others. She was a cherished member of the Summer Bridge family and many other social circles. A central goal of Faith’s educational pursuits was to be better positioned to have a positive impact in her community upon completion of her present and future studies.
The Faith Danielle Hedgepeth Award may be used towards books and related school supplies. Applicants should be a female, sophomore undergraduate student interested in pursuing a career in a helping or health profession serving American Indian populations. Interested students should also be able to demonstrate a record of service to the American Indian campus community.
How to Apply: Applicants are must write a one-page single space essay (maximum) about their demonstrated service and leadership in a NC Native community and how that has informed their academic and professional goals. Additionally, applicants must submit a resume demonstrating this service (e.g. tribal community engagement, Native student group involvement). Both the essay and the resume should be uploaded into the following qualtrics link: APPLY HERE – FDHA
Award Amount: One student will receive $1,000 to be used towards books and related school supplies.
If you would like to financially support this award, visit https://unc.live/faith.
Resources for American Indian and Indigenous Students
American Indian and Indigenous Studies
American Indian and Indigenous Studies at UNC Chapel Hill features a dynamic, multidisciplinary community of faculty, students, and staff, and is housed in the Dept. of American Studies. Our research, teaching, and service focus on the histories, contemporary experiences, expressive cultures, and political status of indigenous peoples in and beyond North America. Many of the faculty are devoted to collaborative research, and they value engaged scholarship that is relevant to Native American and indigenous communities.
American Indian Center
The American Indian Center is a public service center that bridges the richness of Native cultures with the strengths of Carolina in education, research and service through four areas of engagement: Engaged Scholarship, Native Community Engagement, Student Engagement, and Campus Community Engagement. The American Indian Center operates on values traditionally found in Indigenous communities: Respect, Responsibility, Reciprocity, and Balance. We lead with our values and we hope that this is how you get to know the American Indian Center.
Carolina American Indian Caucus (American Indian Faculty & Staff)
Dr. Larry Chavis: email@example.com
In the Spring of 2013, American Indian faculty and staff at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill met to form the first American Indian Caucus, including representatives from the AIC, AIIS, Carolina Student Legal Services, and professional schools (social work, nursing, business, law and etc.). Caucus members come from varied tribal backgrounds. They are a social and professional support group for Native faculty and staff at UNC Chapel Hill across a wide range of disciplines and departments. They engage with Native students as mentors to support their professional development at Carolina and beyond.
Ani Kahwi (Cherokee Coffee Hour)
Facilitator: Dr. Ben Frey firstname.lastname@example.org
Immerse yourself in learning the Cherokee language. No previous experience in the Cherokee language is required to participate. Open to students, faculty and staff. Ani Kahwi (Cherokee Coffee Hour) occurs every Tuesday from 2:00-3:00pm in Abernethy Hall (American Indian Center) and is facilitated by language instructor, Dr. Ben Frey, a citizen of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and Professor in the American Studies Department. Ani Kahwi is co-sponsored by the American Indian Center.
Alpha Pi Omega Sorority, Inc. – Alpha Chapter
Mission Statement: Alpha Pi Omega Sorority, Inc. was founded at UNC-Chapel Hill on September 1, 1994 by four phenomenal women. APiO is the first Native American Greek Letter organization in the United States. The sorority continues to grow and is a national organization with sisters across the nation. Founded on principles of education, spirituality, traditionalism, and contemporary issues, the sorority exists to serve as a support system for American Indian women on UNC’s campus and increase awareness of American Indian issues within the university community.
Carolina Indian Circle (CIC)
Mission Statement: CIC was founded in the fall of 1974 as a support group to meet the needs of American Indian students on UNC-Chapel Hill’s campus. At the time, when less than 10 American Indians were enrolled, the Circle was and continues to be an integral source of comfort and community. Our organization assists Native American students academically and socially by providing a positive atmosphere and a sense of community. We strive to educate the university community and the general public by insuring that Native American cultural heritage is recognized and respected at UNC-Chapel Hill through appropriate curriculum, research, administrative support, cultural events and increased American Indian representation on the faculty and staff.
Center for Student Success and Academic Counseling
Dr. Marcus Collins: email@example.com
The Center for Student Academic Counseling (CSAC) offers academic counseling and personal support for all UNC students. Historically, CSAC’s primary objective has been to sponsor programs and activities that promote academic excellence, increase retention, and improve the campus climate for diversity among minority students in general and American Indian and African American undergraduates in particular.
First Nations Graduate Circle (FNGC)
Mission Statement: FNGC is an organization of Native American graduate and professional students at UNC-Chapel Hill. The organization provides advocacy, support, professional development, mentoring and social functions to Native Americans across campus. Though FNGC is primarily made up of Native American students, the organization is open for full membership and participation regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, national origin, disability, age, veteran status, sexual orientation, or gender.
Native American Law Students Association (NALSA)
Mission Statement: NALSA serves as a cultural and academic support system for Native law students in the Triangle and the local Native community. NALSA accomplishes these goals by addressing issues of recruitment of Native law students, through advocacy of legal and non-legal interests affecting the Native community, and through the facilitation of improved communication among and between students, the Native community and the general public. The organization is open to all students!
Phi Sigma Nu Fraternity, Inc. – Gamma Chapter
Mission Statement: We, the Brothers of Phi Sigma Nu, empower Native Men to collectively engage in academic, social, cultural and physical realms to promote and inspire growth in tribal families, tribal communities, the United States of America and the world at large. We were established on February 13, 1996 at University of North Carolina at Pembroke and on February 3, 1997, the University of North Carolina at Pembroke recognized Phi Sigma Nu as a Greek organization, making it the first American Indian Fraternity in the World. Our motto is “Men of Valor, Men of Pride.”
“Unheard Voices” is a student-led a capella performance subgroup of the Carolina Indian Circle, officially founded in the 1970s as an American Indian spoken word performance group. Today, in honoring their roots, students combine spoken word advocacy with traditional songs for a unique and powerful expression of cultural pride and resiliency.
UNC’s Community Food Pantry (aka “Carolina Cupboard”)
If you are a student experiencing financial hardship or hunger, please know that UNC has a food pantry that was founded by UNC students, called Carolina Cupboard. It is housed within Avery Residence Hall’s basement (295 Ridge Road, Chapel Hill, NC 27514) which can be accessed through the side doors. It is accessible to any and all students. All a student needs to show is their PID. They are expanding to have a few refrigerators in Fall 2017, so they’ll be able to offer perishables, including meats, which is a great improvement. All food is free of charge. Please contact Carolina Cupboard with any questions or concerns about receiving or donating food: CarolinaCupboard@gmail.com
Other Resources (off-campus)
Minority Students & Healthcare Education: An Online Guide to School Success: https://www.edumed.org/resources/minority-students-healthcare-education/
Essential Career Resource for Veterans: https://www.velvetjobs.com/articles/insights/career-resource-for-veterans