Steven R. Nelson Native Educator Scholarship

Portland, Oregon, United States | Full-time

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Education Northwest has had the honor of working with many Native educators, students, families, and community members throughout our 51-year history. These partnerships reflect a core value of our organization—the desire to address inequities within our education system and to ensure that all children and youth have the opportunity to reach their full potential. We believe that healthy Native communities are essential to the health and well-being of our region, and we remain committed to this effort.

The Steven R. Nelson Native Educator Scholarship Program is part of this commitment. This scholarship program strives to increase Native representation in the field of education by providing financial support, mentoring, and internships for Native students in the Northwest who are pursuing a master’s degree in education policy, leadership, technical assistance, research, or a closely related field. We view this program as an opportunity to create long-term partnerships that will improve our ability to meet the needs of Native communities.

Our former colleague, Steve Nelson, dedicated his career to working with tribes, communities, and schools to improve American Indian students’ success in academics and in life. This program honors his work by providing selected students with as many as three years of annually renewable scholarships. Awardees will receive a maximum of $5,000 each year, and we will award as many as five scholarships per year—one for a resident of each state in our primary service region of Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington. 

 

Eligibility Requirements--Individuals need to:


•  Reside in Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, or Washington

•  Be a member or descendent of a federally recognized, state recognized, or terminated American Indian tribe; or Alaska Native village, council, or corporation; or Native Hawaiian; or identify as a Pacific Islander from a United States–affiliated Pacific Island jurisdiction (specifically, American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, or the Republic of Palau)

•  Be accepted to or enrolled in a master’s program in an accredited, public or private, nonprofit institution of higher education in Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, or Washington and maintain a course load that ensures graduate degree completion within three years

•  Pursue a field of study in education policy, leadership, technical assistance, research, or a closely related field

• Have graduated from a 4-year, regionally accredited institution of higher learning

• Complete an essay that answers the questions:

  1. Why am I pursuing a master’s degree in the field of education policy, leadership, technical assistance, research, or closely related field?
  2. What are my post-graduation goals?
  3. How have I and will I contribute to strengthening my own community and/or rural or Native communities as a whole?


•  Submit three letters of recommendation (excluding letters from immediate family members), with at least one from a community member who can attest to the candidate’s Native heritage and his/her commitment to the designated course of study and to serving rural and/or Native communities after attainment of the master’s degree.

 

•  Submit undergraduate degree transcripts

•  Begin school as a full- or part-time student no later than the fall semester immediately following the award.


Application Procedures
Applications for the Steven R. Nelson Native Educator Scholarship can be submitted until March 31. No applications will be considered after the March 31 deadline.

Recipients will be notified of conditional awards no later than June 30, for study beginning the following fall term. Final awards will be made directly to the institution of higher education once an awardee has provided proof of acceptance and/or registration in an institution that meets the scholarship program requirements.

The scholarship program will be administered at the sole discretion of Education Northwest. Award funds will be deposited in the financial aid office of the institution attended by the recipient. Education Northwest reserves the right to change or discontinue the Steven R. Nelson Native Educator Scholarship Program at any time and without notice.

Additional Benefits of the Program

•  Awardees will have the opportunity to work with an Education Northwest mentor both during and after the program.
•  Awardees may also pursue a paid internship with Education Northwest, either at our home office in Portland, Oregon, or in the awardees current residence/location.

Questions?
For further information please contact:
Nelson Scholarship Administrator
c/o Human Resources, Education Northwest 101 SW Main Street, Suite 500, Portland, OR 97204

NelsonScholarship@educationnorthwest.org