BISMARCK (UTN) – Joshua Chavez is the American Indian College Fund “Student of the Year” for United Tribes Technical College.

Chavez is from the Northern Arapaho Tribe in WY. He was on the UTTC President’s List for Fall Semester 2015 and Spring Semester 2016.

He’s a member of All Nations Assembly of God Church in Bismarck and a regular volunteer for clean-up, social gatherings and events at the church that meets on the UTTC campus. He was involved as a volunteer with the Northern Arapaho Council of Elders language revitalization program back home and with the tribe’s youth program. 

Chavez said his educational goal at UTTC was to graduate with a certificate in welding, which he did on May 13.  “My objective was to work hard and make the President’s List,” he says. “I feel this is a high honor that will open more opportunities for me in the workforce.”

Chavez believes that completing his educational goal is an example for young people on the reservation.  “There isn’t a lot of opportunity in the Native community and higher education is limited,” he wrote in an essay for the College Fund award. “I believe that knowledge is power. As long as you are willing to dedicate yourself to attaining it, with time, effort and hard work, it is possible.”

“My younger siblings look up to me and by graduating and continuing to live a healthy lifestyle, I know I will inspire them to follow my lead,” he says.

Chavez is the son of Teresa Hughes-His Chase, a UTTC graduate, Gipp Fellowship recipient, and former UTTC staff member who now works for Arapahoe School District #38 on the Wind River Reservation.

About his future, Chavez believes that job opportunities in North Dakota are endless. “My goal is to be employed in the Bakken Shale region so I can gain experience necessary to further my career as a certified welder.”

“I would like to be an independent contractor for oil companies and eventually own my own welding company,” he says.

Chavez was selected for the $1,000 scholarship from among students nominated by each UTTC academic department. Applicants were ranked based on GPA, community involvement and career goals.

Chavez expressed his thanks and appreciation to the College Fund. “This will help pay for my tuition, books, fees and living expenses as I work to accomplish my educational goals,” he said. “Thank you wholeheartedly. I’m truly humbled, blessed and thankful.”

For more information about scholarships and grants at UTTC, please contact UTTC’s Student Financial Aid staff: 701-255-3285 x 3123.

 

Joshua Chavez was featured April 29, 2016 in a Bismarck Tribune story, which you can access at this link:

http://bismarcktribune.com/news/local/bismarck/uttc-grad-excels-in-welding/article_6cbefbd9-a3e3-5fd1-b1ba-255b92afcb7b.html