EDUCATION

AILA announces 2020 American Indian Youth Literature Awards

AMERICAN INDIAN LIBRARY ASSOCIATION - January 27, 2020 - 9:36am

For Immediate Release
January 27, 2020

Philadelphia — Today American Indian Youth Literature Award winning titles were highlighted during the American Library Association (ALA) Youth Media Awards, the premier announcement of the best of the best in children’s and young adult literature. The awards are new to the ALA Youth Media Awards lineup and are administered by the American Indian Library Association (AILA), an affiliate of the ALA.

Awarded biennially, the American Indian Youth Literature Award identifies and honors the very best writing and illustrations by and about Native Americans and Indigenous peoples of North America. Books selected to receive the award present Indigenous North American peoples in the fullness of their humanity. Winners and Honor Books were selected in the categories Best Picture Book, Best Middle Grade Book, and Best Young Adult Book.

According to Lara Aase, 2020 AIYLA Chair, for this round of Awards, “there were more excellent books submitted than ever before, including some from major U.S. publishers. We chose books that appealed to the young readers we know, and we were thrilled to see writers address contemporary as well as historic and traditional topics, including everything from fry bread to forced adoption to finger weaving, Native women military heroes to missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls, traditional tattooing to high school romance to grizzly bears. Many of us grapple with issues of identity; we are grateful to see authors and illustrators represent the myriad identities of young Indigenous readers.”

The 2020 American Indian Youth Literature Award winner for Picture Book is “Bowwow Powwow: Bagosenjige-niimi’idim,” written by Brenda J. Child (Red Lake Ojibwe), translated into Ojibwe by Gordon Jourdain (Lac La Croix First Nation), and illustrated by Jonathan Thunder (Red Lake Ojibwe), published by the Minnesota Historical Society Press.

In “Bowwow Powwow: Bagosenjige-niimi’idim,” Windy goes to a Powwow with her Uncle and her dog Itchy Boy, and afterwards she falls asleep under the northern lights. She has a “weird and wonderful” dream about a Bowwow Powwow, where all the dancers are dogs. Windy sees veterans in a Grand Entry, a drum group, and traditional dancers, grass dancers, jingle-dress dancers, and fancy dancers–all with telltale ears and paws and tails. The brightly-colored pictures evoke the sights, sounds, and tastes of a Powwow—“always in motion, part old and part new, glittering and plain, but still wonderful, almost like a dream.”

The committee selected five Picture Book Honor titles including:

“Fry Bread: A Native American Family Story,” written by Kevin Noble Maillard (Seminole Nation, Mekusukey Band), illustrated by Juana Martínez-Neal (Peruvian-American), and published by Roaring Brook Press / Macmillan.

“Birdsong,” written and illustrated by Julie Flett (Cree-Métis) and published by Greystone Kids.

“At the Mountain’s Base,” written by Traci Sorell (Cherokee), illustrated by Weshoyot Alvitre (Tongva/Scots-Gaelic), and published by Kokila / Penguin Random House.

“We Are Grateful,” written by Traci Sorell (Cherokee), illustrated by Frané Lessac, and published by Charlesbridge.

“Raven Makes the Aleutians,” adapted from a traditional Tlingit story and illustrated by Janine Gibbons (Haida, Raven of the Double-Finned Killer Whale clan, Brown Bear House) and published by Sealaska Heritage.

The 2020 American Indian Youth Literature Award winner for best Middle Grade Book is “Indian No More,” written by Charlene Willing McManis (Umpqua/Confederated Tribes of Grande Ronde) with Traci Sorell (Cherokee), cover art by Marlena Myles (Spirit Lake Dakota, Mohegan, Muscogee Creek), published by Tu Books / Lee & Low.

In “Indian No More,” it is 1957, and as part of the Indian termination policy, the United States government has passed the Indian Relocation Act to assimilate Native Americans from reservations into urban areas. Ten-year-old Regina and her family have to leave the Grand Ronde reservation after the federal government tells them the Umpqua tribe no longer exists. Regina becomes “Indian no more” overnight—even though her ancestors were Indian for countless generations. Her family moves to Los Angeles, where for the first time, Regina faces the viciousness of racism. This story will resonate with modern Native American families, over 70% of whom now live in urban areas.

The committee selected two Middle Grade Book Honor titles including:

“I Can Make This Promise,” written by Christine Day (Upper Skagit), with cover art by Michaela Goade (Tlingit, Kiks.ádi clan, Steel House), published by Harper Collins.

“The Grizzly Mother,” written by Hetxw’ms Gyetxw (“Bret D. Huson,” Gitxsan), illustrated by Natasha Donovan (Métis Nation of British Columbia), and published by Highwater Press.

The 2020 American Indian Youth Literature Award for best Young Adult Book is “Hearts Unbroken,” written by Cynthia Leitich Smith (Muscogee) and published by Candlewick Press. Louise is a high school journalist with a major story to cover: the school musical director’s ethnically inclusive approach to casting “The Wizard of Oz,” which has provoked backlash in their mostly white, middle-class Kansas town. Long-held prejudices are laid bare and hostilities spread against teachers, parents, and students—especially the cast members at the center of the controversy, including Lou’s little brother, who’s playing the Tin Man. As tensions heighten at school, so does Lou’s romantic life—but as she’s learned, “dating while Native” can be difficult. Will she protect her own heart, or break someone else’s?

The award committee selected four Young Adult Book Honor titles including:

“Surviving the City,” written by Tasha Spillet (Nehiyaw-Trinidadian), illustrated by Natasha Donovan (Métis Nation of British Columbia), and published by Highwater Press.

“Reawakening Our Ancestors’ Lines: Revitalizing Inuit Traditional Tattooing,” gathered and compiled by Angela Hovak Johnston (Inuk), with photography by Cora De Vos (Inuk), published by Inhabit Media.

“An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States for Young People,” written by Debbie Reese (Nambé Owingeh) and Jean Mendoza adapted from the adult book by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, published by Beacon Press.

“Apple in the Middle,” written by Dawn Quigley (Ojibwe, Turtle Mountain Band) and published by North Dakota State University Press.

Members of the American Indian Youth Literature Award are Chair Lara Aase, Hesperus, Colorado; Paulita Aguilar (Kewa), Santo Domingo Pueblo/Albuquerque, N.M; Cameron Becenti (Diné), Albuquerque, N.M.; Naomi Bishop (Akimel O’odham/ Pima Gila River Indian Community), Mesa, Ariz.; Vanessa ‘Chacha’ Centeno (Chahta), Sacramento, Calif.; Anne Heidemann, Mount Pleasant, Mich.; Erin Hollingsworth, Utqiaġvik, Alaska; Janice Kowemy (Laguna), Laguna Pueblo, N.M.; Sunny Day Real Bird (Crow Apsaalooké), Crow Agency/Ronan, Mont.; and Ofelia Liz Zepeda (Tohono O’odham), Stanfield/Tucson, Ariz.

The American Indian Library Association is a membership action group that addresses the library-related needs of American Indians and Alaska Natives. Members are individuals and institutions interested in the development of programs to improve library cultural and informational services in school, public, and academic libraries. AILA is committed to disseminating information about Indian cultures, languages, values, and traditions to the library community.

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Local Control of Tribal Artifacts Stored at SKC in Danger

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 23, 2020 - 6:38pm

The tug of war between the Army Corps of Engineers and US Forest Service, and the CSKT Preservation Office over the tribal archeological artifacts stored at Salish Kootenai College continues.

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Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College Welcomes New President

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 22, 2020 - 6:14pm

Stephanie Hammitt started serving as interim president in July 2018 after the retirement of the previous president, Larry Anderson.

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Diné College, University of Arizona in Full Swing with $1.3M Neuroscience Partnership

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 22, 2020 - 6:13pm

The focus of the project is to create a pipeline of scholars to go from Diné College to neuroscience programs at top-tier research universities around the U.S.

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Funding for Revitalization of Tribal Languages Announced

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 22, 2020 - 6:13pm

“On the Northern Cheyenne Reservation, the Montana Indian Language Program has brought together language and culture specialists from five reservation districts,” said Dr. Richard Littlebear, president of Chief Dull Knife College, Northern Cheyenne Tribe.

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NTU Starts Navajo Language Translation Program for Elections

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 21, 2020 - 6:58pm

The program is designed to address the need for interpreters to be present and available for Navajo voters when they are seeking information about elections or when casting ballots, according to a press release from the university.

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Diné College Receives Federal Grant to Combat On-Campus Violence

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 21, 2020 - 6:58pm

Diné College is the recipient of a federal grant to develop and strengthen campus security and programs that address domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking on campus.

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UTTC, UMary Team Up for Mid-Winter Powwow

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 21, 2020 - 6:57pm

Martin Luther King Day is about celebrating a man who promoted the idea of inclusiveness. The University of Mary and United Tribes Technical College teamed up to celebrate that message and create a new tradition in Bismarck.

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Food for Thought Raises $25K

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 21, 2020 - 6:57pm

The event raised over $25,000 for student scholarships at the Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College, said Mary Soyring, a member of the foundation's board of directors.

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Montana Tribes Receive Funding to Preserve, Revive Native Languages

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 17, 2020 - 6:13pm

Stone Child College at Rocky Boy’s Indian Reservation, the Fort Belknap tribal government and the tribal government serving the Little Shell Tribe of Chippewa Indians are among the agencies receiving funds, the Montana Department of Commerce announced this week.

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Diné College Receives Grant to Fight Domestic Violence, Assault, Stalking

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 17, 2020 - 6:11pm

Resources that serve domestic violence or sexual assault victims can sometimes be scarce, especially in rural areas. But the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) is helping to bridge that gap by partnering with Diné College.

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Lumina Foundation Grants American Indian College Fund $650,000 for Research

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 17, 2020 - 6:11pm

Under the grant, the American Indian College Fund will establish a two-part and 30-month project aimed at analyzing completion rates under factors such as the rising cost of college and high rates of poverty among American Indian and Alaska Native (AIAN) communities

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SD Colleges Make List of Top Schools for Indigenous Students

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 9, 2020 - 6:21pm

South Dakota schools on the list are: • Black Hills State University • Oglala Lakota College • Sinte Gleska University • South Dakota State University • University of South Dakota.

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Year in Review: The Most-Read Articles of 2019

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 9, 2020 - 2:08pm

Tribal College Journal’s articles are read across multiple platforms, sharing Indigenous perspectives and the success of the tribal college movement. Here are our most popular pieces of the past year.

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Navajo Technical University’s Culinary Arts and Baking Programs Granted Five Year Re-Accreditations

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 8, 2020 - 6:16pm

NTU’s Culinary Arts and Professional Baking programs are the only at a tribal college and university to hold accreditation with the ACF, and one of two existing programs in the state of New Mexico.

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Tasting Event Returns to FDLTCC

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 8, 2020 - 6:13pm

The seventh annual “Food for Thought: A Tasting Event” returns Thursday, Jan. 16 from 4:30-7 p.m. in the Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College campus commons and amphitheater.

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Ag Appropriations Bill Funding to Support American Indian Students

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 8, 2020 - 6:11pm

President Donald Trump signed the 2020 Agriculture Appropriations Bill, Dec. 20, with a historic provision that will provide full funding to support American Indian students seeking the benefits of higher education at land-grant universities, which include tribal colleges.

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Navajo Tech Students Graduate with Veterinary Technician Licensure

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 8, 2020 - 5:38pm

Navajo Technical University (NTU) students Selena Saunders and Krystal Louis made tribal college and university (TCU) history by becoming the first students to graduate as licensed veterinary technicians from a TCU veterinary technology program accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA).

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Five Native Films and Shows You Should Be Streaming in 2020

TRIBAL COLLEGE JOURNAL - January 8, 2020 - 5:25pm

This past year brought an array of new stories to the large and small screens. Now is the perfect time to tune-in for some mesmerizing Native-driven work.

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