Saving the Monarch butterfly population One tag at a time

By Sean Parrish

EPA Haskell Tribal Eco-Ambassadors Organization held the 2nd Annual Monarch tagging event on Sunday, September 24, 2017.

The Haskell Organization Waystation program  Kynser Wahwahsuck (Kickapoo), Eco-Ambassador member, stated “We hosted this event to get students involved and excited to tag monarchs! Monarchs are decreasing in numbers due to habitat loss caused by human destruction. The Eco-Ambassadors got a bundle of free milkweed last year and we planted it within our wetlands hoping to attract more butterflies to our campus on their way through Lawrence as they migrate to Central Mexico! This past weekend we tagged 45 monarchs, compared to last year we only tagged 9. ”

Catching the Monarchs

The 20 participants that showed up were educated on how to handle and place a tag, which is a code of three numbers and three letters, onto the underside wing of the butterflies. Then they were given the opportunity to catch, tag, and release the monarch butterflies (Danaus plexippus) that stopped to feast on flower nectar on their journey down South.

Eco-Ambassadors learned how to tag the butterflies

When they reach their destination in Central Mexico field workers monitor the populations by recording the code on the tag. Around January-March, the information goes to a database on the website, which is an affiliate program with the Kansas Biological Survey, located at the top of the hill, at Kansas University.

A few of the monarchs that were caught and tagged

Special thanks to all the Haskell Tribal EcoAmbassadors who coordinated this event: Dr. Daniel  Wildcat, Dr. Bridgett Chapin, Liz Blackburn, Annalise Guthrie,  Kathy LittleBull, Kynser Wahwahsuck, Ian Gambill, Joseph Zupan, and Josie Muskrat

“IT” Movie Review

by Obadiah Eastman
Stephen Kings IT just recently hit theatres on September 8, 2017. The new movie was a remake of the 1990 two-part TV of the same name. The TV series most notably starred Tim Curry as Pennywise the Dancing Clown and caused many young viewers to gain a new fear of clowns. Interesting enough, in King’s book the monster that is IT hibernates for 27 years in between its murdero

us rampages that go on for approximately a year. The remake of the clown into film has followed this pattern and was made exactly 27 years after the original TV series. IT doesn’t stop there when it comes to interesting facts though.

In just its opening weekend alone the movie hauled in $123 million breaking a few box records along the way for the month of September. It beat the largest September opening weekend which was set by the film Hotel Transylvania back in 2015 with 48.5 million. It also overcame the biggest opening weekend for a horror movie which was previously set by Paranormal Activity 3 in 2011 with 52.6 million.

In this new adaptation of the book into film Bill Skarsgård now plays the role of Pennywise. Going around campus I was able to ask a few students on what their thoughts of the film were.

Susan Hawkins, a Haskell freshman said, “It was suspenseful, but it wasn’t too scary. A lot of horror films seem to like to go for jump scares, but this one didn’t. Its scariness came from a culmination of constant scary things happening around the main cast. I don’t want to give too much away, but if you want to know what I mean I say go and see it for yourself. I would definitely recommend people to go and watch the movie! I mean, I’m going to watch it again soon.”

Mariah Hicks, a Haskell Junior said, “The movie was pretty great, but disturbing to watch. I mean, who isn’t disturbed by a clown that appears from the sewers and eats children. Overall, I highly recommend the movie. If you don’t mind horror movies go and see this one. I just hope it doesn’t spur the clown sightings to happen again from last year. Where all the creepy clowns were walking around during the day and at night. Now that’s scary.”

Weston Smith, a Haskell Senior said, “It turned out better than I thought it would be. Remakes usually don’t do well. Comparing this one to the original I can’t really say which one is better than the other. They are both equal when it comes to scaring children who will most likely watch it. I would recommend it, because it really does do the old film justice and was done well. The actors and the filming itself really shined together in this film.”

IT is currently playing in theatres everywhere and is definitely a movie you would want to see with family and friends.

Tom SpottedHorse: 27 years of service at Haskell ends

Tom SpottedHorse with current residential assistants and student residential assistants

Tom SpottedHorse started employment at Haskell in 1990 and had his retirement service on September 1st 2017. Along with all those years working at Haskell he has had many memories.

SpottedHorse’s retirement reception began with an honor song. Followed by a few words from Dr. Venida Chenault, Haskell’s current President. SpottedHorse was then gifted with a blanket from the university, and also a pillow from his mother. The reception was finished after SpottedHorse told a story of a night he was working as a Residential Advisor while also finishing his speech with a reassurance he would still be around campus in some way.

When asked what the most rewarding part of working at Haskell was SpottedHorse explained that, “working with students,” was the best aspect of Haskell. SpottedHorse is also a Haskell Alumni and was a boarding school student also. Living in boarding school helped SpottedHorse recognize the importance of housing for students.

Recounting his craziest memory of Haskell SpottedHorse responded that there, “were too many to name.” One individual memory that stood out he said was, “When I used to work nights a big snow storm had come through. There was a large crowd of guys standing out front taunting my OK Hall boys. This was before the age of cell phones but my boys starting running out of all the front entrances, almost at the same time. As they got outside the other boys rained snowballs at them. Well it was on then! More guys came rushing out of OK Hall and started returning fire with their own snowballs. They started chasing them south across campus as they retreated back towards Blalock. There they got more reinforcements, then other dorms joined in. I could hear them yelling from OK Hall as they got louder. The next thing I heard was they were all at Adobe Flats on the other side of the stadium. It sounded like a battle was going on there, with shouting and blood curdling war whoops. I had to check it out so another student  and I walked over there from OK Hall. I swear to this day when we got over there we saw at least 100-150 students in a snowball fight. They were all over Adobe Flats throwing round white snowballs at each other and running all around the Flats. It looked and sounded like the Battle of Little Big Horn. It seemed like the entire school emptied out of their dorms to join in. I went back to my dorm and listened to the battle rage on and on. Finally after a while my boys made it back to the dorm claiming victory with war whoops and raised fists. Indeed, “OK HALL – WHERE LEGENDS ARE MADE”.”  While also expressing that wasn’t the craziest but it was a memory that stood out the most.

Kristen Torres, Senior and niece of Tom SpottedHorse, stated in her academic career that SpottedHorse had “helped me a lot. Whenever I needed help in a situation I knew I could count on him (SpottedHorse) to resolve it.” Torres stated her most memorable moment with SpottedHorse was when, “I found out he was my uncle. I found out when I first came here around spring of 2016. On-the-clock I was just another student to him, but after he’d get off work him and I would get to meet up and catch up. To me it was great having family around when the rest live 5 hours away.”

SpottedHorse explained he’s going to miss the people, students and coworkers, the most. Yet he also understands people retiring happens, but the good thing about it is you get to meet new people as the position gets filled and as the one retiring goes on seeing new aspects of life.

Indian Leader and Haskell News Reporters Recognized at National Journalism Conference

Indian Leader staff, Travis Campbell, and advisor, Rhonda LeValdo, attended the annual Excellence in Journalism conference in Anaheim, California. Indian Leader and Haskell News reporters received twenty awards, roughly ten percent of the total awarded, for articles published during the 2016 school year and LeValdo received two awards for her work in radio.

In addition to attending the Native American Journalism Association (NAJA) luncheon and awards banquet attendees were provided the opportunity to attend a number of panels given by distinguished figures in Native American journalism. Recurring themes among these panels included the importance of establishing and maintaining a Native presence in media production, as well as the importance of speaking out against negative stereotyping.  One of the most memorable panels was Archiving Tribal History in Print and Digital, given by Erin Fehr, archivist at Sequoyah National Research Center and Cynthia Joyce, editor and associate professor at the University of Mississippi. Fehr and Joyce spoke extensively on the importance of preserving contemporary as well as historical narratives both online and in print. Other panels focused on the importance of journalist safety in the field, coverage of LGBTQ issues, and the use of smart phones in reporting.

A highlight of the conference was the NAJA Membership Luncheon Meeting where Tim Giago, formerly of the Lakota Times which he sold and it was rebranded as Indian Country Today, received the Medill Milestone achievement award. Giago was nominated by the NAJA-Medill selection committee for his lifetime of service to journalism and many years of dedication to NAJA as a founder of the organization. He is a lifetime member and the first president of the original Native American Press Association.

The Indian Leader would like to extend our sincere congratulations to Ms. LeValdo and all of our awards recipients on their success and look forward to seeing the greatness that you all accomplish in the future.

The listing of the awards:

Third Place
Shana Lombard
Haskell News, First year at Haskell

TV – Best News Story
First Place
Rustie Anglin
Haskell News, Pre-enrollment issues

Second Place
Terrence Littlejohn
Haskell News, Haskell mascot

Third Place
Rachel Whiteside
Haskell News, Bernie Sanders campaigns in Lawrence

Print / Online
Print / Online – Best Editorial
First Place
Lori Hasselman
Haskell Indian Leader, A student perspective on healing

Second Place
Lori Hasselman
Haskell Indian Leader, The Invisible Student

Third Place
Rachel Whiteside
Haskell Indian Leader, Millennials have a voice to make a difference

Print / Online – Best Sports Story
First Place
Keiton Guess
Haskell Indian Leader, Punching the Big Ticket

Second Place
Reid Williams
Haskell Indian Leader, Haskell Men’s and Women’s Basketball Preview

Print / Online – Best Feature Photo
First Place
Shana Lombard
Haskell Indian Leader, Haskell alumna protests on the street to get the attention of local citizens

Print / Online – Best Feature Story
First Place
Lori Hasselman
Haskell Indian Leader, AIHEC club prepares for student conference

Second Place
Chelsea Jenkins
Haskell Indian Leader, Haskell students keeping traditional art forms alive

Third Place
Lori Hasselman
Haskell Indian Leader, Indigenous People’s Climate Change Working Group

Print / Online – Best News Photo
First Place
Shana Lombard
Haskell Indian Leader, Haskell Stands with Standing Rock

Second Place
Michael Begay
Haskell Indian Leader, Supaman comes to Haskell

Third Place
Reid Williams
Haskell Indian Leader, Haskell sends the ball over the net

Print / Online – Best News Story
First Place
Lori Hasselman
Haskell Indian Leader, Haskell artists heat up community climate change event”

Second Place
Rustie Anglin
Haskell Indian Leader, Educating Native students

Third Place
Chelsea Jenkins
Haskell Indian Leader, Native Americans more prominent focus in Election 2016

General Excellence in Student Coverage
Haskell Indian Leader

Roof on Hiawatha Hall finally being repaired

By Allen Stephenson

Renovations to the roof at Hiawatha Hall took place this week.  The historic building originally served as a chapel and auditorium when it was built in 1898. Since then, it’s been re-purposed many times, acting as the girl’s gymnasium and even a theater. Hiawatha Hall fell into disrepair sometime around 2005 according to Haskell records, due to water damage and mold issues. It is also missing its church bell and no one knows where it is at. Hiawatha also boast a swimming pool in the basement.   Skyline Roofing is the contractor for the job.

Hiawatha was named for the Onondaga leader and great orator who helped influence the formation of the Iroquois League in the New York area in the late 1500’s. The National Historic Registry has requested that Hiawatha be a permanent building on campus

While the story of Haskell is varied and diverse, it is uplifting to see the restorative beginnings to a beautiful and legendary piece of history and architecture on campus.  Are you excited about restoring Hiawatha Hall?  Let us know and as always Onward Haskell.

Workers from Skyline Roofing are fixing the holes in Hiawatha Hall. Photo by Travis Campbell

Tribal College Journal Seeks Tribal Student Blogger for Paid Position

As part of its growing online presence, Tribal College Journal will launch a new, bi-monthly student blog beginning in October 2017. All students currently enrolled at a tribal college or university who are interested in authoring the blog are eligible to apply.

Applicants must complete a short application form and submit a 500-word, blog-entry writing sample. All applications must be emailed to by September 24, 2017. TCJ will review applications, conduct interviews, and select a blogger by September 29, 2017. The writing sample, will serve as the selected blogger’s first blog entry. blogger will receive a monthly stipend of $100 ($50 per blog entry). All blogs should be between 400-500 words and be accompanied with an image. The blogger will submit the first monthly blog entry no later than the 1st of each month. The second monthly blog will be submitted by the 15th. The blog will run from October to May, 2018.

Application Deadline: September 24, 2017
TCJ Final Selection of Blogger: September 29, 2017
First Blog Entry Due Date: October 1, 2017.

For more information and a copy of the application form, email