Wk11AssgnSmallwoodC.docx

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2 Introduction Oglala Lakota College is a tribally chartered entity; by definition, Oglala Sioux Tribe owns the institution. It is through this charter (granted by Oglala Sioux Tribe on November 22, 1971 as Lakota Higher Education Center) that the institution was granted permission to operate. The charter provides insight into organizational purpose, structure, power/authority, and scope; oversight/governance remains with Oglala Sioux Tribe. History: Humble Beginnings Oglala Lakota College historical discernment excerpt taken from OLC Website: “Oglala leaders have pressed the federal government to meet the educational obligations it promised in treaties and agreements. With the advent of efforts to extend tribal sovereignty by American Indians throughout the United States came recognition by the Lakota’s that control of education is also the control of its destiny. On March 4, 1971, the Oglala Sioux Tribal Council exercised its sovereignty by chartering the Lakota Higher Education Center. This marked the commencement of a vision's realization which continues to evolve in the history of the Oglala Lakota. During its non-accredited years, the college entered into agreements with Black Hills State College, University of South Dakota, and University of Colorado to "borrow" their accreditation for various associate degree programs. Students were taught on the reservation by faculty chosen by the college, but approved by the state institutions, who taught the same courses as offered in South Dakota's colleges. It was a complicated system but it met the needs of students. The college awarded its first associate degrees in 1974. In 1978, the name of the college was changed to Oglala Sioux Community College to reflect its status as community college. In 1979, Oglala Sioux Community College became a candidate for North Central Association accreditation. The college settled into its dispersed, decentralized campus system which features college centers in Page 2 of 24
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3 each of the nine reservation districts. In 1980, the Oglala Sioux Tribal Council allowed the college to occupy its present administrative center. Piya Wiconi is the most visible symbol of the college but the district centers are where the mission is being fulfilled.” (Oglala Lakota College website, 2018) Problem Statement Oglala Lakota College is plagued by a steady decline in enrollment and completion rates over the last 10 years which has resulted with a “notice” or probationary status elevated to special monitoring with the Higher Learning Commission (the institution charged with accrediting colleges nationally). Situational Analysis There are many elements within the infrastructure at Oglala Lakota College which afflict and hinder all facets of the institution from high employee turnover rate, lack of educational progression, and low to no student recruitment and retention. This decline in enrollment has been clear and obvious over the last decade. With online courses and industry expansion, it is evident
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  • Fall '16
  • Lakota people, Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, Oglala Lakota, Oglala Lakota College

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