Take Wing Alaska supports Alaska Native students from rural communities in their endeavors to transition to urban post-secondary education with the long-term vision for them to return home and contribute to their communities.
To provide a mentored transition for Alaska Native high school students from rural communities in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Region to an urban post-secondary campus experience, as well as, a cultural immersion experience for educators.
Take Wing Alaska will recruit students in their sophomore year as they make the decision to attend an urban post-secondary institution. The students will be given a campus immersion experience in the summer and return home to select a community sponsor to assist the student to remain in school and the family to understand the commitment the student has undertaken.
In their junior year, the students will return to campus for a four-day exploration with their community sponsor; both will meet campus outreach and Native programs representatives and mentor Alaska Native students who will remain in contact with the student. In their senior year, students return for another four-day immersion where they will shadow their mentor students for classes and campus events. The long-term goal is for the student to earn a certificate or degree that will benefit them in their home community.
Additionally, Take Wing Alaska provides a cross-cultural immersion experience for educators to attend an Alaska Native culture camp to gain cultural awareness and insight to Alaska Native peoples, their culture, and their ways of teaching, learning and living.
- To enable rural students to successfully complete post-secondary education
- To instill the value to have these young people then return what they have learned to their home community
- To assist rural students and their families to understand the transition necessary for rural Alaska Native students to shift to urban centers for post-secondary education
- To enhance rural students self-awareness, confidence and resiliency to begin their post-secondary education
- To provide the students and their sponsors with information about the post-secondary commitments and expectations
- To build student participant character readiness to become part of the campus culture
- To provide entry-level course educators at UAA and Job Corps a cultural immersion experience to assist rural Alaska Native students to be successful in their courses
- To demonstrate that rural Alaska Native students who participate in an early intervention and post-secondary cultural transition program are more likely to apply and enroll but follow through and attend the program