Aaniiih Nakoda College Newsletter
Fall 2015

ANC's Returning Buffalo building houses the welding shop,
workforce training classes, and NACTEP project staff.
The Tribal College Consortium for Developing Montana and North Dakota Workforce (TCC DeMaND Workforce) started out in early 2012. It was a three year project with a total budget of $18,947,635. Because of a late start and kinks that needed to be worked out with DOL, it became a four year project ending this fall, 2015. It was a Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training Grants Program (TAACCCT) project that was funded by the Employment and Training Administration of the Department of Labor.

The DeMaND project was a consortium of tribal colleges that worked to pool expertise and resources towards meeting critical needs in Indian Country while addressing the challenges of unemployment and trade impacted workers. The consortium included four tribal colleges: United Tribes Technical College (Bismarck, ND) was the lead institution, and Cankdeska Cikana Community College (Fort Totten, ND), Fort Peck Community College (Poplar, MT) and Aaniiih Nakoda College (Harlem, MT) were the other three colleges.

At Aaniiih Nakoda College (ANC), the grant enabled the college to purchase equipment, renovate instructional spaces, develop relationships with community partners and potential employers, and establish processes to better and more effectively support workforce development and training. The grant helped students complete training programs and earn industry-recognized credentials so that they could obtain gainful employment.

Instructional offerings at ANC included Carpentry, Commercial Drivers Licensing, Certified Nurses Aides, Emergency Medical Technicians, Phlebotomy, HAZWOPER/HAZMAT, Weatherization, Welding and Firefighting. Classes were taught in ANC's new "Returning Buffalo" building, which was constructed in 2011 using funds from the U.S. Department of Education's Title III Program.

The DeMaND project allowed ANC to increase its capacity to educate and train students in high demand and high wage fields. Students learned skills that local employers needed.

By the end of 2014, ANC's DeMAND program offerings had enrolled 212 students, 117 males and 95 females. With a retention rate of 79%, 167 students successfully completed their training program. Final project numbers are still being compiled, as the program officially ends September 30, 2015.

Project staff included Deb Eve, Bob Parsley, Sue Brown, Eugene Garcia and Tanya Buck. Shaun Bell taught welding, Robert Kittson taught carpentry and Jana McPherson taught health careers. The project contracted the services of Sage Trucking out of Billings, MT, to teach CDL classes.

Commenting on the project's success, ANC's DeMaND site director, Deb Eve, reported, "Although we did not have the student base that some of the consortium members had, we had great success in our programs, including high completion rates and gainful employment. These funds allowed us to create programs that became sustainable at the institution, providing the equipment and necessary startup so we are able to continue them. We have significantly added to our industrial trades program; the carpentry program was a one year certificate program but is now a two year degree, and the welding program was brand new, and in the four years of the project we went from no program to a two year AAS. We managed to complete five CDL courses and will offer one more this fall (75 students with CDL'S!) and will work with the Fort Belknap Tribe to continue to offer the course. The Allied Health programs added some great stackable certificates to their curricula - Phlebotomy and Certified Nurses Aide, and we have passed the Montana State Board of Nursing criteria for Phase I of a Registered Nursing program. All facets of the institution were involved with the program. We changed how we offer courses (block scheduling) and proved with the data that retention is much higher with block scheduling and the use of technology. We had to work with finance, registration, student services, academics and administration, along with our community partners to make this program work. I am confident we have achieved what the DOL program intended. I am very proud of what all we accomplished with this program."

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Aaniiih Nakoda College
P.O. Box 159        Harlem, MT 59526