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SMSC Supports Education Programs for Local Youth

High School Graduation Events, Scholarships, and Other Projects Funded
Date: 
Monday, June 6, 2011

Prior Lake, MN - Out of a concern for the well-being of youth, the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community, a federally recognized Indian tribe located in Prior Lake, Minnesota, has donated a total of $380,223 for educational activities including high school graduation events so far this fiscal year.

Twelve local high schools received funding for alcohol and chemical-free graduation events. This year the SMSC helped sponsor senior class parties with donations to high schools in the local area including Prior Lake, Shakopee, Burnsville, Delano, Eastview (Apple Valley), Kennedy (Bloomington), Lakeville North, Lakeville South, Monticello, New Prague, South Saint Paul, and the School of Environmental Studies (Apple Valley). Each year the SMSC supports these parties at the request of event organizers.

In addition, the SMSC helped sponsor the 25th annual American Indian College Graduation Celebration that honors American Indians in the Twin Cities who are graduating from college.

In Shakopee, the SMSC has also helped sponsor SMART Boards at the Shakopee Area Catholic School, the Shakopee Educational Endowment Foundation, the Shakopee Hockey Blue Line Club, Shakopee Mat Club (wrestling), Shakopee Dollars for Scholars, and an early childhood literacy program for Shakopee Public Schools #720. A grant for $10,000 paid for construction of green initiatives for the Shakopee Educational Learning Center at the High School.

In Prior Lake, the SMSC has helped sponsor the Prior Lake Robotics youth robotic team, the Prior Lake Savage Area Education Foundation for funding of the observatory dome, Prior Lake Savage Hockey Association for a youth hockey tournament, Prior Lake Youth Wrestling for uniforms, Friends of McColl Pond for field trips, the Second Step Program and a SMART Response Interactive System for math class at Hidden Oaks Middle School, and the Prior Lake Rotary Club D.A.R.E fundraiser.

Other local educational donations include $25,000 to the Carver Scott Education Cooperative for vans; the Minnesota Association for Environmental Education conference; child CPR and choking mannequins for the Minnesota River Valley Educational Cooperative; Mothers Against Drunk Driving Minnesota Youth Jam; a summer program for the Bloomington Public Schools Indian Education Program; winter coats and school supplies for low-income American Indian students in the Minneapolis and St. Paul Public Schools; and the New Prague Area Hockey Association for youth hockey.

In other areas, the SMSC has funded a class trip to Washington, D.C., for students at the American Horse School; a football program at Haskell Indian Nations College; computers for the Boys & Girls Club on the Spirit Lake Nation; winter coats for students at Circle of Nations Wahpeton Indian School; computer equipment for the Naytahwaush Community Charter School; youth sports through the Notah Begay III Foundation; the literacy program Reach Out and Read; a pre-admissions workshop at the University of Minnesota Center of American Indian and Minority Health; and Ojibwe language signage for Walker Hackensack Akeley School District 113.

Scholarship programs which the SMSC supported in FY2011 include: Catching the Dream, South Dakota Schools of Mines and Technology, Dunwoody College of Technology, Inver Grove Heights B.E.S.T. Scholarship, Page Education Foundation, Turtle Mountain Dollars for Scholars, and the University of Kansas School of Social Welfare. The SMSC has also created an Endowed Scholarship at the University of Minnesota which has funded 28 students thus far.

The Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community has a charitable giving program which comes from a cultural and social tradition to assist those in need. Over the past 15 years, the SMSC has donated more than $215.7 million to charitable organizations and Indian Tribes and Native American organizations.

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