Meet Our IKEEP Scholars
I am an enrolled member of the Colville tribe.
I want to become a teacher because I want to help make a difference in the lives of as many children as I can. I believe all children should have the opportunity to receive the best education possible. I want to encourage and inspire students to reach their full potential and succeed in life.
Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribe
I want to be a teacher because it is a profession where you can truly enjoy every day helping young people learn and grow, and you are in a position to inspire someone to change the world for the better.
Member of the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes from Fort Hall, Idaho.
I am a mother, wife, daughter, big sister and nontraditional student at the University of Idaho. I want to become a teacher because within my tribal community, as well as many others, it is needed. I have gone into my academic journey in higher education with the upbringing of what can I bring back to my community. As a teacher, I want to implement traditional practices and perspectives into the classroom, working with students holistically, developing culturally relevant curriculum, and celebrating indigenous knowledge. I want to develop the skill set to interweave tribal oral tradition, storytelling, language, traditional artistry, and other traditional practices into a heavily westernized education system, having my classrooms reflect the students and communities I will serve. I want to participate in change within the academic institution so that Native American students will not feel the need to compromise any part of themselves in order to be successful in education.
From Pendleton Oregon. I want to become a teacher because I want to be able to have students relate to the people that are helping and being a Native teaching Native students would help them want to be more successful.
Member of the Nez Perce from Lapwai, Idaho.
It is important for me to develop this experience of being a teacher so that I can create and or help be a part of that change in western education to strengthen our future generations. My future goal is to return to my community and be a part of the Nez Perce Tribal Executive Committee (NPTEC) and assure a better education that effectively accommodates to both western and indigenous knowledge systems.
I am an Inupiaq Eskimo.
I am from Palmer Alaska and my major is secondary education with in emphasis in math. I want to become an educator because I want to make connections like my previous teachers did with me. The time and dedication they put into me pushed my decision to go to college and further my education. They were able to see my potential and what I was capable of and helped me become the person I am today. As a future educator, I want to provide the same type of space for children and their families to grow in a positive environment. I can’t wait to do the same thing with my future students.
ah qhest, hist khwist khwe Sharniko SiJohn chin tel Schitsu'umsh.
Hello, my name is Sharniko Sijohn 'Nikko' I'm a Coeur d' Alene tribal member and 26 year old mother of three children. I'm grateful for the opportunity to be a part of the IKEEP program. There's a few reasons why I chose to pursue to become a teacher. My biggest motivator is the love that I have for my children & the rest of our children within the tribe. I want to help. Plain and simple. I've always known that I wanted to pursue a career that helped others, I was just never sure in what direction I should go. After working for my tribe’s culture and language programs I realized that my calling is to help our tribal members learn our language and stay connected with who we are as Coeur d' Alenes and as Indigenous people.
Member of the Shoshone-Paiute tribe.
The reason I want to be a teacher is because I want to be able to make an impact on my native community through sports and physical education. My past coaches/teachers have inspired me to do what they do. They have had a positive influence on the community. I want to do the same by spreading the importance of education, culture/tradition, and physical education from native youth to elders.
Camille Irene Wynecoop
Member of the Spokane Tribe
I am a mother to 5 beautiful children ranging from 13 to 28, two sons and three daughters. I grew up in Lapwai Idaho and graduated there in 1986. I decided to go to Flight Attendant school in Minneapolis in 1988 and graduated the same year. Then went to a vocational school for business management, but the school closed. I went to school in Moscow to obtain my B.S. in Early Childhood Development and Education, graduating in 2005. I have worked in the Early Childhood arena ever since. I was a director of a before and after school program for Headstart, then ventured off to be a Program Director for a Private school's before and after, Preschool, PM Kindergarten, and summer programs. I also worked with families of young children for a program called Parents As Teachers, and work with families in a program called ECEAP. I currently sub at Wellpinit School District in Wellpinit WA for K-12. Now I have decided to fulfill my dream of receiving a master's degree. After, I would like to continue teaching as being an educator has always been my passion I never knew existed, because I only held positions as a director or manager of varying programs, but pursuing a degree to become a principal or superintendent of the school where I currently teach is another dream of mine. I enjoy working with families and children in any perspective.