MOSCOW, Idaho – Leaders from five institutions of higher education will come together Monday, March 24, to sign a memorandum of understanding, declaring their intention to cooperate in the delivery of quality education and services to American Indians.
 
The presidents of Lewis-Clark State College, North Idaho College, Northwest Indian College, the University of Idaho and WSU will gather at 2 p.m. at the Nez Perce National Historical Park Spalding site on the Nez Perce Reservation.
 
The signing ceremony, held from 2-3:30 p.m., will include opening and closing prayers by a tribal elder, a flag and eagle staff ceremony with a song by the Palouse Falls Nation Drum, and a traditional circle dance. A open public reception will follow the ceremony.
 
Under the agreement, the colleges and universities will work together on recruitment, retention, transition and graduation of American Indians will provide focused Native American studieswill collaborate on other programs or services relating to Native American education and outreach.
 
They will establish a joint committee, known as the Native American Collaborations Committee, which will report to the provosts of Lewis-Clark State College, North Idaho College, Northwest Indian College, the University of Idaho and WSU.
 
“We are very fortunate to have these fine institutions in close proximity to one another so that partnering is very feasible from a practical standpoint,” said Mary Collins, associate director of the Plateau Center for American Indian Studies at WSU. “Each of us has relatively small offerings, but collectively we have the potential to become one of the best programs in the country and certainly the best in addressing the traditional people of the Plateau.”
 
The park is located along the Clearwater River adjacent to the Nez Perce National Historical Park Visitor’s Center, 11 miles east of Lewiston on Highway 95.
 
To confirm attendance in advance, or for more information, contact Mary Collins at (509) 335-4314 or collinsm@wsu.edu.