I have been on my own since Jonas returned to Portland and I found myself on the Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute campus interviewing students with my production assistant Kelly B.
The campus is quiet because classes are over, but we make time to get stories about the new head start facilities on campus(which is available for the students) and we managed to run into a few of the dedicated science students still working on their projects and research. We were fortunate enough to see and get information about the Advanced Technical Education at SIPI and talked about the latest awards and breakthroughs with Dr. Nader Vadiee, as he gave alumni tours and demonstrations at the new Science and Technology building. They are really into the practicum learning in renewable energies here, but that is a totally different blog item/story to be told soon.
My best time was sitting in on graduation rehearsal and the actual graduation ceremonies on Friday. There was a meet and greet in the Hogan located on campus prior to commencement that had staff, administration, state/tribal/and national government leaders, parents and a hummingbird seemingly trapped in the rafters above. Someone mentioned that in Navajo philosophy the hummingbird is there to ease the mind and clear our thoughts. It was clear these students we were celebrating and sending off to the real world worked hard and finished their degrees with the hopes and visions to continue their educations at 4-year colleges or go on and apply their educations to their own endeavors. I had a great time with a great group of students and staff. There are many hidden gems in New Mexico and SIPI is surely one of them.