U.S. Department of the Interior

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Office of the Assistant Secretary - Indian Affairs

For Immediate Release: July 31, 2003
Contact: Dan DuBray

Acting Assistant Secretary - Indian Affairs Aurene Martin
Joins Dedication Ceremony at Stone Child College on
Rocky Boy's Reservation in Montana

ROCKY BOY, MONTANA - Acting Assistant Secretary - Indian Affairs Aurene M. Martin traveled from the nation's capital to the Rocky Boy's Indian Reservation this afternoon at the personal invitation of Chippewa-Cree Business Committee chairman Alvin Windy Boy, Sr., for the dedication of a new $4 million campus of the Stone Child College.

Martin oversees a Department of the Interior program that has provided more than $1 million in operational grants to the administration of the tribal college in the current fiscal year. She says post-secondary education programs will be fundamental to the future economic security of Indian country.

"Supporting effective educational opportunities and improved facilities in Indian country remains a top priority for this administration," Martin said today. "The community at Rocky Boy has put a strong emphasis on post-secondary education, working hard to build a school with a wide-ranging curriculum. I am proud to represent the Department at this important event, which is a milestone for the people of this region."

The three new buildings to be dedicated on the Stone Child College campus include a 3,500 square foot cultural learning facility, a 13,300 square-foot student services building with community library and a 25,100-square foot academic and administration building. The school served an average of 350 students last year and awards associate degrees in a variety of academic programs.

Since assuming her leadership role for Indian Affairs programs at the Department of the Interior, Martin has provided a renewed emphasis for all educational programs, including the improvement and rehabilitation of facilities at schools funded by the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

The Assistant Secretary - Indian Affairs has responsibility for fulfilling the Department's trust responsibilities and promoting self-determination on behalf of the 562 federally recognized American Indian and Alaska Native tribal governments. The Assistant Secretary also oversees the Bureau of Indian Affairs, an agency with 10,500 employees nationwide, which is responsible for providing services to approximately 1.4 million individual American Indians and Alaska Natives from the federally recognized tribes.



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