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Over the past several years, Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College (NEO) and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) have developed a unique partnership to benefit Native American students. Through the partnership, UIUC offers the opportunity for a full-tuition transfer scholarship for Native American NEO students. To date, all students who have applied for the scholarship and have met the criteria have been accepted into the program. During the 2014 summer, Peoria Chief John Froman invited NEO to enter into a triangular partnership with the university and tribe based upon his belief that the college has proven successful in meeting the needs of Native American students. To further develop the partnership, UIUC Transfer Coordinator Holly Herrera will visit NEO on Friday, March 2, from 1-2 p.m. and 6:00 – 7:30 p.m. in the American Indian Center for Excellence in Kahne Hall to discuss the scholarship and transfer opportunities with UIUC. Director of the Native American House Nichole Boyd will join Herrera to provide one-on-one assistance for students and their families.

The NEO Illinois Heritage Scholarship provides five full tuition scholarships for up to three years of study for Native American tribal members and descendants. Preference is given to students who are members or descendants of tribes that were forcibly removed from Illinois. Transfer eligibility requires thirty or more credit hours with a cumulative 2.7 GPA.

Along with traditional programs on the UIUC campus, the University is also promoting a fully online bachelor’s degree in Earth, Society, and Environmental Sustainability (ESES). This program is available to all students and its capstone can be completed under the supervision of NEO faculty. ESES majors develop a broad set of skills that can lead to careers in Sustainable Business, Sustainability Policy, Earth Biosphere and Ecology, and more. For complete transfer information, visit https://admissions.illinois.edu/Apply/Transfer/process and to receive the application for the NEO Illinois Heritage Scholarship, contact Hannah Berryman at Hannah.Berryman@neo.edu. (Photo: Holly Herrera meets with students considering applying for the UIUC)

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