Oglala Lakota College Celebrates 50th Graduation Ceremony

Oglala Lakota College (OLC) announces its 50th Annual Graduation Ceremony with 151 graduates receiving Masters, Bachelors, Associate Degrees and Certificates. This year the celebration will include a Feather Tying Ceremony and Baccalaureate on Thursday, June 15, 2023, beginning at 5:30 p.m. The Graduation Ceremony and Awarding of Degrees is on Friday, June 16, 2023, starting with the graduation procession at 10:00 a.m. The ceremonies will take place at OLC’s Piya Wiconi Administrative Campus southwest of Kyle, S.D.

Dr. Dawn Tobacco-Frank, OLC President, is pleased to announce Tatuye Topa Najin Win Means, Executive Director of Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation as the keynote speaker at the Graduation Ceremony to address the Class of 2023. Ms. Means received her Bachelor of Science degree from Stanford University in Environmental Engineering with a minor in Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity; Juris Doctor with a concentration in Human Rights Law from the University of Minnesota Law School; and Master of Arts degree in Lakota Leadership and Management from Oglala Lakota College. 

“Tatuye Topa Najin Win is one of our own who attended Oglala Lakota College, obtained a Juris Doctorate, and returned to work amongst her people. She is an excellent example of perseverance and grit!” stated Dr. Frank. Tatuye Topa Najin Win started her college journey while in high school when she received AA degrees in General Education, Pre-Medicine and Math, Science and Technology. 

Distinguished speakers who will offer a welcome statement to the graduating class include Frank Star Comes Out, OST President, and Dennis Brewer, OLC Board of Trustees President. Two graduating class members will share their journeys that brought them to this day. 

For more information on the Thursday evening events, contact Katelin Janis at 605-455-6022. For information on the Awarding of Degrees, contact Anthony Barajas at 605-455-6033 or Kacena One Horn at 605-455-6038 at the Registrar’s Office. The Graduation Wacipi Contest will take place June 16-18 at the Piya Wiconi Powwow grounds. Eyapaha for the powwow is Chris Eagle Hawk and Arena Director is Charlie White Buffalo. For more information on the Powwow contact Jonnie Clifford at 605-455-6047 or jclifford@olc.edu. All categories will be paid; first five drums who register before each Grand Entry will be paid; tiny tots will be paid day money and must be in full regalia. Walk/Run will be held on Saturday, June 17 with registration at 9:30 a.m. For more information contact Myreen Iron Cloud at 605-455-6045.

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