The Native American Program is excited to welcome a new class of indigenous students to the community! There are thirty-nine self-identified Indigenous students in Dartmouth’s Class of 2022.
This class is a diverse group, with students representing 23 different tribal nations and indigenous communities. There are twenty-four U.S. states and territories represented, spanning the hemisphere from Maine to Alaska, North Carolina to Guam. The Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma has the highest representation in this year, followed by Blackfeet and Yu’pik.
Steven Abbott, Associate Director of Admissions & Coordinator of Native/Indigenous Outreach, has been working with many of these students through the recruiting and admissions cycle. Abbott says that It has been an amazing process seeing this community and class come together – stretching back through Dimensions, the Fly-In and (at least in some cases) to relationships that go back many years.
The Class of 2022 is the most selective in Dartmouth’s history, with the acceptance rate dropping below nine percent. Over half of the Native and Indigenous students in the Class of 2022 participated in this year’s NAP Pre-Orientation Program that ran from September 1-4.
The purpose of the NAP Pre-Orientation is to connect incoming Native American, Alaskan Native, Native Hawaiian, and the Indigenous freshman with the key offices and resources that will guide and support them throughout college. Students also had many opportunities for bonding during the four days, including some fun outings to an organic farm where students made their own pizzas, an afternoon of games and fun at Storrs Pond, ice cream before the always needed Walmart run, and community dinners at the Native American House.
Evan Barton ’20, one of the three peer mentors who helped support the weekend, said, “Pre-Orientation was a great opportunity to engage with the new class of indigenous students as they transition into this new chapter of life. Knowing the resources that you have access to at Dartmouth is essential during your time here, and that is the knowledge we hoped to provide. In addition, we hoped to connect students with one another, and from my perspective, I think we accomplished that. When I did Native Pre-Orientation, I was connected with someone from my home state who ended up being a close friend and mentor to me in my first year. The activities and programming build a foundation of support within each class so that they at least know someone at the start of their first term. Pre-Orientation is great exposure to the opportunity and healthy challenges students will face at Dartmouth.”