By Risa Johnson
Sewa Contreras, a student of California Indian Nations College prepare to take a class at UC Riverside Palm Desert Campus on September 9, 2019. (Photo: Omar Ornelas/ USA Today Network)
The California Indian Nations College is celebrating its one-year anniversary on Saturday with “Gathering Under the Stars.”
The event, which will be free and open to the public, promises Native American arts and crafts, performers, artists, authors, and free food. There will be opportunities to meet founders of the college, partners, students and staff.
The event will take place from 4 to 7 p.m. at the college, located on the UC Riverside Palm Desert Center campus at 750080 Frank Sinatra Drive in Palm Desert. Free parking will be available.
The two-year community college first offered classes in fall 2018, founded with seed money from the Twenty-Nine Palms Band of Mission Indians. About 70 students are enrolled at the campus this fall, nearly double the amount of the previous year.
Almost all of the students are from the Coachella Valley, and most are Native American, according to administrators. The college is open to all and scholarships are available.
The national college enrollment rate in 2017 for American Indians was the lowest of any ethnicity group, at 20%, compared with 65% for Asian young adults and 41% of white young adults, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
Students of California Indian Nations College prepare to take a class at UC Riverside Palm Desert Campus on September 9, 2019. (Photo: Omar Ornelas/ USA Today Network)
Risa Johnson covers Native American affairs in the Coachella Valley and beyond. She can be reached at email@example.com or (760) 778-4737. Follow her on Twitter @risamjohnson