Sealaska announced today that it will award $1.2 million in scholarships to 426 recipients for the 2022-2023 school year. Scholarships were awarded to full- and part-time degree-seeking students as well as students enrolled in vocational-technical programs. Sealaska prioritizes investing in education and is dedicated to supporting Indigenous students seeking to further their education.
Sealaska partners with Sealaska Heritage Institute (SHI) to provide scholarships and other educational programs to benefit shareholders and descendants. Scholarships are funded by Sealaska and administered by SHI. Scholarship funding comes from the investment performance of Sealaska’s Scholarship endowment fund, which was established in 1989. As of 2019, awards are available to both full- and part-time students.
An increasing number of “nontraditional” students have been awarded Sealaska scholarships in recent years, seeking to advance professionally by pursuing advanced degrees or finding new educational experiences mid-career. Tasha (Wuduyeey) Heumann is one such student: this year, for the first time, she is a Sealaska scholarship recipient. Heumann is the mother of a toddler and is expecting her second child in July. As the community outreach and brand manager at Sealaska, Heumann regularly works to provide information about opportunities such as scholarships to shareholders. She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in business with a specialization in marketing data analytics from Colorado State University.
“Returning to school as a nontraditional student means juggling academics, my career and a growing family,” said Heumann. “This time, though, I am honored to be a Sealaska scholarship recipient. I hung the letter on my fridge – that moment, seeing that my corporation believes in me and is willing to invest in my future – really affirmed that I’m on the right path despite the countless sacrifices it has taken me to get here.”
She joins 34 other scholarship recipients pursuing a master’s degree, one of the highest number of advanced degree seekers the Sealaska scholarship program has ever seen. Heumann said she hopes to encourage others to pursue their educational goals, no matter where they are on their personal, professional or academic path.
“King̱eestí David Katzeek would say ‘haa tóo yéi yatee’ – it is inside of us,” said Heumann, who oversees Sealaska’s language-revitalization program and is a beginning Lingít learner. “It is never too late to chase another dream. The chase may include a toddler pattering alongside you, but what an incredible journey it will be nonetheless. I am and will be forever grateful for the opportunity.”
About Sealaska’s Scholarship Program
Sealaska is dedicated to advancing the opportunities of our people through access to higher education and vocational training. The Sealaska scholarship program serves shareholders and descendants enrolled full or part time in vocational-technical programs and accredited colleges and universities. To date, Sealaska has committed $26.5 million to its scholarship fund and awards 400-plus scholarships per year. For full program information and eligibility requirements, please visit MySealaska.com.