NCA197 Navajo Cultural Arts Practicum Student, Weaver
Weaving is a significant part of my life and my identity. My weaving knowledge and skills were passed on to me through my maternal and paternal clans. As such, the pandemic made me think about the intergenerational wisdom and traditional knowledge I posses, and how do I contextualize this wisdom and knowledge for future generations. Thus, I reached out to Dine College as its mission is to help the well-being of the community.
In response to the pandemic, Dine College offered on-line classes, discounted tuition by 50%, waived certain fees, and offered other incentives to support students to keep cultural alive. With these incentives, I enrolled in the Navajo Cultural Arts Program. Less than a year into the program, I have discovered so much about myself. The courses helped me figure out what it means to be a Dine cultural artist and the cultural responsibilities that comes with it. The program provided insight into the art world—along with the critiques and criticisms. Moreover, I enhanced my weavings skills and learned new skills. Overall, the program helped to replenish my sole, connect me back to who I am and where I came from, and where I am to go from here.