A posting by Jovita Lee, NCAP Work Study Intern
Hello, my name is Jovita Lee. I am Diné College student pursuing my B.A. degree in Business Administration and as a student of the college, I recently was hired by the Navajo Cultural Arts Program (NCAP) as a work-study intern. When I received my assignment I made my way to NHC 101C, where the NCAP main office is located, to meet the grant manager, Christine Ami. I walked in and there were three ladies walking in circles around a table, unraveling yarn in to small balls. I did not know what to expect. But once I stepped in to the room of giggling ladies, who kinda looked like kittens chasing after balls of yarn, there was no turning back.
Christine told me to read up on the program through Facebook, Instagram and website to try to understand a little more about NCAP. The program missions statement states “The Navajo Cultural Arts Program (NCAP) intends to enhance and revitalize traditional Navajo cultural arts practices while providing opportunities for Navajo cultural arts knowledge holders and master artisans to share their unique skills in a multigenerational setting.” In order to do this…the program has 6 projects: a certificate program, a lecture series, a workshop series, an internship program, and a traveling exhibit. Through these projects NCAP provides their participants with the ability to learn unique traditional teachings, which I believe is core to our history and culture.
So as it turns out, the yarn I saw the ladies working on when I first walked into the NCAP office – not yarn… they were skeins of wool that were being prepared for the Emerging Artisans in NCAP weaving cohort. Now I take skeins home to roll. This has given my family big expectations. Every week I bring home a new bin of wool and now they are waiting for a finished product in the form of a giant colorful rug. I do have in-laws that weave but I have never taken the time to learn. I might have to sign up for one of the NCAP weaving workshops. There is one taking place on October 25th with the Spider Rock Girls so look out, family! ~ Jovita is going to come home with a mini weaving!!
Rolling wool is not all that I do. I do a lot of recruitment and I have tons of opportunity to meet all sorts of people. At the Navajo Nation Fair and Shiprock Fair I passed out flyers and NCAP goodies for the Dine College booth. These experiences have taught me how to better my communication skills with local community members and border town residents as I encouraged them to reconnect with their cultural arts. Working with the grant manager has also been very great. Christine is a super sweet lady with plenty of knowledge and I believe that I can get tons of experience and knowledge with NCAP and use those with my future endeavors.
So far this work-study experience has been great. It makes me want to take more NCAP and BASET classes so that I can put my B.A. teachings into real world experiences. I am looking forward to rest of the semester with the NCAP.