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The Dartmouth
June 17, 2024 | Latest Issue
The Dartmouth

Students visit in Native American fly-in

More than 60 prospective students arrived at the College Sunday as part of the Native American fly-in, one of three Dartmouth Bound programs.

Participants will spend three days on campus, visiting classes, learning about Dartmouth’s Native American studies program and attending panel discussions about being Native American at the College. Students will also learn how to construct a persuasive and comprehensive college application, in part through looking at past Dartmouth applications.

The fly-in program strives to give participants an understanding of the College’s history with Native American communities and help students determine whether Dartmouth is a place where they will feel comfortable for four years, said Steven Abbott, the Native outreach coordinator and associate director of admissions.

Of the around 50 students who participated in the program last year, more than half enrolled at Dartmouth.

Abbott said that the program’s popularity has grown, noting that more than 250 Native American students have applied each year.

One of the defining and most attractive features is its strong emphasis on community, Abbott said.

Prior to acceptance into the program, Amber Webb ’18 had never heard of Dartmouth. Webb found out about program through an email from the Cherokee Nation. Webb said she is glad she applied and appreciates the community here.

“I had never been particularly active with my tribe because I didn’t live in the center of our tribal affairs in my state, so it was really different for me to see a lot of people who identified as being Native,” she said. “Just having that sense of community from being [Native American] was so special.”

Micah Daniels ’18, who also participated in last year’s program, said that the emphasis on Dartmouth’s history as an institution committed to Native American education influenced his decision to apply to the College.

Daniels said a campus tour highlighted the size of Dartmouth’s Native American population — the largest in the Ivy League — and its Native American studies program.

“It was a school built for Native Americans,” she said.

Upon reflecting on her experience, Daniels cites the open friendliness of other Native students as a comforting and promising sign of a collegiate society conducive to the inclusion and preservation of Native culture.

“That’s what drew me here the most — just being able to have the community here and being able to feel as if it could be a second home,” she said.

Two additional fly-in programs, one focusing on science, technology, engineering and math exploration, have brought prospective students to campus since July.