Northwest Indian College to host benefit dinner and auction, career fair

Northwest Indian College announced it is hosting two events toward the end of April: a career fair and a benefit dinner with a Native cultural arts and experiences auction.

TL’aneq: Gathering for a Celebration

On April 28, the college will host the 4th annual TL’aneq: Gathering for a Celebration benefit dinner and Native cultural arts and experiences auction, the school’s largest fundraiser of the year.

The event will be held in the Semiahmoo Ballroom.

“TL’aneq is a celebration gathering that brings together people from all walks of life and experiences with the Lummi Nation and other Coastal Nations and people from throughout Whatcom County to support student success through cultural education,” Cheryl Crazy Bull, NWIC president, said in an April 16 press release. “It is one of the rare opportunities that we have as diverse people to help NWIC create new programs, build new buildings and honor traditional knowledge.”

Last year, event sponsors and guests helped the college raise more than $120,000, which went toward NWIC’s higher education vision and cultural arts programs.

The college’s goal for this year’s event is to raise at least $150,000.

Community members can support the college by contributing Coast Salish art to the auction or by purchasing tickets for $250 or sponsor tables for $2,500 or $5,000.

The funds raised at the event will be used to help match a $500,000 award from the National Endowment for the Humanities for NWIC’s Coast Salish Institute, which preserves and revitalizes Coast Salish culture.

College officials expect 250 philanthropic, civic and tribal leaders to attend the event. Guests may bid on a handful of experiential auction items and Coast Salish art items or raise their auction paddles to make direct gifts to the college.

The event is sponsored by the Lummi Indian Business Council, Tulalip Tribes, the Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation, Boeing Co., Cheryl Crazy Bull, Alex Prue, Tom and Judy Mich, as well as the Stillaguamish Tribe of Indians.

For more information, contact Tess Crazy Bull at 360-392-4217 or email

The NWIC-NOAA Career Fair

The college is also teaming up with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for a career fair featuring representatives from universities, companies and organizations including Seattle University School of Law, the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Puget Sound Energy.

The career fair will begin with an evening social and networking event at 4 p.m. on April 23. It will run from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. from April 24-25.

The event features several speakers, including actress and activist Q’orianka Kilcher and professional soccer player and model Temryss Lane.

Kilcher, who is of Quechua-Huachipaeri decent, stared as Pocahontas in the 2005 film, “The New World” when she was 14 years old.

In addition to acting, she is also known for her commitment to human rights and the environment. She has been a featured speaker for organizations such as Amazon Watch, Amnesty International and the United Nations.

Kilcher isn’t your typical young Hollywood star, said Steve Pavlik, NWIC Native American studies instructor. She has devoted her life to environmental and human rights activism.

“I wanted her to speak because she is an exemplary role model for young people and especially Native youth,” Pavlik said. “For Q, her activism is not a whim or a moment to be exploited for publicity—it is her passion. She is charismatic, bright, articulate, firery, and completely devoted to making the world a better place.”

Lane, a Lummi tribal member, was a professional soccer player and contributor to Fox Soccer Channel. She is also a Nike N7 representative and a Native American advocate.

Kilcher will speak on April 24, and Lane will speak on April 25.

For questions about the career fair, call 360-392-4265 or email More information is also online at

Those interested in becoming exhibitors or presenters can contact Nathanael Davis at 360-392-4271 or email


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