Chantel Hill

Apsáalooke (Crow) Nation & Kainai (Blood) Nation

Hometown: Billings, Montana

Degree received from WSU: BA in Social Science…currently working on k-8 teacher certification.

Photo of Chantel HillWhy did you choose WSU?  WSU chose me, I heard about a project called the Ti’tooqan Cuukweneewit a Native teaching and learning project to become certified educators to teach and prepare us to go back and serve the Indigenous/ Native communities. So, I applied and was accepted to WSU and the project.

What did you enjoy most about being a WSU student? It’s hard to just pick one thing I enjoyed. Meeting new people who have become friends, experiencing and learning about new cultures. Getting involved in student involvement/government and learning a lot about the ins and outs of what it takes to run a student org. Getting to participate and listen to students who are our future leaders and being in awe of how much passion they had for their communities and not afraid to speak up. I’m grateful for all the experiences and learning I did while going to school at WSU.

What activities/programs were you involved with while at WSU?   Native American Women’s Association & Ku-Ah-Mah, I was the co-chair for Ku-Ah-Mah which is the Associated Students of WSU (ASWSU) Native American student organization on Pullman campus. I helped plan various cultural events including the annual round dance, and the first annual Indigenous celebration in collaboration with WSU dining services to bring students a taste of Indigenous first foods to campus. I was one of many who contributed to petitioning WSU to abolish Columbus Day and acknowledge & honor Indigenous People’s day on campus.

Did any particular WSU program make an impact in your success as a student?  Ti’tooqun Cuukweneewit project, WSU Native Programs, Women’s center, ASWSU, Aspiring Teacher Leadership and Success (ATLAS) program, and the College of Education.

What was your biggest challenge to achieving your education and how did you overcome it? Learning how to study and prioritize course assignments. I am a non-traditional student and had been out of school for some time before coming back to finish. I had to relearn how to study, felt like the oldest in some of my classes, felt intimidated by classmates almost my son’s age and learning how to navigate campus was overwhelming at first. I put in the work, went to class and studied hard. Because of this I was able to obtain scholarships and made the president’s list every semester.

What are your future plans? Working on k-8 teacher certification to become a teacher. Once I complete my certification, I hope to work for a nearby tribal community or possibly in the Spokane area.

What advice would you give a freshman? Go to class, study, apply for scholarships and get involved.