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Sealaska Heritage Institute awards $356,000 in scholarships

Sealaska Heritage Institute (SHI) has awarded approximately $356,000 in scholarships to Sealaska shareholders and descendants.

The awards, funded by Sealaska Corporation, will help students pursuing graduate and undergraduate degrees and voc-tech training for the 2010-2011 school year. A portion also will fund heritage studies, language studies and culture camps.

The scholarships for university and voc-tech studies went to 386 Alaska Natives, said Rosita Worl, president of SHI, which administers the scholarship program for Sealaska.

"Students who receive Sealaska Scholarships can be extremely proud as these awards are merit-based, and students who have higher GPAs and higher class standing receive larger awards," Worl said.

Additional scholarships will go to people enrolled in Northwest Coast design workshops, teacher workshops, performing arts studies and the institute's Latseen Hoop Camps, annual basketball camps that incorporate Native language training.

Sealaska Corporation is a regional Alaska Native corporation formed under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) of 1971. Scholarships are provided by Sealaska from a scholarship endowment and corporate 7 (i) sharing provisions established under ANCSA. Sealaska founded the nonprofit Sealaska Heritage Institute in 1980 to run the corporation's cultural and educational programs. The scholarship program is one of many programs operated by the institute. The scholarships are given annually, and the total award is based partly on income earned from the endowment.

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