Native American Students from Genesee Community College Earn

The Native American Student Group (NASG) at Genesee Community College sponsored its Tenth Annual Student Achievement Ceremony where eight students were honored. Among the honors were two college scholarships and the first-ever President's Award for Accomplishment and Dedication.

Jamie Jacobs, a Tonawanda Seneca, and Loretta Smoke, a member of the St. Regis Mohawk tribe, each received a $250 scholarship from the Western New York Native American Scholarship Fund to continue their studies at Genesee Community College. Jamie is a drafting and engineering science major entering his second year in the fall. Loretta Smoke plans to receive her degree in Office Technology in May 2005 (see photo).

The Western New York Native American Student Group established this scholarship fund in 2002 through an agreement between the NASG and the Genesee Community College Foundation. The scholarship was created to provide financial assistance to support the academic success of students or prospective students at Genesee Community College who can document enrollment and/or affiliation with the Six Nations Tribes. The scholarship fund is made possible through individual donations, M & T Bank, and fundraising activities such as raffling a beautiful, homemade quilt (see photo).

Other awards went to Brenda Sundown, a Tonawanda Seneca, who received a stole and pin by the Native American Western Consortium in recognition of her graduation in May of 2004 from Genesee. Brenda plans to transfer to SUNY Brockport in the fall to major in Physical Education.

Becky LaFromboise, Wayne Abrams, Valerie Parker and Ruby Hallett joined Jamie, Loretta, and Brenda, in receiving Certificates of Achievement for their academic accomplishments during the academic year. Anne Tahamont, Tonawanda Seneca and graduate of Genesee, was also recognized for her May 2004 cum laude graduation from SUNY Fredonia where she earned a degree in Early Childhood/English Education.

In addition to his scholarship, Jamie Jacobs was also the first recipient of the Native American Student Group President's Award for Accomplishment and Dedication. This award recognized Jamie's exceptional service and contributions to his community.

The Native American Student Group was founded in 1993 to enhance the social, cultural, and academic environment for Native American students at Genesee Community College. College Recruitment Days, creating the Ely Parker Memorial Collection at the College's library, establishing the WNY Native American Scholarship Fund, and sponsoring community social events are among the activities coordinated by NASG. Funding for the group's programs has been provided by a grant from the State University of New York Native American Western Consortium, the Genesee Community College Student Government Association, and through individual donations from the group's fundraising efforts. NASG officers for this year were: Becky LaFromboise, President; Jamie Jacobs, Vice President; Loretta Smoke, Secretary; and Wayne Abrams, Treasurer.

For further information regarding the Native American Student Group, visit the following webpage: or call Victoria Campbell at (585) 345-6836. To make a gift to the Native American Scholarship Fund, please send it to the Genesee Community College Foundation, One College Road, Batavia, NY 14020.

For photos from the 10th Annual Native American Student Achievement Dinner at Bohn's Restaurant on May 7, 2004 please go to: Scholarship Recipients.jpgPhoto caption: Jamie Jacobs and Loretta Smoke each received a scholarship from the Western New York Native American Scholarship Fund. Pictured here from left to right are: Becky LaFromboise, NASG President; Victoria Campbell, NASG Advisor and Genesee Community College's Program Director of the Adult Educational Opportunity Center; Loretta Smoke, NASG Secretary; and Jamie Jacobs, NASG Vice President. Quilt Raffle Winner.jpgPhoto caption: NASG President Becky Lafromboise (left) is photographed with Dr. Claudia Moore (right), Executive Vice President of Academic Affairs for Genesee Community College, who won the Native American Handmade Quilt Raffle at the 10th Annual Student Achievement Dinner. All proceeds from the raffle went to support the Western New York Native American Scholarship Fund.