Chickasaw Nation takes steps to revitalize its native language

Even though the Chickasaw Nation counts more than 60,000 tribal members, less than 50 speak their native language.

The Chickasaw Nation, the 12th largest federally recognized Indian tribe in the United States, which is headquartered in Ada, has enlisted Rosetta Stone Inc. to create a new customized program that will revitalize the Chickasaw language.

The educational tool is being developed exclusively for The Chickasaw Nation and will feature custom content enabling its global citizens to be introduced to their heritage language.

A total of 80 lessons will be jointly created by Rosetta Stone and tribal leaders over the next two years, with the first 40 to be delivered in the fall of 2016.

The announcement was first made earlier this month by Chickasaw Nation Gov. Bill Anoatubby during his “State of the Nation” address, a highlight of the tribe’s 55th Annual Meeting, held in Tishomingo.

“It is essential to revitalize our Chickasaw language and preserve it for future generations because so much of our culture is bound up in the knowledge of our language,” said Anoatubby. “We believe a collaboration between our fluent speakers and Rosetta Stone will be a significant step toward ensuring our language is documented and accessible for future generations. This relationship with Rosetta Stone offers an excellent opportunity for meaningful growth in our language programs.”

The Chickasaw Nation has an annual economic impact of more than $2.4 billion in Oklahoma. The tribe has more than 13,000 employees. A democratic republic with executive, legislative and judicial departments, the tribe's jurisdictional territory includes all or part of 13 counties in south-central Oklahoma. Visit www.chickasaw.net for more information about the tribe.

Sam Noble Scholarship applications now available

ARDMORE — Four years of college costs about $75,772 for tuition, fees, and room and board. (This doesn’t include personal expenses like shampoo, gas or fun.) The Noble Foundation wants to help.

Entering its 18th year of assisting students, the foundation's Sam Noble Scholarships are available to eligible southern Oklahoma students in all stages of higher education — from incoming freshmen to those seeking graduate degrees.

The Sam Noble Scholarship Program supports students from southern Oklahoma as they strive toward achieving associate degrees from technical institutes or agriculture-related bachelors or graduate degrees. Sam Noble scholars pursuing a future in agriculture may study subjects ranging from communications and economics to agribusiness and biosystems agricultural engineering. For scholars focused on technology certifications or degrees, available fields extend across the spectrum of vocations, including computer information systems, photography, high-voltage electricity and more.

Since 1999, more than 188 Oklahoma students studying agriculture and technology have been awarded scholarships in excess of $2.4 million.

Scholarships for students seeking undergraduate degrees in agriculture-related fields provide $2,500 of support per semester for up to nine semesters, while scholarships for graduate students offer $3,125 per semester for up to five semesters.

Applicants must pursue their education at a university awarding baccalaureate or higher degrees through a division or college of agriculture, such as Oklahoma State University, Oklahoma Panhandle State University, Texas Tech University (Lubbock campus) or Texas A&M University (College Station campus).

Scholarships for those seeking degrees or certifications from technical institutes are for $3,750 per year for up to two years.

The applicant must pursue this degree or certification at Oklahoma State University’s Oklahoma City or Okmulgee campus.

To be eligible to receive a scholarship, a student must plan to attend or be attending a qualifying university or technology training institution during the 2016-2017 academic year. The student must also be a resident of one of the following southern Oklahoma counties: Atoka, Bryan, Carter, Choctaw, Coal, Garvin, Jefferson, Johnston, Love, Marshall, McCurtain, Murray, Pontotoc, Pushmataha or Stephens.

Requests for applications for the Sam Noble Scholarships in agriculture and technology may be submitted online at www.noble.org/sam-noble-scholarship. Questions regarding the scholarship can be directed by email to scholarships@noble.org.

Completed scholarship applications must be received on or before Feb. 15, 2016.

The scholarship program is named in honor of the late Sam Noble, who created the program through a gift to the Noble Foundation. Sam Noble was a longtime member of the Noble Foundation Board of Trustees and a son of Lloyd Noble, who founded the organization in 1945.

“Sam Noble believed a quality education was one of the keys to leading a successful life,” said Bill Buckner, president and CEO of the Noble Foundation. “He once said, ‘An excellent education is something that no one can ever take away from you; you can use it for the rest of your life.’”

IQOR to host latest blood drive in Ada Nov. 24

With the Bedlam football game approaching, Oklahoma Blood Institute is giving everyone the chance to get their game on. Each blood donor at IQOR from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 24, will receive a 2015 special edition OU or OSU T-shirt. All will be entered to win a pair of tickets to the 2015 Bedlam football game in Stillwater.

The event is sponsored by IQOR, located at 3700 IRT Drive in Ada. The OBI Bloodmobile will be in the parking lot, and the public is encouraged to attend.

All healthy adults, 16 years and older**, are urged to give. Donations take about an hour and can be made every 56 days.

Oklahoma Blood Institute is Oklahoma’s blood center, exclusively providing all blood needed by patients in 150 medical facilities across the state.

Donors can opt to forgo the T-shirts. Funds designated for them will be directed to an international charity, Global Blood Fund, a nonprofit that provides blood center technology and supplies to struggling blood centers around the world so they can meet local needs through voluntary blood donation.

 Appointments are encouraged and can be made at obi.org or by calling (877) 340-8777.

*Blood donation is voluntary, and no contribution, donation, purchase or payment is necessary to enter prize drawing.

 **16-year-olds must weigh at least 125 and provide signed parental permission; 17-year-olds must weigh at least 125 pounds; 18-year-olds and older must weigh at least 110 pounds

Free film screening Monday at McSwain Theatre

“Martian Child,” starring John Cusack, will be screened at 6:30 p.m. Monday at the McSwain Theatre.

Presented by the Chickasaw Nation, the free screening is offered in conjunction with Adoption Awareness Month.

Tribal foster care and adoption staff will be in attendance with information about their programs.

Free popcorn and a drink will be available for the first 100 attendees.

Doors open at 6 p.m.

The 2007 movie stars Cusack as David Gordon, a science-fiction writer who adopts a 10-year-old boy who believes himself to be from Mars.

Gordon and his wife were pursuing adoption until her death. He decides to resume his pursuit of adoption and is matched with Dennis, a boy who lives at a group home.

As Gordon teaches Dennis how to be an "earthling," father and son earn each other's trust and eventually find someone who will love them unequivocally.

The McSwain Theatre is located at 130 W. Main in Ada.

For more information, contact Kendra Lowden at (580) 272-5550 or Kendra.Lowden@Chicka­saw.net.

Great American Smokeout Luncheon on tap Nov. 18

From 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday, the Great American Smokeout Luncheon will be held at the Chickasaw Nation Community Center, 700 N. Mississippi Ave, Ada. Lunch will be provided.

Imtiaz Ahmed, MD and Debbie Houlette, MS, RDN, LD, will speak on topics related to smoking cessation and healthy food choices.

RSVP by email to Belinda.runnells@mercy.org or by phone at (580) 421-1467.