Jewish Labor Committee Participates in Program to Aid American Indian Youth

A scholarship and orientation program for American Indian youth, sponsored by Labor’s Committee for Indian Youth in cooperation with the Jewish Labor Committee, is helping to provide academic or vocational training for larger numbers of youngsters living on reservations. According to Louis E. Berman, regional director of the Jewish Labor Committee, there is a decrease in high school drop-outs among Indian youth participating in the program and a correspondent increase in the number who go on to higher education.

A report from Erwin Mittelholtz, Indian guidance consultant of the State Department of Education, said that over 243 Indian high school graduates were attending colleges and universities this year on the scholarship program and over 180 were taking vocational training. Since 1958, over 100 Indians earned bachelor degrees and nearly 20 of them their master’s degrees.

Each year Indian youth who are high school seniors visit the Twin Cities and tour vocational schools, colleges, hospitals and potential sources of employment. Of 34 Indian girls and 17 boys who made the tour last fall, all went on to higher education. Not one of the students who made the trip dropped out and all who applied for advanced work beyond high school were accepted, Mr. Mittelholtz reported.

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