- For questions about tuition, financial holds, books, etc. contact Savannah Sydney by email or at (928) 523-8033.
- For questions about academic holds and other advisor needs, contact Tomantha Horseherder by email or at (928) 523-6154.
- For technical or system questions, contact the Student Technology Center at:
American Indian School Leadership (AISL)
Opportunities for Native American students at Northern Arizona University
The American Indian School Leadership (AISL) program is a federally funded Master’s of Education program, specifically geared toward training Native American teachers to become highly effective principals serving in American Indian schools.
American Indian School Leadership Program (AISL) received a $1.4 million federal grant from the U.S. Department of Education in August 2021, to continue its work in preparing professionals specifically for Native American school leadership. Northern Arizona University’s aim is to more than triple the number of Native Americans serving as principals and school leaders. The curriculum is designed to prepare principals to actively lead in improved instruction and school change, not just manage programs and buildings. Enrolled students who are employed have the opportunity to earn their Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership-K-12 Administration without having to leave their current positions.
Why do we need programs like AISL?
- Financial instability prevents many Native American students from being able to commit to the rigors of a graduate-level education. Tribal scholarship funds cannot provide adequate financial support to help students meet daily living expenses and reduce financial barriers to enrollment or retention. Additionally, it is particularly difficult for part-time graduate students to obtain financial assistance.
- New principals need pre-service training that prepares them to lead improved instruction and school change, not just manage budgets and buildings. Recent results on the Arizona’s Instrument to Measure Standards (AIMS) test show Native American students lacking in all major areas measured (Arizona Department of Education AIMS Report, 2012).
Why NAU’s program?
Northern Arizona University (NAU) maintains a strong commitment to Native American and Indigenous students. NAU has seen a steady increase in enrollment of Native Americans, with a Fall 2020 enrollment of 892 (Duplicated Ethnicity/Race: 1,611) and a Native American Faculty and Staff count of 151 (Duplicated Ethnicity/Race: 194).
NAU continues to enroll one of the largest populations of Native American students among all four-year, public institutions in the United States. Among these same institutions, the 2019 Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) enrollment data reports showed that NAU’s Fall 2019 enrollment:
- Ranked 10th in total enrolled Native American students
- Ranked in the top 15 of enrolled undergraduate Native American students
- Ranked 4th of enrolled graduate Native American students
IPEDS Completions data reports for 2018-19, among all four-year, public institutions in the United States also shows that NAU ranked in the top 10 for the following degrees awarded:
- Ranked 10th for total degrees awarded to Native American students
- Ranked 7th for bachelor’s degrees awarded to Native American students
- Ranked 6th for Master’s/Doctorate’s degrees awarded to Native American students
The Native American student populations are diverse and have self-identified an affiliation with 113 different tribes, the largest contingents self-identifying as Navajo, Cherokee, Hopi and Apache tribes (NAU Institutional Research and Analysis).