American Indian Leadership Conference

Submitted by brenda.beyal on Mon, 03/21/2016 - 12:09

Last Thursday evening, our students participated in the Title VII American Indian Leadership Conference held at Jordan High School in Sandy, Utah.  The theme for the conference was, “Voices of the Future.”  The keynote address by Dr. Orrenzo Snyder M.D., Navajo-Dine’ gave timeless advice and encouragement to all in attendance as he spoke about lending a powerful voice to the future.

Dr. Synder reflected on his childhood on the Navajo Reservation with his grandmother.  Her influence and teachings kept him from giving up on the pursuit of education. “Who would have thought that a Navajo boy whose first language was Navajo, living in a home without running water and electricity could become a doctor of urology?” Dr. Synder mused.  When he asked his grandmother what he should do after graduating from Whitehorse High school, she simply said, “Go to school.”  And so he did. Dr. Synder told those in attendance; find a support system whether it be family or friends, do what you have to do to get where you want to be and dream big.  His advice to all those in attendance was to share, share, share, and leave competing with one another behind.  “We need to be united to make progress,” he said.

The evening culminated with high school students across the Wasatch Front receiving recognition for their achievement in academics, performing arts, service, cultural arts and leadership.  Each student was given a few moments to voice what their plans were for the future. Our students did a beautiful job giving powerful voice their future plans.  We are proud of them.  It was a wonderful evening for all.   

Photos by Christy Thompson, Brenda Beyal