Today was really great! I felt a very positive energy this morning when everyone started arriving and I was so stoked to meet everyone at orientation. Theatre class was a great way to start the program because it brought us all together as a group and allowed us to break out of our shells. Although the heat was draining for all of us, I believe that we handled the rest of the day nicely. It was laid back, in a sense, but it was also an opportunity to get to know each other and socialize. Good night, and get ready for this week!
My name is Alysha White and I will be one of your mentors this year! I am from the Diné Nation of St. Michael’s/Ganado, Arizona, but grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Growing up in the Land of Enchantment, not only did I grow up engaging in my Native culture, but I was also deeply engaged in my New Mexican culture. For instance, I would attend Mariachi performances at the theatre, eat New Mexican style foods (HOT CHILI!!!), and listen to Hispanic music while enjoying dinner at Sadie’s (a popular, authentic New Mexican restaurant). I love the fact that I grew up in New Mexico because there is such a rich culture there that I identify with easily but I also love my Native culture. I enjoy participating in traditional ceremonies such as Peyote Meetings and coming of age ceremonies as well as learning the Navajo language. To me, it is important that I keep learning more about my ancestors and traditions so I can pass them down to my children. I am currently in the Interdisciplinary Film and Digital Media Program (IFDM) at the University of New Mexico, which integrates Film Production and Business Marketing.
This will be my 4th time at the Native Youth to College Program, my 2nd as a mentor. I thoroughly enjoy coming back to Pitzer every year because this program allows me to engage in cultural traditions that I would not have known about if I had not attended this program. You all are going to have so much fun at this program, whether it is your 1st year or your 3rd year and I cannot wait to see everyone!!
When Your Boss Tells You to “Throw Dem Up”…
What a wonderful day and a half we had at Wishtoyo! I am definitely thankful to have gone back once again because the last time I went was one of the BEST experiences of my life. Learning about the Chumash culture and living in the village for as long as we did was a true blessing. I am also very grateful for the opportunity to return to this program as a mentor for not only my benefit but for the benefit of the students who I have been lucky enough to build a relationship with.
While at Wistoyo, I made an abalone necklace which is very sacred to the Chumash people. The last time I came, I made an abalone shell basket and this time I got to carve a necklace design which was super awesome and enlightening. I also got to make a clapper stick out of an elderberry branch from scratch which was an entirely new experience for me. I have made two clapper sticks in the past but they were already cut out for me (all I did was design it) but this time, I got to carve it out myself in addition to designing it.
One lesson that I will take away with me and share with others is the idea of saying out loud what I am thankful for and what I am looking forward to in the future. It’s not often that I get to do that, which might be one of the reasons I get down on myself sometimes. Even though I occasionally pray to my creator, I do not get to talk to myself about what I am thankful for. So I think it is really important for everyone to remind themselves what blessings they have received in their lives in order to make them hope for greater things in the future.
My favorite cultural experience was morning ceremony. It was the most awake I have felt my entire time at the program and I felt nothing but exciting energy. I came out before 7 AM with my clapper stick and my love…which made my happy to be awake and sharing my happiness with others. As soon as we all stood in a circle, I felt nothing but beautiful blessing and I could not have asked for a better morning (plus the weather was SO BEAUTIFUL and PERFECT that I did not want to leave ever again!!)
Blogging Prompt for Wishtoyo Trip
Reflect on your entire experience at the Wishtoyo Village.
- Did you make any of the crafts? Which ones and how was that experience?
- What teachings resonated with you during your stay (what teachings/lessons did you relate to the most)?
- What was your favorite cultural experience of the entire trip?
- Post a picture of your visit.
200 words minimum
Relaxing in Tucson
At the University of Arizona, there are lots of ways to relax. We have a huge recreational center in the middle of our campus that if you’re a student, you get unlimited access to all the courts, weight rooms, and tracks. Football season is during the fall, so you can get discounts on the games OR you can buy the ZonaZoo pass for $250 which gives you admission to all the home games for ANY sport ALL year!
We also have malls nearby and movie theaters that I tend to go to all the time… Plus, I tend to go to Mount Lemon or “A” Mountain to enjoy the view of the city.
Blogging Prompt for July 19
There comes a time in college when you just need to take a break and relax. Some ways that college students take time for themselves is by going to the gym, shopping, or enjoying a movie.
Look up a college of your choice and describe what recreational activities they offer to students.
Come up with your own ideas of how to relax after a long week of studying.
Hello Pipeline Students!
I am going to introduce myself once more on the blog as part of the prompts you are receiving from Gina.
I am a part of the Navajo Nation in which my clans are Bitter Water, Tangle People, Red Running Into Water, and Bitter Water. My parents come from St. Michael’s and Ganado, Arizona, which is near Window Rock, Arizona.
I was born in Tucson, Arizona and grew up in Albuquerque, New Mexico in which I became really involved in the New Mexican culture. Some of my favorite traditions that we have in Albuquerque include eating green chile on everything (I mean EVERYTHING: pizza, burritos, eggs, spaghetti, even ice cream…and it’s real authentic green chile that is super duper hot), going to the Balloon Fiesta every year (when traffic is at its wooooorst), and the beautiful sunsets. New Mexico’s motto is “Land of Enchantment” but most of us call NM the “Land of Entrapment” because no matter how bored you are of the state, or how hard you try to get out of the state, you always come back and find yourself never wanting to leave.
I am a living testimony to that phrase because even when I went to Tucson, Arizona for school, I still find myself missing so much about New Mexico….especially our local foods (Dion’s, Sadie’s, Twisters, Blake’s Lotaburger, Keva Juice, Olo Yogurt, Frontier, and Golden Pride…if you are ever in the area, try one of these places and you will not regret it!
Another thing I love about New Mexico is the fact that the entertainment industry is slowly expanding to our backyard. Movies and TV shows that were filmed in NM include: Marvel’s The Avengers (I actually saw them film…I saw the lovely RDJ from a distance), Breaking Bad (I met Aaron Paul and Bryan Cranston at Garduno’s…another lovely local restaurant), and Better Call Saul (which they film near my mom’s work).
So besides the fact that I love New Mexico and its perks…I am obsessed with New York City. I’ve been in love with the city my whole life…so much that I know exactly which building I want to work in, where my apartment will be, and where my wedding ceremony and reception will be. I’ve traveled there twice for a week each and I fall more and more in love with it each time I visit. I’ve also been to Chicago, St. Paul, LA, San Diego, Austin TX, Gambier/Cleveland Ohio, Las Vegas, South Dakota, and El Paso TX. So I love traveling…a lot.
Things I like to do include filmmaking, taking pictures (even if they’re not so good), writing, socializing, stalking celebrities (no joke), spending time with my friends, and babysitting my two beautiful nieces.
As I said, I attend the University of Arizona as a Film Student. I plan on graduating in 2018 with a Bachelor’s in Fine Arts for Film/TV Production as well as a Bachelor’s in Business Marketing. With these two degrees, I plan on becoming a filmmaker so I can eventually open up my own studio production company. Once I am well-known in the entertainment industry, I plan on using my fame and studio to create an organization that deals with donating to charities and social organizations that celebrities and their fans can donate to. It’ll be a great organization to donate to especially when celebrities get paid soooo much and don’t often have the time to donate to charities themselves. So this organization will help encourage them to donate to charities, both large and small.
Other than that, I have been a part of the program for three years now. I attended as a student in 2012 and 2013 and this year is my first year as a mentor. I have always adored this program and have kept the relationships I have made (such as with Alejandro, Christa, Michael Derby, and others) so I am really blessed to be here once again but as a mentor.
I hope you all are very excited to attend the program because I was always excited to attend. This program prepared me for what to expect when applying to college so I am really grateful for the opportunity to come back.
Orientation in 3 Days!
Hello Pipeline 2015!
Today was day 2 of Mentor Training in which we drew this lovely picture of “The Land of Our Time”. As you can see, our land is beautiful and includes dinosaurs as well as cabins. We are all very excited to meet you students and start the wonderful two weeks that we have planned.
Remember to follow our Instagram for the program @NativePipeline so you can see what students and mentors are doing.
Today is Wednesday, and we only have five days left at Pipeline 2013. It seems like just yesterday, we were at the orientation meeting and barely knew each other. And now, we all know each other very well and talk for hours about the most random things. Tomorrow, we are going to Dr. Rega’s house, which is really beautiful, from what I remember last year. We are having an Iron Chef competition, which I am really excited for because I want to see how talented we all are in terms of our cooking abilities! Earlier, we did a native theatre workshop, which was interesting. I heard the Big Dipper story again, which I really like. I think Brittany, Luna, Isabel, Jazmine, and I will do a music video tonight, so prepare for music on full blast…! Haha 🙂