CWU News

CWU Recognized by National Publication for Efforts to Include Indigenous Students

CWU has been included among the nation’s top 200 colleges for indigenous students in a recent edition of Winds of Change magazine.

The magazine, published by the American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES), compiled data from a variety of sources, including the U.S. Department of Education, to compile its 2019-20 list. 

Indigenous students make up roughly 1.4 percent of all full-time undergrads enrolled at CWU. Of those students, about 40 percent graduate within six years. CWU was recognized for its indigenous student initiatives, including graduation fellowships, retention programs, and its chapter of the Native American Counsel. 

“One of our goals at Central is to provide people from all racial and ethnic backgrounds with the same resources and opportunities for success,” said Kandee Cleary, vice president of inclusivity and diversity at CWU. “We are proud to be recognized nationally for our efforts at growing our indigenous student population, and we continue to make additional progress every year.”

The annual Winds of Change list looked at institutions in all 50 states, taking into consideration the support systems available to students from admission through graduation. Among the criteria the selection committee looked at were the local native community and the number of degrees available. The list included public, private, and tribal-specific colleges and universities. The schools on the list were not ranked.

“We try to focus on schools with more than 30 indigenous graduates, or 2 percent or more, and those that award 20-plus baccalaureate degrees to native students,” the magazine said. “We also take note of a school’s indigenous student percentages in comparison with that state’s indigenous population, expressed as a percentage.”  

The Winds of Change top 200 list can be viewed online

Media contact: David Leder, Department of Public Affairs, 509-963-1518,