We are honored to serve the students who represent their families and their tribes when they walk through our doors.
STUDENT LIFE AT NWIC
At Northwest Indian College the student body is a diverse group. The average student is a 29-year-old female with at least one dependent. However, increasing numbers of traditional college age students are enrolling right out of high school. Over 75 percent of our students come from a federally-recognized Indian tribe and we represent over 90 different tribal nations. Northwest Indian College proudly serves over 1,100 students annually.
Message from the Dean of Student Life
Thank you for choosing Northwest Indian College!
At Northwest Indian College, we not only offer quality learning at an affordable cost but also the skills to achieve a balanced education through our philosophy of promoting Indigenous self-determination and knowledge. It is this philosophy that lends to our daily practices and dedication to student success.
Our student-oriented approach is evident in all we do: classroom learning, extra and co-curricular experiences, internships, research, and community outreach. Our investment in students is reflected in our graduates who are leaders in their fields and highly prized by employers. Student success is our highest priority.
As a student at Northwest Indian College, it is important that you understand you are a part of our family and that the Center for Student Success will make our best efforts to ensure you succeed, so that you may provide for yourself, your family, and your community. I encourage you to become involved in clubs, organizations, student government, and service-learning opportunities so that you may make the most of your college experience. It is your responsibility to take charge of your own education, and our Student Services staff will stand by to support you as you take full advantage of this extraordinary place.
Best wishes for a successful year!
Dean of Students
President’s & Dean’s List
Celebrate Our Students Who Earned High Academic Achievement!
Jo-Anna Rides The Grey Horse
Accommodations for Students
Dean of Students
At Northwest Indian College, providing equal opportunities for students who experience disabilities is a campus-wide responsibility and commitment. Academic and Student Support services are an integral part of equalizing the post-secondary environment for students who experience disabilities.
NWIC is committed to providing students with disabilities equal opportunities to benefit from all College services, programs, and activities. We comply with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Upon enrollment at NWIC, we ask that you provide the most
recent documentation form a licensed medical professional that clearly states your diagnoses (IEPS or 504 plans are also accepted). You can email to email@example.com, scan to
360-392-4255, or bring in person to the Center for Student Success (Building 17).
The Dean of Students will review your documentation and create an Accommodation Confirmation Letter. Once you review this letter, it will be submitted to your faculty quarterly upon your enrollment.
Faculty Notification letters will be emailed to each of your instructors. Ideally, you will meet with your instructor at the beginning of each quarter to discuss your accommodations and
communicate any concerns or questions you may have.
Did You Know?
Northwest Indian College Advisors offer holistic and student-centered guidance, empowering students with practical knowledge and skills to support cultural identity, academic success, self-determination, and personal growth.
What We Do:
Academic advising is provided to students by:
- Advisors in the Center for Student Success
- Faculty Advisors in the academic program in which the faculty member teaches, or by
- Site Managers at our instructional sites.
The academic advisor will work with students to enroll for courses and provide the necessary information to ensure adequate course selection for the student’s intended program of study. Advisors offer assistance to students in understanding degree requirements, planning schedules, and monitoring satisfactory academic progress. Students should schedule appointments with their advisor to verify that courses they have selected apply to their degree program prior to quarterly registration. While appointments are not mandatory, they are strongly recommended, especially during busy registration times before the start of each quarter. Drop-in advising is always available to students on a first come, first serve basis.
Meet your Academic Advisors
Sandra James is Makah and Lummi and a graduate of the BSNES program. For her Capstone project, Sandra focused on eDNA and GIS research of the invasive European Green Crab in the Lummi Nation Sea Pond. She grew up on the very northwestern point of Washington State on the Makah reservation. The ocean was her front yard and the mountains were her back yard. Raised and guided by a strong Whalers community and Mother Nature, she listens and lives life by the seasons. She is an avid hunter and provides traditional animal proteins to her family. Sandra makes time to attend community and cultural gatherings. In her spare time between the seasons, she enjoys hiking and camping with her family and friends.
James High is Cora Indian and Chiricahua Apache and a graduate of Western Washington University with a BA in History and Social Studies (with an emphasis on Education). James serves the NWIC community as the Second Year Academic Advisor and Career Advisor. Additionally, James supports the English faculty by teaching some courses, and the TGBM department with additional advising. James is also a member of the National Advising Organization: NACADA. In his spare time, James enjoys hiking and fishing in the company of his dog, Goshé, writing short stories and novels, studying history, playing teaching and learning games, and watching all kinds of horror movies.
Julia Orloff is a graduate of the Bachelor of Science in Native Environmental Science program at Northwest Indian College. She recently completed a Post-Graduate certificate in Academic Leadership through the Fielding Graduate University focused on women in STEM and initiatives in higher education, specifically at TCUs. She has a degree in Electro-Mechanical Technology. Currently, Julia serves as the Native Environmental Science Advisor and is a member of the National Advising Organization – NACADA. In her spare time, Julia enjoys showcasing her talent through traditional arts. Julia is an Aleut tribal member.
The Student Connections Program is designed to provide student support services for students at Northwest Indian College. The core of the program is the use of success strategies developed by the NWIC TRIO Student Support Program, Peer Mentoring and efficient case management strategies. These holistic non-cognitive strategies incorporate academic coaching, cultural knowledge and skill building, and development of self-efficacy. The objectives of the program are to maximize student strengths, identify challenges, and develop a fluid and flexible individual student success plan. Overall goal of the Student Connections Program is to promote persistence, retention, and graduation of NWIC students. The SCP uses the three-pronged approach focusing on Academics, Events, and Personal Life/Culture. Using these areas as a focus for supporting students, the SCP reaches out to students to support them with:
- Proper Academic Advisement and Planning
- We connect them with events and activities that are meaningful to their success
- We connect them with community opportunities that provide cultural community and a sense of place and identity.
This can include things like introducing them to our Indigenous Wellness events, connecting them with community members, aligning them with students and staff from the same communities and advising the student in a holistic manner.
What We Do:
Academic Coaching is provided to students by:
- The Student Connections Program Director in the Center for Student Success
- The Coach Advocate in the academic program in which the faculty member teaches, or by
- Student Peer Mentors
Meet your Student Connections Staff
Hello, my name is Denise Neal. I am an enrolled tribal member of the Suquamish Tribe, which is a sovereign nation on the Port Madison Indian reservation. Many will recognize my tribe through its affiliation to the city Seattle, WA; which is named after the ancestral leader of my tribe “Chief Seattle.”
I am an alumnus of Northwest Indian College, I graduated in 2019 from the Tribal Governance Business Management program and then I decided to continue my higher education journey at Arizona State University as an Indigenous Education, MA student.
I have returned to NWIC as a Coach Advocate for students. I am passionate about supporting our community’s cultural survival and identity efforts. Culture has been the fuel to my educational pursuits and now my long-term career goals too.
Student Internship Opportunities
Student Internship Documents
If you are a student that has worked at NWIC within the last three years and has all hiring documents on file, the internship supervisor only needs to submit a PAF.
If you are a student that has not worked within the last three years, the student will need to submit all the following new hire documents and the internship supervisor needs to submit a PAF.
Some s also require a NWIC application, cover letter and resume. This is optional.
Internship Supervisor Documents
If your intern has worked at NWIC within the last three years and has all hiring documents on file, you only needs to submit a PAF to HR.
If your student intern has not worked within the last three years, the student will need to submit all the following new hire documents and you need to submit a PAF to HR.
Wellness and Mental Health Resources
Wellness is a core belief at NWIC. As part of our guiding values, NWIC believes:
- Sәla-exʷ: Our strength comes from the old people. From them we receive our teachings and knowledge and the advice we need for our daily lives.
- Schtәngәxʷәn: We are responsible to protect our territory. This means we take care of our land and water and everything that is on it and in it.
- Xwlәmi-chosәn: Our culture is our language. We should strengthen and maintain our language.
- Leng-e-sot: We take care of ourselves, watch out for ourselves and love and take care of one another.
- Xaalh: Life balance/sacred
Mental Health Resources
Student Access through Health Promotion Northwest in Whatcom County
Free – Confidential – Helpful
Office Hours: 8:30 – 5:00 p.m.
Eve. appts. available
Marilene Silva ( Kaikoxipa Surana), MA in Psychology, licensed as a Marriage and Family Therapist, as well as a Substance Use Disorder Professional is a quadrilingual justice-oriented, liberation-focused psychotherapist from the Macuxi Amazonian Tribe of Northern Brazil. She aims to transform the oppressive ways of the mental health industry and provide mental health services that are relevant to BIPOC communities in their pursuit of community and collective healing. Areas of expertise relate to working with individuals, couples, and families who have suffered from trauma, chemical addictions, relational issues (including narcissistic abuse), intergenerational trauma, the impact of contemporary racism, internalized oppression, attachment issues,depression, anxiety, PTSD, and others . Marilene Silva is an ally of LGBTQIA2S+, Indigenous, Black, and other oppressed people of color around the world. Marilene is certified as a Gottman Educator, Certified as Core Therapist for Sexual Trauma, trained in EMDR, Emotionally Focused Therapy and others.
Appointments are available through video and or phone calls only due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Heather Jefferson is a Lummi Tribal member and alumni of Northwest Indian College. Heather is a life-long learner and advocate for all things wellness for NWIC faculty and staff.
Contact Heather at firstname.lastname@example.org
Patrick received his Bachelors and Master of Music degrees from Western Washington University. His graduate thesis advocates for the need to implement culturally responsive and diverse music curriculum at the secondary level. His approach to Wellness is holistic and nurtures the creative spirit of the individual.In addition to working one-on-one with students, Patrick organizes the NWIC Lummi Campus Community Food Pantry and cooking demonstrations, advises the Native Pride Music Club and works with students on a variety of music-related projects. In his extracurricular life, Patrick is a gigging musician and volunteers at the Bellingham Food Bank. He is a proud father and loves to cook for his family. Patrick is of Hungarian and Irish ancestry.
Contact Patrick at email@example.com
First Year Experience
Newileng, welcome students, to First Year Experience, (FYE)
at Northwest Indian College (NWIC).
First Year Experience provides students under forty-five college credits with opportunities to participate in a uniquely designed Indigenous student success initiative that aligns with institutional mission fulfillment. FYE also helps integrate these students into the academic rigor and cultural community of NWIC.
FYE courses and activities help students to:
- Transition into college.
- Enhance knowledge and academic skills for college success.
- Develop an educational degree plan.
- Connect with local community holistic and wellness support services.
- Participate in co-curricular activities.
- Establish personalized student support.
- Improve student life skills and personal academic organization.
The First Year Experience Student Objectives:
- Exhibit Tribal place-based awareness.
- Commitment to Tribal community and civic responsibility.
- Demonstrate college level skills in mathematics, oral communications, reading, and writing.
Math and Writing Center
The Math and Writing Center is a safe haven that provides academic support for all students. Peer and professional tutors provide individual and small group tutoring. Support is provided in subjects such as mathematics; including algebra, calculus and statistics, English; such as writing, grammar, editing, and science; with emphasis in chemistry and biological studies. Access to computers and printing services is also available.
Although the Math and Writing Center is located at the Lummi campus, online tutoring is also available for all students, regardless of location. Online tutoring can be accessed by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. For questions or special tutoring arrangements contact the Math and Writing Center, building 3, at the NWIC Lummi Campus. The Math and Writing Center is typically open from 9-5pm Monday-Thursday and 10-4pm Friday with extended hours during finals week. For more information, please call 360-392-4235 or email email@example.com.
REMOTE TUTORING VIA ZOOM
Monday – 10AM-6PM
Tuesday – 10AM-6PM
Wednesday – 10AM-6PM
Thursday – 10AM-6PM
Friday – 10AM-6PM
Saturday – 11AM-5PM
Sunday – 11AM-5PM
The mission of the library is to support the Northwest Indian College and the Lummi Community with research, informational, and recreational resources that enhance life-long
The collections include more than 30,000 titles in print, audio, and video formats and focus on curricular support and Native American topics while including general interest and children’s materials. Subscriptions provide access to a number of electronic databases. The library also holds the personal collection of Native scholar Vine Deloria, Jr.
The catalog is available through our NWIC Library page. Purchasing or borrowing from other libraries may be an option.
Facilities include a computer lab with internet access and office software, wireless access, photocopying and scanning, study space, and video playback.
Library instruction is available individually and to classes. Distance learning students and faculty are encouraged to use library resources, and to contact the library for details.
At Northwest Indian College, selecting and ordering textbooks is done entirely online at the NWIC Online Bookstore. Created in partnership with Ambassador, the Online Bookstore simplifies the textbook ordering process for students and faculty while providing them with a variety of physical and digital textbook formats.
Textbooks are no longer available in the on-campus bookstore, but the NWIC Eagles Market is still open with a variety of snacks, gifts, clothing and additional products.
NWIC has partnered with Ambassador, an outside vendor, that opens for ordering textbooks, and other course materials, 4 weeks prior to the start of each Quarter and remains open for approximately six weeks into the quarter.
Enrollment & Transcripts
Northwest Indian College’s primary focus is on recruiting Native American and First Nations (Canadian) students but follows an “open door” admissions policy.
Anyone who is 18 years of age or older and who has graduated from high school or completed a GED may enroll. Students who are between the ages of 16 and 18, who have completed a high school diploma or GED, must obtain permission from their school district before enrolling for college or high school level courses. Students 16 years of age and older are eligible to enroll in Continuing Education (CEU) courses. Students who are not prepared to begin college level courses are provided with a wide variety of developmental course work designed to enable them to prepare for more advanced study and to pursue programs suited to their interests and aptitude.
*As of July 1, 2015, students are REQUIRED to submit a copy of a high school diploma or GED before their application is considered accepted.
Getting Your Transcripts
Ordering a transcript online through the National Student Clearinghouse is a more convenient option that ensures all information is entered correctly to prevent delays and includes status notifications. There is a $4.00 fee and a convenience fee of $2.25 per transaction (the $4.00 fee is waived one time for currently enrolled full-time students).
Ordering a transcript through the Enrollment Services Office. There is a $4.00 fee and a convenience fee of $2.25 per transaction (the $4.00 fee is waived one time for currently enrolled full-time students). Completed forms should be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have any questions please contact the Enrollment Office at 360-392-4245 or
Enrollment & Transcript Forms
*Please note classes under the location ‘Lummi’ are in-person. Find virtual class options under Independent & Online and Video Conference. Please consult with your advisor or site manager for questions and assistance.
Definitions of Class Types
Student Housing Options
NWIC currently has two housing options. The first is the Residence Life Center (RLC) and the second is the NWIC Family Housing at the Kwina Village Family Housing, both located at the Lummi campus.
The mission of the NWIC Housing Program is to build a sustainable community through promotion of healthy living, leadership development, and embracing traditional ways of its residents and the community. Programming will enhance and strengthen individual access to culturally relevant education and personal growth.
NWIC Residence Life Priority Deadlines
NWIC Quarters Deadline Date
Summer Quarter June 1
Fall Quarter September 1
Winter Quarter December 1
Spring Quarter March 1
NWIC Residence Life Priority Deadlines
|NWIC Quarters||Deadline Date|
|Summer Quarter||June 1|
|Fall Quarter||September 1|
|Winter Quarter||December 1|
|Spring Quarter||March 1|
Residence Life Center (Dormitory)
The RLC houses 64 students and 3 Resident Assistants. There are double and triple occupancy rooms available. All rooms have a private suite style bathroom, sink, desk, chairs, bunk beds, dressers and space for either a microwave or small fridge.
The RLC also has a fully furnished lounge which includes: Television, Direct TV satellite, couches, chairs, dining set, kitchen and two computer stations. There is an on-site laundry facility and a dining hall where students have meals prepared for them. The quarterly meal plan is required for all residents.
Kwina Village Apartments
The NWIC Family Housing at the Kwina Estates is located within walking distance from main campus. There are eight 1-bedroom, nine 2-bedroom, and two 3-bedroom apartments available. These units are not furnished. Residents of these units can purchase a quarterly meal plan but it is not required. This option requires an application obtained at the Residence Life Center office or download the PDF Form on this page.
Housing applications will be accepted continuously. All applications must be complete and include the $50.00 application fee. Complete applications will be placed on a waiting list in the order they are received. For more information please contact email@example.com.
Kwina Village Apartment Rent Rates
Associated Students of Northwest Indian College
The primary function of the Student Executive board is for student involvement in the college decision-making process and communication between college administration and students.
All full and part-time students on the main and extended campuses are automatically members of the Associated Students and are entitled to privileges and responsibilities of such membership. The ASNWIC annually elects a Student Executive Board (SEB) to represent the interests of students at all NWIC campuses. The Executive Board consists of student officers as President, Vice-President of finance, Vice-President of Clubs and Organizations, Vice-President of Activities, and Vice-President of Extended Campuses. In addition, the organization provides programs which meet the needs of students in the areas of education, culture, social activity and student welfare.
NWIC students are encouraged to be aware of the Constitution and Bylaws that help the Student Executive Board make decisions. The SEB uses the following documents to guide all the policy and procedures.
Campus Clubs and Organizations
Campus clubs and organizations exist for a variety of reasons.
Clubs allow students to develop a community of people with similar interests. Clubs often provide a door into the non-academic world through professional contacts with business and Tribal leaders. Clubs and organizations provide students a way for involvement in the larger community. Clubs and organizations add value to a student’s collegiate experience. Students may create a Campus Club with a group of students coming together with a collective mission that aligns with the college’s mission.
Campus Clubs and Organizations include, but are not limited to:
Want to Start an NWIC Club?
NWIC students are encouraged to be involved in an existing club or organize a group of students to form a new club.
NWIC Extended Campus Locations
Northwest Indian College‘s main campus is located at the Lummi Nation. The College also has six full service extended campus sites located at Muckleshoot, Nez Perce, Nisqually, Port Gamble S’Klallam, Swinomish, and Tulalip. Please use the location links to view details for each extended campus site.
Northwest Indian College administers a broad range of financial aid, scholarships, and work-study programs for students who can demonstrate financial need.
NWIC students are encouraged to engage and integrate into the life of the institution. Students are offered opportunities to participate in enrichment activities through Student Affairs, student government, and residence life.