Hannah Bissett

News Intern

Hannah Bissett is a Dena'ina woman who is currently enrolled at University of Alaska Anchorage. Hannah is persuing a General Arts Associate degree and is a member of the Concert Board, and Alpha Sigma Alpha. 

In Anchorage, a movement called the place-making movement is making a big splash by bringing representation for the Dena’ina with signs, statues and more.

The place-making movement will focus on multiple sites in Anchorage that hold significance for the Dena’ina. 

Aaron Leggett is the president and chair of the Native Village of Eklutna -- a federally recognized Tribe within the municipality Anchorage. 

Leggett tells of when he began working at the Alaska Native Heritage Center at age 19.

According to incarceration data from the 2010 Census, Native American people accounted for more than one-third of adults incarcerated in Alaska. 

Legal experts say that unless the justice system includes more Indigenous people as lawyers and judges -- inequities in incarceration will continue.

Natasha Singh is general counsel for the Tanana Chiefs Conference, a Tribal consortium of 42 Interior Alaska Native villages. 

The Alaska Native Science and Engineering Program, or ANSEP, was created in 1995 as a scholarship program for Alaska Native students.

Now,  ANSEP is available for all Alaskan residents, supporting more than 2,000 students. ANSEP has opportunities for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, otherwise known as STEM, learning -- beginning at kindergarten all the way to Ph.D level of education.

One of their newest opportunities is called Summer Bridge

Annauk  Olin and her mother, Maggie Pollock, translated information about the COVID-19 vaccine and the Census into Iñupiaq. 

The mother-and-daughter duo worked on a panel working to translate information into Iñupiaq for the Alaska Public Interest Research Group, or AKPIRG.

Olin says they had to add some things along the way. 

“When we worked on Census material, there were words that we had to create, because it didn't necessarily apply to our everyday life and culture."  



As our climate changes around us, the unusual is becoming more frequent.

Whether it be shorter snow seasons, intense wildfires, or most recently-- storms and lightning across the Chukchi and Beaufort seas.

Alaska climate specialist Rick Thoman,(TOE-min) says thunderstorms need a few different ingredients. 

"One, they need a moisture, and they need a fairly steep decrease in temperature of loft."

Gwich’in artist Colleen Firmin Thomas is from Fort Yukon and is known for her abstract paintings. 

In her piece, “Boundaries as Battlelines,” Thomas uses a brush to make vertical stacks of gray and brown. In the gray, porcupine quills and moose fur are placed in a way to demark and mark a boundary between the layers of earthen-colored streaks.

“For me painting is the way to process the world,” she said. “And a way to like I tell people, It's kind of like a therapy.”

The National Park Service awarded a $56,254 grant to the Alutiiq Museum for a project called Return Them or Angilluki (ah-KNEE-loo-gee)

Museum collections curator Amanda Lancaster says the money will go toward the museum’s efforts in locating and researching remains, for possible repatriation. 

The remains of an Alaska Native student buried more than 100 years ago at the Carlisle Indian Industrial School in Pennsylvania will return to Alaska. 

Beginning June 19, the U.S Army will begin the process to return the remains of 10 Native students buried at the Carlisle school. 

According to a U.S. Army news release, nine students are from the Rosebud Sioux Tribe and one student -- Sophia Tetoff is identified as an Alaskan Aleut.