Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has awarded a total of $283,164 for the New Beginning for Wabanaki Students, to increase Wabanaki student participation and success at the University of Maine and the University of Maine at Machias.
“The New Beginning for Wabanki Students at the University of Maine program will serve as a critical resource for Native American college students, promoting developmental and educational growth,” said Senators Collins and King in a joint statement. “This program will link Wabanaki students with the resources they need to achieve their academic and career goals.”
This award will be coordinated by the Wabanaki Youth in Science Program, a peer mentorship program that connects Native students to both community and university support systems. The program is aimed at bringing together indigenous cultural values and western education through on-campus activities including events, roundtables, and presentations.
Senators Collins and King have long supported Maine’s tribal communities, including by helping to secure nearly $4 million in federal funding for tribal health in Maine during the COVID-19 pandemic, including awards of $2.7 million in July to expand public health and wellness services and more than $1 million in August to build and expand public health infrastructure. Senators Collins and King also helped secure $1 million in August to combat tribal substance and opioid use disorders.