The recently-established CPN Department of Education is fully staffed with a director, two college advisors and an internship coordinator. We have had the pleasure of speaking to over 100 tribal members in the few past few months, but for those who we have not yet met, we would love to share a little bit about ourselves.
Tesia Zientek is a Citizen Potawatomi Nation tribal member. With financial help from a prestigious Gates Millennium Scholarship, she graduated magna cum laude from the University of Notre Dame in 2009 with her Bachelor of Arts in English. After graduation, Tesia spent two years teaching and running an after school program in Puerto Rico before deciding to pursue her passion for education through graduate study. In 2013, she graduated with her Master of Arts in Education Policy from Stanford University. To celebrate her educational and employment-related achievements, Tesia was recognized in 2013 for the Howard Yackus Memorial Award. In October 2015, she became the Citizen Potawatomi Nation’s first director of its new department of education. Since 2012, Tesia has also served as Potawatomi Leadership Program advisor, helping to restructure and implement curriculum for the Harvard Honoring Nations Award-winning internship program.
Channing Seikel is a 2010 graduate of Oklahoma Baptist University, where she studied sociology and family science. After graduation, she accepted a job at her alma mater as a senior admission counselor. While at OBU, Channing provided individualized advisement to prospective students, developed an in-depth training manual for new admission counselors, planned and executed an annual, highly-attended college fair for central Oklahoma and established recruiting and admission best practices. In 2016, she joined the Citizen Potawatomi Nation Department of Education team as a senior college advisor. In this capacity, she establishes, maintains, and nurtures effective relationships with Native American students, families, guidance counselors, and Indian education coordinators. In addition, she guides students and families through scholarship opportunities and applications, standardized testing preparation and college search options. A first generation college student, Channing has found her passion in being an advocate for those pursuing higher education.
Joshua Bullock is a 2012 graduate of OBU where he studied history and minored in German. He is also a 2015 graduate with an MBA from St. Gregory’s University. Joshua is currently pursuing his Ed.D in Educational Leadership at the University of New England. He has been in education since 2013 working for both OBU and SGU, the latter at which Joshua advised non-traditional students in the degree fields of education, business, psychology and business at the graduate level. In 2016, Joshua joined the Citizen Potawatomi Nation Department of Education as a college advisor. He actively serves any student he can to help them find the right university, program and scholarship opportunities. As a first generation college student, Joshua developed a love for those who need a helping hand as they begin their college search.
Mindee Duffell has extensive experience in the workforce development field. From May 2009 through April 2012, she worked with the State of Oklahoma’s Employment Security Commission for Workforce Oklahoma, where she organized job fairs, discovered local workforce needs and determined applicant work history, training and education for job placement. In 2012, Mindee joined the Citizen Potawatomi Nation as a trainer in human resources. While working in this capacity, Mindee created, developed and wrote training programs specific to various departmental needs, conducted weekly new hire orientation, and worked with employees to build advanced skills. Mindee graduated magna cum laude from St. Gregory’s University in May 2015 with an Associate’s Degree in Business and is currently completing her bachelor’s degree. The aforementioned experience prepared Mindee to join the Citizen Potawatomi Nation’s first education department in March 2016, where she serves as the internship coordinator. Mindee works with prospective interns and departmental directors to determine best matches, develos internship projects and offer general support to ensure that interns receive a personalized, professionally beneficial experience.
If you would like to learn more about the educational opportunities available through the CPN Department of Education, please visit potawatomi.org/services/education or email firstname.lastname@example.org.