Kya-Rae Arthur

Kya-Rae Arthur takes the Miss Salish Kootenai College crown for the second year in a row.

Char-Koosta News


PABLO — Another “fantastic powwow” is in the books for Salish Kootenai College. 

The annual SKC Graduation Powwow drew in a hearty round of 15 drums, 120 registered dancer, including nearly 60 nonregistered dancers including tiny tots. 

“I hope our students and community gain an appreciation for the cultural foundation that is at the center of SKC,” said SKC President Sandra Boham.

Tribal Colleges have created the space for tribal people to fully embrace higher education and remain grounded in their traditions and identities as Native people Boham explained. She hopes through the annual graduation powwow the community can see the quality higher education programs SKC offers. “We have students who are making a difference in their lives and in their communities,” said Boham.

In her three years as SKC President, Boham said she loves seeing all the graduates during the graduate honor dance. “I feel emotional. The smiles on the faces of the students, the pride that you can see in the faculty as they dance with their graduates,” Boham says the presence of the community filled with joy is what makes her heart feel full each Spring at the annual celebration. 

“I love seeing the community be so proud of the student’s accomplishment,” she said. “Opportunities to have community recognition are important milestones in our student’s journey.”

Boham, who began The Miss SKC Pageant, said she especially enjoys seeing and hearing from the selection of young woman who will represent SKC and community for the year. 

This year student Kya-Rae Arthur (Dine, Chippewa Cree, Oglala, Lakota, and Pend d’Oreille) took the crown for the second year in a row. ArriAnna Henry-Matt (CSKT tribal member) was 1st runner-up and Laurencia Starblanket (CSKT tribal member) was 2nd runner-up.

Arthur, Tribal Historic Program major and Fine Arts minor, stated in her pageant completion essay, “I look forward to empowering my community through art, culture, and history.” She said she enjoys teaching traditional arts in cultural classes through quillwork, beadwork, sewing, and parfleche painting. 

“These young women are role models and take this leadership challenge well. It is not easy to be a role model, but these young women are willing to step forward,” said Boham. 

Boham said it important as a Tribal College and tribal community to share accomplishments and to give the community an opportunity to express their appreciation and congratulate each other on achieving educational goals. 

“We have all had people along the way who have supported us as we have worked toward our accomplishments. This is a time to thank those who have helped and guided us by letting them honor them in this way,” said Boham.

SKC Powwow & Graduate Honoring: 2019 Powwow winners:

Junior Girls Fancy

1st – Makli Brown Eagle

2nd – Braylin Black

3rd – Taryn Haynes Matt

Junior Girls Jingle

1st – Jolee Baker

2nd – Jolena Eagle Speaker

3rd – Mara Ramirez

Junior Girls Traditional

1st – Julianna Brown

2nd – Ellannah Flatlip

3rd – Bresies Ross

Junior Boys Fancy

1st – Josh skunkcap

2nd – Edgar Pete

3rd – Ethan Lamb

Junior Boys Grass

1st – Justus Cree Jr.

2nd – Talon Addison

3rd – Sisnce Brown Eagle

Junior Boys Traditional

1st – Thomas Addison

2nd – Guy Fox

3rd – Avary McDonald

Teen Girls Fancy

1st- Michele Wolfchild
2nd- Dulci Skunkcap
3rd- Peyton Whitehawk

Teen Girls Jingle

1st – Cecelia Coon

2nd – Whisper Little Owl

3rd – Taleigher Perry

Teen Girls Traditional

1st – Taylor Morning Owl Decker

2nd – Titanya McDonald

3rd – Emaurice Flatlip

Teen Boys Fancy

1st – Cactus Runs Above

Teen Boys Grass

1st – Callan Fox

2nd – Jamal Comes At Night

3rd – Sabine Brown Eagle

Teen Boys Traditional 

1st – Caleb Pierre

2nd – Jaiden Comes At Night

3rd- Colsyn Eagle Speaker

Women’s Fancy

1st – Aislyn Baker

2nd – Sierra Pete

3rd – Siliye Pete

Women’s Jingle

1st – Laurencia Starblanket

2nd – Zunika Jules

3rd – Vanessa Pete

Women’s Traditional

1st – Olivia Nichols

2nd – Davonica Brown Eagle

3rd – Joncee Scabbyrobe

Men’s Fancy

1st – Jonathon Nomee

2nd – Chaz Baker

3rd – Walter Runs Above

Men’s Grass

1st – Devin Brown Eagle

2nd – Cedric Earthboy

3rd – Quinn Baker

Men’s Traditional

1st - Ike Carpentier

2nd – AJ McDonald

3rd – Justus Cree Sr.

Men’s Prairie chicken

1st – Cortez Osborne

2nd – Rodney FirstStrike

3rd – Ronnie Belgard

Collegiate Special


3rd – ArriAnna Matt

2nd – Shaelynn Walks Over Ice

1st – Sierra Pete


3rd – Keenan Barlow

2nd – Quinn Baker

1st- Terrance Cleveland

MC- Mike Sanchez

Arena Director – Kermit Davis

Head Man Dancer – Shay Earthboy

Head Woman Dancer – Kya-Rae Arthur

This article has be updated to correct winners in the Teen Girls Fancy category.

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