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Kamryn Yanchick

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Kamryn Yanchick


Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Impact Fellow
2021-2022

Education

BA, Native American Studies, in progress
BA, Political Science, in progress

Personal Statement

I am a proud citizen of the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma and a descendant of the Muscogee Nation. I’m working towards earning dual degrees in political science and Native American studies, with an emphasis in tribal governance and policy. On campus I currently serve as the President of Gamma Delta Pi, the state Director of Diversity and Inclusion and the OU Director of Philanthropy for the Oklahoma Intercollegiate Legislature, and a member of the Honors College Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Advisory Board.

Growing up in Oklahoma has guided my interests in public service involving tribal law and policy, which I view as tools with the potential to create positive change. I hope to attend law school after completing my undergraduate degree, and find a meaningful career advocating for the rights of Native peoples and the sovereignty of tribal nations.

Areas of Interest and Expertise

Tribal Law and Policy, American Indian Politics, Activism and Organizing, Native American Voting Rights and Civic Engagement, Indigenous Research Methods

Selected Research and Creative Activity

“The 26th Turns 50 (And Still Needs ID To Vote)!” SVNCast from the Student Voting Network.

Indigenous Archives across Publics: Collaborative Digital Curation through the Mukurtu Platform with Dr. Amanda Minks.

“Sovereignty and Uranium Mining in the Navajo Nation” The Honors Undergraduate Research Journal, 2021.

“Finding Fight in Dark Places: Oil, Oppression and Ogoni Women's Resistance” The Honors Undergraduate Research Journal, 2021.

"Student Activism and MMIW Awareness." *Received Distinguished Presenter Award at 2020 Undergraduate Research Day from the OU Honors College and the 2020 June and Oliver Benson Undergraduate Paper Award from the OU Political Science Department.

Previous Administrative Work

Native American Studies Dept. Student Office Assistant
Seminole Nation of Oklahoma Election Board Contract Employee
Rock the Native Vote Voter Registrar

Current Projects

I am a 2021-22 National Student Advisory Board member for Campus Vote Project. My focus is on Native American programming, policy, and research. Throughout the upcoming year I will be creating workshops, panels, and informational policy briefs on issues impacting Native voters, with an emphasis on Native college student voters. I will also lead a research project on the unique barriers Native college students face when engaging with the voting process.

After completing an internship with the American Civil Liberties Union National Political Advocacy Department, I have developed a campaign which hopes to implement legislation in key states across the country which will protect Native American students’ right to wear tribal regalia and objects of cultural significance at graduation ceremonies. I will continue working on this campaign until the end of the 2022 legislative session for the target states.