Tue May 12th, 2020
The Morris K. Udall & Stewart L. Udall Foundation (Udall Foundation) and the Native Nations Institute for Leadership, Management, and Policy at the University of Arizona (NNI) are pleased to announce the selection of the 2020 Native American Congressional Interns.
The program’s newest class of Udall Interns comprises 12 students representing 12 tribes and nine universities from around the country. The Udall Interns were selected by an independent review committee on the basis of academic achievement, leadership, and demonstrated commitment to careers in tribal public policy.
Garrett W. Briggs, a Northern Arizona University alumnus and member of the Southern Ute Indian Tribe is among those recognized for a Native American Congressional Internship. Briggs is a descendent of the Mouache and Capote Bands of Utes. He is the first member of the Southern Ute Indian Tribe to be selected as a Udall intern.
Briggs obtained his Master of Arts in archaeological research from Northern Arizona University in 2017 and spent the last three years working for the Southern Ute Indian Tribe as a Tribal Liaison. Focused on cultural preservation, he worked extensively with government and tribal agencies in Colorado, Utah, and New Mexico to document and preserve Ute ancestral sites and to repatriate and protect ancestors. In the future, Briggs plans to obtain his Juris Doctorate and work for the Tribe as a lawyer specializing in the protection of Ute heritage.
Udall Interns are placed in Senate, House, and Federal agency offices in Washington, D.C., for an intensive nine-week summer program. Additional professional development and enrichment activities are hosted throughout the internship program and provide opportunities for the Udall Interns to meet and network with key decision makers.
However, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Udall Foundation and NNI have made the difficult decision to cancel the 2020 Udall Internship program. As a result, all of the 2020 Udall Interns have been offered spots in the 2021 program. In the interim, staff from the Udall Foundation and NNI are working together to provide the 2020 Udall Interns with online professional development and networking opportunities to keep the class connected and supported.
From 1996 through 2019, 278 Native American and Alaska Native students from 124 Tribes have participated in the Native American Congressional Internship program.
The Udall Foundation’s Native American Congressional Internship Program, funded and co-managed by NNI, provides Native American and Alaska Native undergraduate, graduate, and law students with the opportunity to gain practical experience with the Federal legislative process in order to understand firsthand the government-to-government relationship between Tribes and the Federal Government.
The Udall Foundation was established by Congress in 1992 as an independent executive branch agency to honor Morris K. Udall’s lasting impact on this Nation’s environment, public lands, and natural resources, and his support of the rights and self-governance of Native Americans and Alaska Natives. In 2009, Congress enacted legislation to honor Stewart L. Udall and add his name to the Udall Foundation. For more information, visit udall.gov.
NNI was founded in 2001 by the Udall Foundation and the University of Arizona as a self–determination, governance, and development resource for Native Nations. For more information, visit nni.arizona.edu.
For additional information about the Native Nations Institute and the Udall Internship program, please contact Mona Nozhackum at firstname.lastname@example.org