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Indiana University South Bend and Pokagon Band Renew and Expand Their Institutional Award Program

Dec 8, 2022

IUS Pokagon The Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians and Indiana University South Bend are pleased to announce they have renewed and expanded their Institutional Award Program, which benefits eligible Pokagon Band citizens and individuals employed by various Pokagon Band entities. A ceremonial signing event was completed today at the IU South Bend campus featuring Pokagon Band Chairwoman, Rebecca Richards and IU South Bend Chancellor, Susan Elrod. Members of IU South Bends faculty and staff were in attendance along with members of the Pokagon Band Tribal Council, Pokagon Band tribal government, and Pokagon students currently attending IU South Bend.

Under the terms of the agreement, IU South Bend shall provide eligible Pokagon citizens and employees with Institutional Awards that reduce or eliminate the difference between in-state and out-of-state tuition rates. Although the Pokagon Band is federally recognized in the state of Indiana and owns and operates several businesses within the state, many of the tribes citizens and employees reside in Michigan and other states.

To be eligible for the Institutional Award, Pokagon citizens and employees must qualify for admission into IU South Bend, consistent with the universitys usual admission procedures. Admitted Pokagon citizens and employees may participate in any IU South Bend undergraduate or graduate program, degree or non-degree, offered in any modality including online, in person, hybrid, etc. IU South Bends online courses were just added to the program.

Commenting on the Institutional Award Program, Rebecca Richards, Chairwoman of the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians said, The Pokagon tribal government strives to make investments that will have a positive impact for our tribe, seven generations into the future. Access to higher education opportunities and life-long learning are critical to the long-term success of our Pokagon citizens and the individuals that are employed by our various business entities. Despite having hundreds of Pokagon citizens and employees that reside in the state of Indiana, we have thousands more that reside in Michigan and other states. We are extremely pleased to renew and expand our partnership with IU South Bend, to ensure that all of our citizens and employees have access to the same high quality educational opportunities, from one of the top universities in the region.

IU South Bend Chancellor Susan Elrod said, We are thrilled to partner with the Pokagon Band to create more opportunities for Pokagon citizens to access higher education. A college degree helps students transform their lives and the lives of those around them. IU South Bend students graduate and become difference-makers_in their community, which we know is important to the tribe._ We welcome Pokagon citizens and employees as students who enrich our campus community with their talents and traditions and look forward to supporting them as they pursue their degrees and their passions.

About The Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians of Michigan and Indiana

The Pokagon Band of Potawatomis sovereignty was reaffirmed under legislation signed into law by President Clinton in September of 1994. The Pokagon Band is dedicated to providing community development initiatives such as housing, education, family services, medical care and cultural preservation for its more than 6,000 citizens. The Pokagon Bands ten-county service area includes four counties in Southwestern Michigan and six in Northern Indiana. Its main administrative offices are in Dowagiac, Mich., with a satellite office in South Bend, Ind. In 2007, it opened Four Winds Casino Resort in New Buffalo, Mich., followed by Four Winds Hartford in 2011, Four Winds Dowagiac in 2013 and Four Winds South Bend in January 2018. The Pokagon Band operates a variety of businesses via Mno-Bmadsen, its non-gaming investment enterprise. More information is available at, and

About IU South Bend

Indiana University South Bend is this areas only comprehensive public university, dedicated to serving the needs of North Central Indiana and beyond. As a regional campus of Indiana University, IU South Bend provides a diverse population the opportunity to affordably earn a prestigious IU degree through its quality graduate and undergraduate programs. With its caring faculty and staff, IU South Bend is committed to an inclusive, student-centered approach that focuses on preparing its students for both the workforce and postgraduate education through rigorous coursework, research, and creative activity. IU South Bend is a catalyst for social mobility that contributes to the vitality of its region by educating informed individuals, thoughtful stewards, innovative professionals, and responsible leaders. Learn more at

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