Blackfeet Community College has received a $2,132,028 NARCH grant from the National Institutes of Health. The Project Title is “Blackfeet Community College Center for Culture as Medicine.” This grant was endowed by the Native American Research Centers for Health (NARCH) for the purpose of Research and Career enrichment opportunities to meet the specific health needs identified and prioritized by American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) Tribes and Tribally based organizations. This Native American Research Center for Health (NARCH) grant seeks to build the capacity of health equity research at Blackfeet Community College (BCC) Center for Culture as Medicine (CCM) and to improve the mental and physical health of the Blackfeet nation. The proposed project leverages the previous NARCH efforts over the last several years to train BCC faculty in biomedical research and to build the college’s research infrastructure, including a state-of-the art research laboratory at BCC that has enabled our students and faculty to perform a broad range of research projects. Previous NARCH funded research at Blackfeet Community College has examined the interventions of traditional Blackfeet ways and its impact on the improvement of community mental health. The objective for the upcoming NARCH grant is to continue to build on research capacity at BCC, as well as examine potential interventions that will respond to the health concerns among the Blackfeet Nation. Due to the support of this grant, Blackfeet Community College will have the funding to develop a faculty mini-grant research program that will help generate preliminary data for future grant proposals, as well as build a research culture at the college. The grant will also provide funding to support research faculty and undergraduate research internships, as well as purchase laboratory supplies. Furthermore, Blackfeet Community College will have the support to host its first annual Blackfoot Research Conference by the Summer of 2022, to feature and highlight methodologies and research within the Blackfoot Confederacy. Thank you to the National Institutes of Health and IDeA Network of Biomedical Research Excellence (INBRE) for the support of this grant. Another special thanks to Allen Harmsen, Emily Salois, Ann Bertagnolli, and Neha John-Henderson for the support in this grant proposal. Research reported in this publication was supported by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number S06GM141660. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.
BFCC Research Council members:
Andrea Eagle Child
Oki, my name is Andrea Eagle Child, I am currently attending BCC in the Health Science (Pre-Nursing), working towards becoming a Registered Nurse. Since becoming apart of the NARCH grant, as an intern, I have obtained so much knowledge and have gained confidence in my research and writing skills. This past August, we had the privilege to attending MSU for training in Biosafety for Laboratory Workers and received an extensive tour of their labs and new technology. My last research project was on Juvenile Dermatomyositis, this hit home for me because my nephew has this rare disease. I look forward and I am excited for up-coming new research projects. I would like to do more research with-in our Blackfeet Community that affect our community, such as homelessness, poverty, single parents, and the child welfare system.
My name is Georgina Efigenio and I am a student at BCC currently seeking an Associates in Health Science. After earning said degree, I plan to join the BSN program here at BCC. Through the NARCH grant, I had the opportunity to research causation of high STD rates in the United States. The US has the highest STD rates in the developed world. Currently, the US favors an abstinence-only curriculum that contributes to the high STD rates due to its limit on sexual education and information students receive. Adopting a Comprehensive Sexual Education curriculum can improve sexual and reproductive health which helps in reducing STD rates. The comprehensive curriculum also decreases the number of unintended pregnancies, promotes gender equality, and increases condom use.
Alumni Spotlight: Graduated Interns
My name is Jahly Flammond. I am a liberal arts major and my current subject of research is Blood Quantum.
Oki, my name is Tommi-Rae Trombley, I am an intern and student at the Blackfeet Community College. I am majoring in education so I can fulfill my passion to serve and help others. Over the summer I have researched historical trauma, another topic of interest to understand the Blackfeet history and the circumstances we face today.