Digication™, a leading provider of ePortfolios, has recognized UAA’s Native Student Services office and several of its key personnel with innovation and leadership awards for their launch of the new Native Cultural Identity ePortfolio.
UAA’s eWolf (ePortfolio) program was formally launched in Fall 2015 and provides students, faculty, staff, and alumni an ability to establish and curate their individual portfolios to document, share and showcase their work and learning.
UAA’s Native Students Services, under the leadership of Director Willie Templeton, received an Innovation Award for its insightful use of ePortfolios to explore native cultural identities. In addition, Sheila Randazzo (Transition Advisor) and Cheryl Turner (Office Manager) were recognized with individual Leadership Awards for their important role in launching these conversations.
The innovative use of the ePortfolios by UAA NSS is guided by key indigenous beliefs about learning. Many native peoples believe that it is through learning experiences that people come to realize how they are to live a healthy way of life. A healthy way of life demonstrates a balance of: knowledge, physical, provider, emotional, social, and spiritual wellness.
As Sheila Randazzo explains, “Alaska Native people are a strong people who have, for centuries, demonstrated tremendous ability to survive within their environment. They are now challenged with adapting to a new society in which they have come into contact with. During this era of transition, Alaska Native students can use the Native Cultural Identity ePortfolio to examine and record their journey of becoming aware of who they are. As students reflect on their identity, students can genuinely embrace self-acceptance and maintain a strong self-perception of themselves and their communities.”