The Navajo Nation, the largest semi-autonomous Native American territory, spreads out over 27,000 miles through parts of Arizona, Utah, and New Mexico. Its well-developed Tribal Government, which began in 1923, to administer land leases to oil companies, currently oversees 110 chapters. The Navajo Nation has its own judicial system, law enforcement, legislative, health department and education department. In an effort to promote the importance of education, provide opportunity for betterment and help the Navajo Nation thrive, the Tribal Government established the Navajo Higher Education Department in 1972. Today, known as The Office of Navajo Nation and Financial Assistance (ONNSFA), it offers both need and academic based scholarships. In fact, about 80% of all scholarships awarded by ONNSFA are need based with the remaining 20% of awards falling into the academic excellence category. These scholarships are extended to recipients with the expectations that they will return to the Navajo Nation and share their knowledge and skills with those that provided them with the opportunity to pursue their dreams and hopes.
The Chief Manuelito Scholarship awards $7,000 to high school seniors who have achieved a minimum ACT score ranging from 21-29 and a GPA ranging from 3.10 – 3.80 and who have completed the required Navajo Language and Government courses before graduation. For undergraduate students seeking additional awards, the applicants must have completed 24 credit hours and have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher. In order to be eligible, applicants must submit a completed scholarship application package that includes the following: Certificate of Indian Blood, Official Transcripts from your high school, and the Letter of Admission of the institution you are planning to attend. In addition, all applicants must complete the FAFSA and submit a Financial Need Analysis to the financial aid office of the school you are planning to attend The Navajo Nation Scholarship deadlines are June 25 for the Fall/Academic Year and November 25 for the Winter/Spring. More information on the scholarship can be found online.