The Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe (LLBO) established Leech Lake Tribal College by Tribal Resolution in July 1990. For two years, courses were offered in extension from the University of Minnesota at Duluth, Bemidji State University, Itasca and Brainerd Community Colleges. In the fall quarter of 1992, Leech Lake Tribal College began offering its own courses leading toward the Associate of Arts and the Associate of Applied Science Degrees.
The first Leech Lake Tribal College student was Sean Fahrlander, graduating with an Associate of Arts degree in Anishinaabe Language and Culture in the spring of 1993. In 1994, the College was accorded status as a Land Grant Institution by the United States Congress. Also, in 1994, seventeen graduates completed their Associate of Arts degrees and Associate of Applied Science degrees. By the spring of 1995, the number of graduates had increased to twenty-four.
The College moved classrooms and administration to the former Cass Lake High School building in the fall of 1994, resulting in greatly increased enrollment of 196 students. These students were enrolled in two-year Associate of Arts transfer degree programs, or in two-year technical programs leading to an Associate of Applied Science degree, or in one-year vocational programs. Today, Leech Lake Tribal College includes approximately 70 faculty, staff, administrators, and 250 full-time students. Most of our students come from the Leech Lake Reservation and the surrounding Reservations in Northern Minnesota. In addition, approximately 8% of the students enrolled at the College are non-Native American.
The College was accredited as a Vocational School in 1993. The College was awarded candidacy status with the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association in 2002, and awarded continuing candidacy status in 2004. After a final site visit in April 2006, the Higher Learning Commission bestowed full five-year accreditation on Leech Lake Tribal College, further cementing LLTC's status as an educational leader, and providing a springboard to tremendous growth in the ensuing years.
Leech Lake Tribal College is a member of the American Indian Higher Education Consortium and the National Association of Land Grant Institutions. The College receives its base funding from the Bureau of Indian Affairs under the authority of the Tribally Controlled Community College Act (Title I, P.L. 95-471).
The Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe adopted the original LLTC Charter in 1999 and established an independent Board of Trustees; in 2002, the LLBO revised the LLTC Charter. In 2003, Leech Lake Tribal College separated from the LLBO and assumed its own accounting and human resources functions, and the LLBO formally transferred all bank accounts, equipment, and some property to LLTC. Also, the IRS granted 501(c)(3) status to LLTC as a non-profit educational entity. While separately incorporated today, Leech Lake Tribal College still enjoys a vital relationship with the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe, and receives about 11% of its annual funding from the Band.
Leech Lake Tribal College is located on the Leech Lake Indian Reservation in north central Minnesota, three miles northwest of the town of Cass Lake. Four buildings have been completed on our new campus, and funding has been secured for construction of a fifth building, continuing the pattern of growth at LLTC. The 2007-08 academic year saw record student enrollment, and the 2008 graduating class was the largest in college history. We look forward to more of the same in the coming years!
According to the Anishinaabe worldview, humans did not weave the web of life, we are merely a strand in it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. Therefore, kinship among all of creation, not the mastery of our relatives (other humans, animals, plants, etc.) is vital to harmonious living. To adhere to this philosophy is to be guided by the following values:
Leech Lake Tribal College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools;
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The college holds memberships in the American Indian Science and Engineering Society, the American Indian Library Association, Collaboration for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning, Campus Compact, Collaboration of Anishinaabe Colleges and the American Indian Higher Education Consortium.
2007 Professional Peace officer Education Program Certification
2006 Accredited by the Higher learning Commission
2006 President Carpenter receives National TriO Achievers award
2006 Laureate, IBM ComputerWorld Honors Program