NAIES 2018

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9th Annual Native American Indigenous Education Symposium 2018


Activism in Education Featured presentation by Sui-Lan Hookano (Taino and Native Hawaiian) and Asia Tail (Cherokee Nation)

9:00am - 9:30am: Check - in/Breakfast

9:30am-9:45am: Welcome Prayer

9:45am-10:00am: Assistant Chancellor for Equity and Inclusion and Chancellor of UW Tacoma, Welcome

10:00am-10:45am: Keynote address from Sui-Lan Hookano

11:00am-11:45am: Workshop for Educators/Elders with Sui-Lan Hookano

11:00am-11:45am: Student breakout sessions - Choose one below

Indigenous Student Panel: In this insightful session, students will be able to hear the experiences of indigneous college students and their journey in higher education. There will an opportunity to ask personal questions of navigating higher education specifically UW Tacoma. This workshop will be facilitated by Dr. Danica Miller.

It's All About You Workshop: Tired of being asked, “What do you want to do when you grow up?” In this workshop, we will take a different approach and you will answer different questions that matter to your family, community and – most of all - YOU.  You will also get college resources and career tools to help you prepare for your future goals and dreams.” This workshop will facilitated by DJ Crisostomo and Vanessa Frias.

12:00pm-1:00pm: Lunch

1:00pm-2:30pm: Afternoon keynote address by Asia Tail for Educators and Elders

1:00pm-2:30pm: Students will participate in a photo scavenger hunt around campus. This will be an interactive and fun way to explore UW Tacoma!

2:30pm-3:00pm: Closing remarks


Sui-Lan Hookano

The daughter of George Ho'okano and Lucille Fernandez-Fraticelli Sui-Lan Ho'okano is from the Island of Hawaii, Hilo and is of Hawaiian, Taino Indian, Puerto Rican, African, Chinese, French ancestry. 

Sui-Lan Ho'okano current journey is as the Cultural Program Director for the Enumclaw School District and works collectively with the Muckleshoot Tribe, surrounding community districts, and educational institutions. Sui-Lan earned BA in Political Science and Psychology with an emphasis on cultural environmental pathways at University Hawaii Hilo. Sui-Lan has an AS degree in criminal Justice and cultural environmental studies.  Sui-Lan is currently completing her Master in Public Administration Tribal governance at Evergreen State College and continues to be an active educator that leads by example. 

Sui-Lan has over 25 years working collectively with educational institutions community partners locally, nationally, and globally in honoring and Reestablish understanding of Indigenous pathways, cultural capital, and traditional shared values weaved within education.   

Sui-Lan currently serves on several community boards and committees here in Washington; Green River College Diversity and Equity Committee GDEC; Pierce College ASPIRE committee, Pacific Island Summit Uprise Pierce committee, Muckleshoot Tribal College and Career Committee, servicing over 3000 indigenous communities and students in reestablishing Indigenous cultural educational pathways. Sui-lan was the opening speaker for this year’s Washington Cross-Institution Faculty of Color Mentorship Program Spring Retreat “Restorative Practices through Our Own Stories” Sui-Lan has presented at SOCC, FOCC, YELL and community events and conferences here in Washington as well as out of state communities. 

Sui-Lan Ho'okano continues to share her gifts that she has been gifted and believes by sharing the true meaning of aloha and standing firmly in the present, with our backs to the future, our eyes upon our past we will be are able to access the deep and abundant ʻike (knowledge)of our Kupuna (elders) It is through our Kupuna and their wisdom that we will be able to grow, cultivate, elevate, and expand our ʻike for the benefit of self, ʻohana, community, and ultimately our global communities.

To quote Sui-Lan “you have to know yourself in order to grow yourself”

 ‘A‘ohe pau ka ‘ike i ka hālau ho‘okahi.

All knowledge is not learned in just one school.

One can learn from many source

Asia Tail

Asia Tail is an artist, curator, and arts administrator based in Tacoma, Washington. Asia attended the Cooper Union School of Art in New York on a four-year full-tuition scholarship and graduated with a BFA and the Brandon Burns Stewart Memorial Prize for Excellence in Painting in 2014. Her work has recently been featured in the exhibition NW Art Now @ TAM (formerly the Northwest Biennial), in Quota at SOIL Gallery in Seattle, and in Moon Moan at 950 Gallery in Tacoma.

As an extension of her art making, Asia also curates special projects and art exhibitions, with an emphasis on Indigenous artists. In 2015, she created the Contemporary Native Voices project for Tacoma Art Museum, interviewing over 20 individuals on Native American representation in art, and integrating Native voices into the museum’s galleries through wall text, interactive activities, and commissioned performances. In 2016, she independently curated her first exhibition, Protect the Sacred at Spaceworks Gallery in Tacoma, which brought together work from 26 Native American artists and raised funds to fight the Dakota Access Pipeline construction in North Dakota. Her new curatorial project, yəhaw̓, co-curated with Tracy Rector and Satpreet Kahlon, will open in January 2019 at King Street Station in Seattle. 

Asia currently works part time as the Arts Program Coordinator for the City of Tacoma's Office of Arts & Cultural Vitality, and as a freelance consultant on advisory committees and selection panels for local arts organizations including Seattle Art Museum, Artist Trust, Pratt Fine Arts, 4Culture, Seattle Office of Arts and Culture, Spaceworks Tacoma, Indigenous Showcase, and others.

She is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, and a proud member of the diverse Urban Native community in the Pacific Northwest.


Registration for the NAIES 2018 is now closed due to max capacity. If you would like to be put on the waiting list please email

We encourage high school and college students, staff, faculty, educators, elders, and community members to attend this symposium.

Clock hours are NOT available for this event.

For any questions, please contact Nedralani Mailo at