Keep going strong!

We're just over a month through the semester and midterms are just around the corner! Ten weeks of instruction remain. We hope everything is going well for you in your classes, but if you need any help, we're here for you. Your advisor is a great resource and can help you find tutors in our office and around campus, decide whether or not you're going to drop that class you're worried about, change your major, help you get financially ready for next semester, help you find counseling services, the list goes on. Don't hesitate to go to them with any concerns you have! And if there's anything we can do for you as a department, be sure to make a suggestion.

Student Club Potluck

If you're interested, but not sure if you want to join a club this semester, this might be the perfect event for you! The Native student clubs are joining up to host a potluck in the Gathering Room on October 5th from 5-7:00pm.

Here are the clubs that will be in attendance:
  • Native Student Union (NSU)
  • American Indian Science & Engineering Society (AISES)
  • Native Alaska Business Leaders (ANSWA)
  • Alaska Native Education Student Association (ANESA)
  • Festival of Native Arts Club
  • Iñu-Yupiaq Dance Group
Winter Warm-Up
That familiar crisp air has arrived. We're waking up to frost on sidewalks, snow has fallen, sweaters are making an appearance, and pumpkin spice lattes are back. Do you have all of the gear you need to keep you warm for winter? Do you have too much gear that you'd like to see get used? Winter Warm-Up might be the solution! 

This year, Winter Warm-Up starts up at 10:00am on October 8th at the Hess Rec Center. This is a free-cycle event. Stop by to pick up what you need and drop off what you don't! If you want to donate to the cause but can't make it to the actual event, you can take your items to any drop-off location through October 7th. We have one conveniently located in the Brooks Building. Other locations include the Duckering, Gruening, Murie, and Bunnell Buildings, Constitution Hall, Signers' Hall, the Keith B. Mather Library, and the Fine Arts Complex. 

Festival of Native Arts Logo Contest

Festival of Native Arts is on a mission to find its 2017 logo! Will you be the one to create it? The winner of the contest will receive one UAF undergraduate tuition credit (value = $192) and complimentary Festival items featuring the artwork. Be sure to submit your entry to the Department of Alaska Native Studies and Rural Development by 5:00pm on October 14th.

The Festival of Native Arts is a student-run event that brings together people from all over Alaska to celebrate culture. This year, it will be held March 2-4, 2017 and the theme is "Carry the Drum, Carry Your Culture." If logo-creation isn't your thing but you still want to help out, you are more than welcome! The Festival Planning Committee meets every Wednesday from 1-2:00pm in the Brooks Building Gathering Room.

Positive Connection Nights

Rural Student Services is hosting two Positive Connection Nights in the Brooks Gathering Room this month! 

October 14th at 5:00pm
The theme is potluck! Just in time for midterms, tonight will be all about relaxing, eating some good food, and lounging. We'll be making a big batch of something, but please bring a dish to share as well! 

October 28th at 5:00pm
This PCN is Halloween-themed. Get the extra mile out of your costume by wearing it to the event. We'll be cooking up some spooky snacks and celebrating RSS style! Which basically means, we don't know what we're going to do yet, but it's going to be awesome. Stay tuned on Facebook to find out!

Student Highlights

Esau Sinnok

"Hello! My name is Esau Sinnok and I am Inupiaq Eskimo. I'm the leading student officer for Native Games run through Rural Student Services, and I am also a representative for the Nanook Diversity and Action Center. I am also an Arctic Youth Ambassador for the U.S. Chairmanship of the Arctic Council. UAF is my second home; I have been visiting the campus for the past six years for summer programs and summer school. UAF is a great school as it provides a wide range of degrees and certificates that anyone can apply for!"

Esau Sinnok is a Tribal Management major from the village of Shishmaref, Alaska. He is also a student ambassador for UAF. This past summer, Esau interned with Alaska Geographic as a Youth Program Assistant. This summer he was invited to the White House and recognized as a Champion for Climate Equity. Among the people recognized, he was the youngest. Just recently, he was awarded the Denny Wilcher Award for Young Environmental Activists from the Alaska Conservation Foundation for their 2016 Conservation Achievement Awards. Esau challenges other students to "get out of your comfort zone!" As a UAF Ambassador, he is open for questions. Check out his page here.

Terrell Jones

My name is Terrell Jones, I am a Rural Development Major, and this summer I did an internship with First Alaskans Institute. First Alaskans Institute is a non-profit organization that strives to promote Alaska's future leaders by placing them into organizations where they can be utilized to their fullest potiential. 

For my internship, I was placed into ASRC, where I studied the traditional uses of plants on the north slope and traveled to Point Hope to conduct interviews with local elders for the project. The entire experience was inspirational.

Alaska Federation of Natives

AFN is coming up soon! The  Elders and Youth Conference will be held on October 17-19th and the convention will be on October 20-22nd. If you plan to go to either of these events in lieu of classes, make sure you're caught up and talk to your instructors about being absent from class. Midterms are generally set to take place around this time as well, so plan ahead! 

Take Wing Visit

Take Wing Alaska is a program that aims to ease the transition of Lower Kuskokwim School District students to urban, post-secondary education. They'll be visiting UAF on October 17th and are looking for college students to show them the ropes. If you wouldn't mind letting one or two high school students shadow you to your class that morning, get in touch with Naaqtuuq Robertson.

RAHI Reunion

The Rural Alaska Honors Institute will be holding their annual reunion in the Gathering Room on Thursday, October 20th from 5-7:00pm. If you would like to attend, please RSVP to, (907) 474-5876, or (800) 476-6886. 

AlcoholEdu and Haven Reminder

All first-year students: Don't forget to complete your AlcoholEdu and Haven training by October 31st! Failure to do so will result in a $150 fine being placed on your account. You can access the training on UAOnline.

Free Plants

Rural Student Services is home to over 50 plants and we're sharing the love! If you're a plant person or would just like to add a little life to your dorm room, stop by and pick one up. We have two varieties of spider plants, variegated and non-variegated, that need good homes. If you're feeling intimidated, don't. Spider plants are some of the easiest plants to care for. In case you need convincing that taking one home is right for you, here are some fun facts.
  • Plants produce oxygen
  • Plants increase the humidity of a room
  • Plants improve air quality
  • Plants reduce stress
  • Plants are great for decor
  • Plants can be better life-partners than people as they will never ask you to do the dishes or take out the trash
Important Dates
  • Oct. 17 - Deadline to apply for fall 2016 graduation
  • Oct. 31 - Deadline to complete part two of AlcoholEdu and Haven
  • Oct. 31 - Spring 2017 course list available
  • Nov. 14 - Begin registration and fee payment for Spring 2017
Student Success Workshops

UAF's Academic Advising department hosts several free workshops each semester that focus on skills that every student needs to develop. Be sure to take a look at the following events and see if there's something you should attend!
  • Oct. 11 - Keys to Being an Online Student
  • Oct. 25 - Managing Stress & Test Anxiety
  • Nov. 1 - DegreeWorks & Schedule Planner
  • Nov. 8 - Put Your Degree to Work



If you need a little yoga in your life, stop by the Gathering Room on Fridays from 8-9:00am. Kathleen Meckel is instructing free sessions all semester long and welcomes everyone to check it out. Be sure to bring a yoga mat, water bottle, and yoga blocks for support if you have them.

Alternative Spring Break

Alternative Spring Break is a program that aims to give  students a chance to make a positive difference in communities through hands-on work. This year, the LIVE Program will be taking a trip to San Francisco. The area has experienced an abundance of earthquakes and forest fires recently. Relief efforts will be provided in the form of reconstruction and youth development activities. If you would like to make a difference with your Spring Break, this is a great opportunity! Click here to learn more.

Tutoring Services

We hope you're doing great in all of your classes! However, if you feel like you're falling behind or just need a little extra help, make sure you seek out a tutor.

We have tons of help on campus, at CTC, and even online! Whether you need to talk to someone about Math, English, Science, or a Foreign Language, you're covered. Visit our  tutor page  to figure out where and when tutors are available in your subject. 

In the Gathering Room at RSS, we have tutors from the American Indian Science and Engineering Society to help you with Math, Science, and Engineering questions. You can view their schedule here  . We also have tutors from 2-4:00pm Monday through Thursday from the Writing Center and another from the Speaking Center on Tuesdays from 2-4:00pm! 

Join a Club!

A big part of college life is getting involved in things that you're interested in. Not only do you get a chance to make a difference or submerge yourself into your hobbies, but you get to do it with other, like-minded people who have similar goals in mind. Those friendships that you create may be just the thing you need to forge ahead. Also, a ton of clubs provide free food, so there's that.

Here are some of the clubs we're involved with:

Aarigaa is a group for students to come together to learn about God, worship, and spend time with one another.
Aarigaa Fairbanks Director: Tricia Ivanoff (907) 625-1622

Alaska Native Education Student Association (ANESA)
ANESA is a student organization for students interested in becoming elementary or high school teachers. All students are welcome to join whether or not they are majoring or interested in this area.
Staff Advisor :  Colleen Angaiak  (907) 474-7871

American Indian Sciences & Engineering Society (AISES) 
AISES is a student organization for students majoring or interested in the natural sciences, computer science, engineering, wildlife, mathematics, health fields, as well as students who intend to be math and/or science teachers.
Staff Advisor: Olga Skinner
(907) 474-7871
Faculty Advisor: Greg Owens (907) 474-6620

Alaska Native Social Workers Association (ANSWA)

ANSWA is a student organization for students majoring or interested in social work, sociology, psychology, human service technology.
Staff Advisor: Gabrielle Russell (907) 474-7871
Faculty Advisor: LaVerne Demientieff (Social Work Department)

Festival of Native Arts 
The Alaska Native Studies Department hosts the annual Festival of Native Arts in March. Volunteers are needed to assist the student-operated organization. Your energy and ideas will contribute to this successful event.
Contact  Alaska Native Studies Dept, (907)474-6889 or (907)474-6528

The Iñu-Yupiaq Dance Group is a student dance club that performs many Inupiaq and Yup'ik songs and dances. Everyone is invited to participate.
Staff Advisor: Minnie Naylor (907) 474-6616

Native American Business Leaders (NABL)
NABL is a student organization for students majoring or interested in accounting, applied accounting, applied business, business administration, economics, or rural development.
Faculty Advisor: Sam Alexander (907) 474-5571

Native Games 
This is a group of students that get together to play Native games.
Staff Advisor: 
Gabrielle Russell
(907) 474-7871

Native Student Union of UAF
Group of students with intentions and ideas for a positive change in politics.  Everyone is invited to attend the meetings.
Faculty Advisor: Charlene Stern (907) 474-5293 

Unangax̂ Language and Culture Club 
The Unangax̂ Language and Culture Club is a club focusing on the Unangax̂ (Aleut) culture to revitalize the language and share another Alaska Native culture with the UAF campus.
Student Coordinator: Bobbie McNeley  

If you're interested in learning more about these clubs, swing by our Blast Off event! We'll be talking about these and more at 5:00pm on Monday in the Brooks Building Gathering Room. 

Bivin Memorial Scholarship 
David E. Knox Memorial Nursing Fellowship

Rural Student Services Office Hours

Fall 2016 Office Hours:
Monday through Friday - 8-5:00pm

If you need to schedule an appointment with an advisor, please call (907) 474-7871 (locally) or (888) 478-1452 (toll free within Alaska).

You can also schedule online at:

Office location: Second Floor Brooks Buildling