2017-08-17 / Front Page

45th Annual Sinte Gleska University Graduation


Nick Tilsen of Thunder Valley CDC will be honored with an honorary degree at the 45th Sinte Gleska University Graduation. Nick Tilsen of Thunder Valley CDC will be honored with an honorary degree at the 45th Sinte Gleska University Graduation. MISSION – Sinte Gleska continues to build on its stellar reputation by celebrating the achievement of 46 of its students.

The 45th Annual Sinte Gleska University Graduation will be held at the Wakinyan Wanbli (Multi-Purpose) Building on Friday, August 25, 2017 at 1:00 PM. The Theme of this year’s graduation is: “Oyate Ta-Woihanble kin Yakuwapi na Ohiniciyapelo” (Pursuing and Achieving the Dream of the Oyate). This year the entire graduation will be streamed on the internet.

“You and your family with your instructors have all worked very hard and have accomplished an outstanding education achievement. We recognize and applaud you. This day of celebration belongs to you. We thank you and say this with pride and honor. Now with a collective mind and with all the people we look to the future and wish you success and happiness in all that you do,” said Lionel Bordeaux, Sinte Gleska University President.

At 10:00 AM the University will conduct a tour and naming ceremony to dedicate the new SGU Student Union in honor of Michael H. Benge and the SGU Student Services Center in honor of William Hay. A reception following the ceremony will be held at the Lakota Studies Tipi.

The Grand Entry of the Graduates will begin at 1:00 PM. The Keynote Addresses will be delivered by Dr. Cynthia Lindquest, President of Cankeska Cikana Community College at Spirit Lakota, North Dakota and Nick Tilsen, Executive Director, Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation of Pine Ridge, South Dakota.

The University will be granting Honorary Cultural Doctorate Degrees to Dr. Cynthia Lindquest, Nick Tilsen, Jim Bradford, and Roger Milk in recognition of their tribal education and governmental services to the Oceti Sakowin Oyate and to Sinte Gleska University.

“We, also, are mindful of what our SGU founding fathers and mothers, and our Lakota spiritual leaders put before us, that we all will continue to contribute to the building and strengthening of the road for the future generations. We will continue to make the Sicangu Oyate and Sinte Gleska University a strong nation and institution. Much remains to be addressed and accomplished as we all strive to have a future of human and spiritual endeavor in improving all aspects affecting the quality of our daily lives,” added Bordeaux.

Graduation Day will begin with a Sunrise Ceremony at 8:00 AM on the Antelope Lake Campus, followed by the Cleansing and Blessing of the Wakinyan Wanbli Building in preparation for receiving the graduates, guests, and staff in memory and honor of those who walked on into the spirit world this past year.

Following the Graduation Ceremonies, Sinte Gleska University will provide a meal in honor of the graduates.

“Sinte Gleska University Staff, Faculty and Administration thank the graduates for giving us the opportunity to assist you on your educational journey, we congratulate you on completing this part of your journey and wish you the best as you go forward to fulfill your life’s dreams,” wrote the school in a statement.

(Contact Brandon Ecoffey at

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