The Pine Ridge Intercultural Service-Learning Immersion focuses on making participants part of the community. They live with Dallas Chief Eagle, a school counselor at Pine Ridge and one of the architects of the program.
“One of the things Dallas Chief Eagle told us was that ‘you don’t get to be tourists. We’re not going sight-seeing, we’re not seeing the Native Americans in their native areas, what you’re going to do is participate.’ And so what we set up, then, is students actually do a ‘sweat,’” Hof said. They watch a sun dance, visit schools and do whatever the rest of the community is doing.
Instead of planned service projects, they simply do what’s needed – construction, giving someone a ride or leaning up. One year, Hof and a few students even fixed Chief Eagle’s plumbing when it broke during their stay.
Dr. Hof provides this cultural emersion experience each summer and encourages not only CSP graduate students, but UNK students, staff, community members, leaders and any interested individuals to join him in this amazing opportunity.