Diné College Secures $1.2 Million Grant from Department of Energy for STEM Building Enhancement

Diné College Secures $1.2 Million Grant from Department of Energy for STEM Building Enhancement

20 December 2023

SHIPROCK, NM — – Diné College is pleased to announce the receipt of a significant grant from the Department of Energy, for $1.2 million, to support STEM and environmental education at its Shiprock South campus. This funding will specifically support the acquisition of Furniture, Fixtures, and Equipment (FF&E) for the new STEM building, a vital addition to the campus infrastructure. The Principal Investigator for this project will be Mr. Leon Jackson, Director of Capital Projects at Diné College.

The Department of Energy’s investment underscores the importance of Diné College in advancing STEM education and environmental justice in the region. President of Diné College, Monty Roessel, expressed his enthusiasm for this support, stating, “This generous funding from the Department of Energy will help us fulfill our commitment to provide the best possible education and resources for our students. The new STEM building will serve as a hub for innovation, research, and academic excellence for our students and the Shiprock community.”

The FF&E for the STEM building will not only facilitate cutting-edge research and learning opportunities for Diné College students but also contribute to the broader educational ecosystem of the Navajo Nation and the surrounding communities.

Furthermore, this grant aligns with the Department of Energy’s mission to promote environmental justice (EJ) and benefit disadvantaged communities near Department of Energy sites. Diné College’s strategic location places it within 200 miles of two such sites, making it a key partner in addressing EJ concerns in the region.

“On September 22, 2023, LM awarded 5 environmental justice (EJ) grants to the following minority-serving institutions (MSI); Central Wyoming College in WY (200 miles from 3 LM sites); San Juan College in NM (200 miles from 8 LM sites); Diné College in AZ (200 miles from 2 LM sites); Navajo Technical University in NM (200 miles from 8 LM sites); and Fort Lewis College in CO (200 miles from 8 LM sites). The objective of the grants is to foster EJ activities that will benefit disadvantaged communities near LM sites. Each MSI was awarded $1.2M for FY 2024 to execute EJ activities. The awarding of these grants establishes new EJ partnerships with MSIs, increases foundational EJ program activities, and enables LM to reach a larger number of affected communities.”

Diné College is committed to utilizing this grant to not only enhance STEM education but also to contribute to the advancement of environmental justice, ultimately benefiting the Navajo Nation and the broader community.

Diné College, located in the heart of the Navajo Nation, is the first tribal college established in the United States. It serves as a cornerstone of higher education for the Navajo Nation and surrounding communities, offering a wide range of academic programs and opportunities for students to achieve their educational and career goals. Diné College is dedicated to providing a culturally rich and inclusive learning environment, fostering innovation and research, and promoting environmental justice within the region.


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