The Navajo Nation is planning on purchasing property near Fort Lewis College in the future to provide off-campus housing for Navajo students. The timeline for when this would take place is not yet known.
In an interview with Colorado Public Radio, the president of the Navajo Nation, Russell Begaye, mentioned that the Navajo Nation is interested in purchasing property near FLC to provide an off-campus housing option for Navajo students.
The purchase would include condos or apartments in the Hillcrest area, FLC public affairs officer, Mitch Davis said.
Some students prefer living off campus, and this would give Navajo students an off-campus housing option, while still allowing them to live near campus, Davis said.
Davis said the housing on campus is not yet filled, so the demand for the apartment purchase is not urgent. He thinks the investment would be something everyone involved would want to take their time with.
The apartments would not be purchased to accommodate a high demand for on-campus housing, but would instead offer an off-campus option with a positive atmosphere for Navajo Students, Joshua Emerson, president of American Indian Business Leaders, said.
“It’s trying to have Navajo students have the best atmosphere to graduate from Fort Lewis College,” Emerson said.
The financial aspect still requires more planning as the idea is still new and has not been planned in depth yet, Davis said.
As far as attracting students to FLC, specialized housing for Native American students could be a good selling point. However, because of the Native American Tuition Waiver, FLC does not have a difficult time attracting Native American students, Davis said.
Davis and Emerson both said more meetings are expected to take place to further examine this project.
The timeline for this project is not yet clear, but it could take place in the near future, Emerson and Davis said.
It is not yet known if the housing would be for Navajo students or all Native American students, Emerson and Davis said.