Native Students

Native Students

The University of Nebraska–Lincoln recognizes the history and significance of how the plains tribes and cultures have shaped Nebraska. We foster and support Native culture through scholarships, academic programs, research, events and celebration of Native contributions.

Scholarships & In-State Tuition

Nebraska offers scholarships to promising students who identify and understand their Native American culture and seek to create opportunities to advance their community.

Native American Heritage Scholarship

$2,000 to full direct cost of attendance renewable for up to 4 years

Learn More about the Native American Heritage Scholarship

Native American Heritage Scholarship

This scholarship seeks to identify and attract talented student scholars who have demonstrated knowledge and experience in the Native American community or backgrounds and are prepared to use this knowledge to contribute to the education of their fellow students.

How to Apply

  1. Apply for Admission.
  2. Apply for Diversity Enhancement Scholarships through MyRed by February 1 of your senior year.
  3. Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) before June 1.

This scholarship is renewable for up to four academic years (fall and spring semesters). Selection is based on financial need and student's academic profile. Applicants must be Nebraska residents.

Nebraska Emerging Leaders Scholarship

$2,000 award renewable for up to 4 years

Learn More about the Nebraska Emerging Leaders Scholarship

Nebraska Emerging Leaders Scholarship

Awarded to students identified as emerging leaders through the Diversity Leadership Symposia, First Generation Symposia, Native Leadership Symposium, and/or Nebraska Achievement Banquet.

How to Apply

  1. Apply and be admitted to the University of Nebraska–Lincoln no later than January 15.
  2. Be nominated by a school counselor or community leader to attend one of our diversity programs such as but not limited to: the Diversity Leadership Symposia, DREAM Big Academy, the First Generation Symposium, Native Leadership Symposium, and/or a Nebraska Achievement Banquet. Anyone that attends these events will be considered. Students can attend at any time during their high school career to be eligible.
  3. Students must meet academic requirements as determined by a scholarship committee.
  4. Take the ACT or SAT on or before the December national test dates of senior year.
  5. File FAFSA no later than June 1. Financial Need is not required but all students must complete the FAFSA to finalize the award.

This scholarship is only available to residents of Nebraska.

This scholarship is renewable for up to four academic years.

The Emerging Leaders program for first year students is designed to:
  • Support their transition to the university
  • Connect them to campus leaders and networks
  • Hone their leadership and diversity skills

Emerging Leaders scholars will participate in a leadership seminar through the Center for Academic Success and Transition (CAST). The program is designed to create experiences for personal leadership development and reflection, guiding scholars toward continued success. Through direct connections with inspiring campus leaders and individualized academic success coaching, scholars can build their own inclusive network and make a difference in their community.

Learn More

Tribal College Scholarship

Full in-state tuition for up to 120 credit hours

Learn More about the Tribal College Scholarship

How to Apply: Tribal College Scholarship

Awarded to graduates of Nebraska high schools who are in progress or recently completed a 2-year degree from one of a few specific tribal colleges. See list of colleges below.

How to Apply

  1. Apply for Admission.
  2. Apply for the FAFSA.
  3. Supporting admission materials are due March 1 for the fall semester and October 1 for the spring semester.

Students must have a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher from their coursework and must be in progress or recently completed a 2-year degree from one of the following tribal colleges: Blackfeet Community College, Cheyenne River Community College, Dull Knife Memorial College, Fort Belknap College, Fort Berthold Community College, Fort Peck Community College, Haskell Indian Nations University, Little BigHorn College, Little Priest Tribal College, Nebraska Indian Community College, Oglala Lakota College, Sinte Gleska University, Sisseton Wahpeton Community College, Sitting Bull College, Turtle Mountain Community College, and United Tribes Technical College.

This scholarship is renewable.

Ponca Tribe Scholarship

$4,800 maximum for members of the Nebraska Ponca Tribe

Learn More about the Ponca Tribe Scholarship
Chief Standing Bear Journey for Justice Scholarship

$1,500 for members of a recognized North American tribe

Learn More about the Chief Standing Bear Journey for Justice Scholarship
View All Scholarships

There are many other scholarships available for incoming students.

Learn More about all scholarships

Tribes Eligible for In-State Tuition

The University of Nebraska–Lincoln offers in-state tuition rates to enrolled members of the following 24 tribes listed below who have historical and present ties with Nebraska, whether they are residents of Nebraska or not.

Arapaho, Hidatsa, Missouria, Sac and Fox, Arikara, Jicarilla Apache, Omaha, Dakota Sioux, Northern Cheyenne, Iowa, Otoe, Lakota Sioux, Southern Cheyenne, Kickapoo, Pawnee, Nakota Sioux, Comanche, Kiowa, Ponca, Santee Sioux, Crow, Mandan, Potawatomie, and Winnebago

Residency for In-state Tuition

Residency for In-State Tuition


To be assured of your residency status, fill out the Application for Residency Classification for Tuition Purposes in your MyRED account. When you get to the Residency Categories section, look at category J for instructions.

View Residency Policy

Tribal Card

It is the responsibility of the student to submit a copy of his or her tribal card to the Office of Admissions if he/she wants to be considered a resident for tuition purposes. Students who do not provide this documentation will be determined to be nonresidents without further notification.


If you have further questions about whether or not you qualify, please don't hesitate to contact us.

You Belong Here

Connecting with people in and out of the classroom is part of what makes college awesome. Plus getting involved with activities that interest you is a fun and fast way to feel at home on campus.

Native Leadership Symposium

The Native Leadership Symposium celebrates and promotes leadership in diverse communities. Attendees are eligible for a $2,000 scholarship.

Learn More about the Native Leadership Symposium

University of Nebraska Inter-Tribal Exchange (U.N.I.T.E)

U.N.I.T.E. promotes the progress and development of Native American students at Nebraska.

Learn More about the University of Nebraska Inter-Tribal Exchange (U.N.I.T.E)

Native American Heritage Celebrations

Events are held on campus during Native American Heritage Month and throughout the year.

Learn More about the Native American Heritage Celebrations


Staying active enhances your college experience physically, mentally and socially.

Learn More about Recreation

Lincoln's Native Community

Lincoln is home to numerous organizations and events that celebrate and support Native Heritage.

Learn More

Broader Community

Claire M. Hubbard First Peoples of the Plains Lectures

This annual lecture and reception is presented to help advance the understanding and appreciation of the cultural heritage of the First Peoples of the Plains.

Past lectures included: Gyasi Ross, Gena Timberman, and "Warrior Women" film creators Elizabeth Castle and Christina King with Marcy Gilbert and Madonna Thunder Hawk.

Learn More

First Peoples of the Plains Exhibit

This gallery exhibit is located on the 3rd floor of the university's Morrill Hall.

Learn More

Indian Center, Inc.

The Indian Center is located near campus and provides:

  • Cultural engagement
  • Volunteer Opportunities
  • Annual Pow-wow
  • Mental Health Services
  • Health Initiatives
Learn More

Nebraska Commission on Indian Affairs

Located a short distance from campus at the State Capitol, the Nebraska Commission on Indian Affairs is the state liaison between the four headquarter tribes of the Omaha, Ponca, Santee Sioux and Winnebago Tribes of Nebraska.

The Commission's activities include:

  • Standing Bear Breakfast and Symposium
  • Providing Scholarships
  • Leadership development
  • Advocacy for Tribes and Indian citizens in Nebraska
Learn More

Academic Programs

The Center for Great Plains Studies

The University of Nebraska–Lincoln is home to this regional research and teaching program whose mission is to foster the study of the people and the environment of the Great Plains. Explore its Native art exhibitions, events highlighting Native heritage and academic majors.

Ethnic Studies

Examine factors that have affected your life and experiences, both past and present. A variety of majors, minors and courses are offered through the Institute of Ethnic Studies, including: Native American Studies, African American and African Studies, and U.S. Latina/o and Latin American studies.

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