The Ponca Tribe of Nebraska’s Education Department was first established in 1992. From 1992-93, the BIA managed the department. Then in 1994, the Tribe gained control of its own funds and implemented three programs within the department: Higher Education, Adult Vocational Training and the Direct Employment Program. While the Direct Employment Program would end in 2002, additional programs were established. These include the General Educational Department Program (1996), Masters Program, and our Youth Initiatives Program, with the latter two programs established during the 1997-98 school year.

Funds to administer the Tribe’s Department of Education (DOE) are allocated through the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA).

Attention Students:

The application deadline to participate in our Youth Initiatives Program for the 2021-22 school year is July 31st.  Any applications received after that date will be considered for the 2022-23 school year.

To participate in our Higher Education/Adult Vocational Training Programs, please submit your application by August 15th.  Any application received after that date will be considered for winter quarter/spring semester. 

New Scholarship Opportunity:
Building for the future

The Ponca Tribe Education Department is pleased to announce a new scholarship opportunity for enrolled Ponca members pursuing a bachelor’s degree or adult vocational training. Application deadline is August 15, 2022. For more information, or to apply, use the links below or contact the Education Department at 402-371-8834, or email [email protected] or [email protected].

Building for the Future

This scholarship was made possible by a private donor who wishes to remain anonymous.  Currently, the amount of the scholarship is $1,000.00; and the student must demonstrate “need.”  Also, depending on the student’s “need,” this scholarship may be awarded in conjunction with tribal assistance or independent of tribal assistance.  

The deadline to submit for consideration of this scholarship is August 15, 2022.  All applications must be completed and received by this date.  Names will then be entered in a drawing.  And once the name of the winner is known, he or she will be notified immediately.

  1. Building for the Future Cover Letter
  2. Building for the Future Guidelines
  3. Building for the Future Application
  4. Building for the Future Contract
  5. Building for the Future Financial Need Form

Student Loan Debt Relief Plan

The Department of Education will provide up to $20,000 in debt cancellation to Pell Grant recipients with loans held by the Department of Education, and up to $10,000 in debt cancellation to non-Pell Grant recipients. Borrowers are eligible for this relief if their individual income is less than $125,000 ($250,000 for married couples). The application will be available no later than when the pause on federal student loan repayments terminates at the end of the year.

Contact Information

Pat Eichberger, Director of Education
[email protected]

Aubrey Knudsen, Education Administrative Assistant
[email protected]

Ponca Tribe of Nebraska Department of Education
1800 Syracuse Avenue
Norfolk NE 68701
Phone: 402-371-8834
Fax: 402-371-7564