Iḷisaġvik College

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Iḷisaġvik College
Motto Honoring your past, preparing for your future
Type Public Community College
Established 1996
President Pearl Kiyawn Nageak Brower
Address P.O Box 749
Barrow, AK 99723
, PO Box 479 Barrow, North Slope Borough AK, USA 99723
Campus Rural
Affiliations UArctic; AIHEC; Inupiat Community of the Arctic Slope (ICAS) tribal government
Website www.ilisagvik.edu

Iḷisaġvik College (Inupiaq: [iʎisɑʁβik]) is a public community college located in Utqiaġvik, Alaska, on the shore of the Arctic Ocean. Operated by the North Slope Borough, it is the only tribally-controlled college in Alaska and is the northernmost accredited community college in the United States. The college is located within the boundaries of the North Slope, an 89,000-square mile region of Arctic tundra which is not connected by road or rail. It is ice-locked nine months of each year. The region is home to the Inupiat Eskimos.


Bowhead Whale skull in front of Iḷisaġvik College main building

In 2005, IC was established as the only Tribal College in the state of Alaska. The college had its origins in 1986, when the North Slope Borough created the North Slope Higher Education Center, changing its name in 1991 to Arctic Sivunmun Iḷisaġvik College. In 1995 the Borough passed an ordinance incorporating Iḷisaġvik College as a public and independent non-profit corporation, and the school moved to the facility previously used by the United States Naval Arctic Research Laboratory (NARL). Iḷisaġvik College was the lead institution in the 1997 creation of the Consortium for Alaska Native Higher Education (CANHE).

The College serves the North Slope Borough and the Iñupiat people.


The IC programs:

  • model the local Inupiat traditions, values, and culture and
  • have substantial career and employment opportunities relevant to the workforce.[1]

IC is a two-year community college, which offers associate degree, one-year certificate, and semester-long endorsement programs, as well as short-term training courses. Fields of study at IC include:[1]

  • accounting
  • allied health
  • office administration
  • business management
  • computer technology
  • heavy truck operations
  • construction trades
  • industrial safety
  • Inupiat studies

On December 19, 2016, Iḷisaġvik announced that it will begin to offer a four-year program in business administration, starting in 2017.[2]


Accredited in 2003 by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities, it offers Associate's degrees as well as one-year certificates. IC is a member of the American Indian Higher Education Consortium (AIHEC), which is a community of tribally and federally chartered institutions working to strengthen tribal nations and make a lasting difference in the lives of American Indians and Alaska Natives. IC was created in response to the higher education needs of American Indians. IC generally serves geographically isolated populations that have no other means accessing education beyond the high school level.[1]


Iḷisaġvik College is sanctioned by the Inupiat Community of the Arctic Slope (ICAS) tribal government.


The Tuzzy Consortium Library is named after Evelyn Tuzroyluk Higbee, a member of the original Board of Higher Education for the college.

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Coordinates: 71°19′30″N 156°40′50″W / 71.32500°N 156.68056°W / 71.32500; -156.68056