Six NAPLP Alumni Tackle Digital Disparities during COVID-19 Pandemic

September 8, 2020

Angel Benally, a spring 2020 alumna of the NAPLP in professional attire.

Angel Benally, a spring 2020 alumna of the NAPLP, spent the summer as a strategy and policy interns for AT&T’s network dedicated to public safety agencies. (Courtesy photos)

Affordable broadband service is more important than ever, but limited connectivity on tribal lands has intensified the COVID-19 pandemic’s negative impact on the health and economic well-being of indigenous communities.

This summer, six alumni of the Native American Political Leadership Program (NAPLP) at the George Washington University interned at AT&T to facilitate tribal consultation and collaboration to develop individualized solutions to close the digital divide between Indian Country and the rest of the United States.

Run by the AT&T Center for Indigenous Politics & Policy (AT&T CIPP) in the College of Professional Studies, NAPLP provides full scholarships for participants to spend a spring or summer semester in D.C. to learn about Indigenous self-governance through research, tribal advocacy and governmental functions. 

"Our Native American Political Leadership Program students are stars on the rise, and these opportunities are evidence of the doors opened by the program for our alumni,” said Dr. Elizabeth Rule, director of AT&T CIPP. “I am so proud of them and of the good work they continue to do as they continue their professional development journeys.”

Learn more about how the six NAPLP alumni worked to address digital disparities in Indian Country through their summer internships in GW Today (Aug. 27, 2020).