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Indiana University irks Native American alums with new hire

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BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Native American alumni from Indiana University are criticizing the school’s decision to hire someone who is not Native American for the position of director of the First Nations Educational and Cultural Center.

The (Bloomington) Herald-Times reports Sunday (http://bit.ly/2c4bqzQ ) that the former students say a Native American director would be better suited to support the students the center serves.

The center’s new director, Nicholas Belle, is not a citizen of any Indian nation and does not have Native American ancestry. But Belle previously volunteered at the center when he was a student and spent time on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota.

The university said in a statement the school is an equal opportunity employer and applicants were considered regardless of race, color, ethnicity or national origin.