Cameron Cuch of Fort Duchesne, Utah, and a member of the Northern Ute tribe, has been named assistant director of Colorado State University’s Native American Student Services.
In his new role, Cuch will be assisting NASS Director Beverly Fenton in recruitment, retention, graduation and community outreach. "Cameron brings the understanding, the skills, the values, the energy and the enthusiasm the job requires," says Fenton. "He’s only been here a short time, but already he’s made a big difference."
Cuch, who was born in northeastern Utah on the Northern Ute Reservation, said he is looking forward to making Colorado his home. "It feels really good to be in Colorado because this land is the ancestral home of the Utes," he said. "I’m looking forward to working with students from many tribes. I would like to see them come here, feel at home and know that they have the support of this office and the support of the university."
Cuch earned his master’s in education in critical, cultural and curriculum studies at the University of Utah in 1998, and received his Bachelor of Arts in political science from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1996.
While at the University of Utah, Cuch worked as a teaching and research assistant and helped to develop course curricula and programs to help education professionals with awareness and sensitivity training in Native American culture. Additionally, he counseled and supervised at-risk students at Utah State Youth Corrections.
"I feel that my role in this world is to help people," Cuch says. "It’s like throwing a stone into the water. You’re the center and you’re influencing the people with whom you come in contact, which ripples out to friends and family locally and across the state, around the country. We make a difference all the time." Cuch feels that he has been able to exert a positive influence with many of the students he’s counseled. "I’ve gone home to the reservation and some of the students with whom I’ve worked were really proud of themselves, telling me they’d be graduating soon. That’s really special.
"I was lucky to have supportive parents who instilled a lot of positive values and really taught me to be proud of who I am," he said. "For Indian students growing up, the stronger they are within their culture, the better they do in the outside world. I feel I’ve been very fortunate that way."
Cuch’s father, Forrest Cuch, is a member of the Northern Ute Tribe of Fort Duchesne and director for the Utah Division of Indian Affairs. His mother, Carla Cuch, is from the Wampanoag Tribe of Aquinnah in Massachusetts.