For the first time in school history, Native American students at Salamanca Junior-Senior High School in upstate New York wore traditional regalia instead of graduation gowns during the school’s 131st commencement on June 23, 2017.The Salamanca Press reported that the ceremony opened with Ganö:nyö:k, the Seneca welcome, by J.W. Bova, “which seemed even more poignant this year with Native American students dressed in their traditional regalia for the first time in school history.” watch more..
The Board of Education unanimously approved a resolution in April granting the Native American students the option to wear their traditional regalia instead of caps and gown, reported The Salamanca Press.“This started out in February. Students came to me wanting to wear traditional regalia at graduation,” Jerry Musial, a history teacher who also teaches Seneca history, told The Salamanca Press. “There were some inquiries and it grew from there. They have gone through a long process and talked to a lot of different people along the way.”