Ho-Chunk Nation: What’s Happening Today

Last November, the Discover Wisconsin team released a series in partnership with Ho-Chunk Nation for National Native American Heritage Month, but we know that November isn’t the only time to see what Ho-Chunk is doing to be upstanding tribal members and good neighbors in their communities. Let’s get into what is happening today with the Ho-Chunk Nation tribe and how they are helping everyone discover their own interests and potential for themselves!

Meet Ryan J. Crain 

Photo Credit: Discover Mediaworks / Ryan J Crain at University of Wisconsin La Crosse

Ryan J. Crain is a Ho-Chunk Nation tribal member and the administrator of the Ho-Chunk Department of Education’s Demonstration Grant. Ryan’s connection to Ho-Chunk comes from his mom who proudly tells him, “the greatest gift she could give him was to be a part of the heritage.”

Ryan knows that being a part of the Ho-Chunk nation means they are a family and as that family, they always help each other. As a child, Ryan wasn’t always around the tribe and as he grew older and was ready to go to college, he was worried about the cost that is associated with a degree. Thanks to the higher education system within Ho-Chunk Nation, he was able to graduate debt-free! From then on, Ryan wanted to figure out how he could help give back to the Ho-Chunk Nation community, and is living out that purpose and dedication today!

What’s Happening Today

Photo Credit: Discover Mediaworks

Ho-Chunk Nation knows that it is important for each and every one of their members to discover their own interests and set goals to achieve the futures they envision for themselves. Ryan now is the Administrator of the Demonstration Grant through the nation. This new program is offered to kids from Kindergarten through 12th grade and involves participation from both the students and the parents or guardians. 

This program goes through life skills including social, emotional, and financial skills but also incorporates the Ho-Chunk Nation history, language and culture. Ryan wants to help teach these students how to engage in conversations, communicate effectively, learn how to network, and get a strong financial understanding. 

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Ho-Chunk Nation has always prided itself on being upstanding tribal members and good neighbors to the communities they are in every day. Learn more about how Ryan J. Crain is helping these members and students to discover the potential for their futures with the Demonstration Grant Program in this segment of a four-part series now: 


Kortnee Hass: Social Media Coordinator for Discover Mediaworks. A Wisconsin ‘now & forever’ transplant with a soft spot for squeaky cheese curds, craft breweries, and all things Wisconsin tourism.

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