Eagle Feathers for 2020 Grads

Source: Gowanda Central School facebook

As conferral of diplomas for the Class of 2020 at Gowanda High continued daily through Friday, June 19, 2020 at Hillis Field, our Panther family noticed several of our Native American students wearing eagle feathers on their cap along with graduation tassels.

The Title VI program delivered the eagle feathers to Gowanda High seniors ahead of the 2020 commencement as a memento of the significance of their accomplishments. The Title VI program notes that the seniors have faced challenges and overcome obstacles to complete graduation requirements.

The seniors received the following message, outlining the meaning of the eagle feathers:

“When the world was new, Creator thought that there should be one who is the most special of all animals; land, water or air. This special one would have the ability to travel to Creator’s land bringing messages back and forth between the Creator’s land and Earth. He chose the Eagle to be designated as the only animal to take on this heavy responsibility.

So now when the Eagle gifts the earth with any of their feathers Human Beings gather the feathers and consider them to be a strong medicine. Honor, Strength, Bravery, Distinction are all qualities that we revere about the Eagle. Those same qualities are possessed by anyone that receives an Eagle’s feather. It is also said that people that have Eagle feathers carry the favor of Creator with them wherever they go. It is highly encouraged to treat an Eagle feather with the utmost respect and care always, and not to handle any feather unless they are in a good mind.

Accepting your feather is similar to making a vow to continue to demonstrate those exceptional traits and always follow the path of a good Human Being. With great honor and acknowledgement, you are bestowed an Eagle feather. Ja:göh.”

Pictured: Tia Thompson