Tiarra Little ’12

To read about Tiarra's more recent accomplishments, click HERE, HERE, HERE, and HERE.


Pine Ridge, South Dakota


Tiarra Little is a junior at Red Cloud Indian School. A student-athlete in three sports, Tiara is known not only for her skills on the court and golf course, but also for her determination in the classroom, where she is currently ranked first amongst her classmates for accumulative grade point average. Last year, Tiarra was nominated to take part in Building Bridges for Peace, part of Seeking Common Ground’s cultural exchange program. The program brought Tiara to the Middle East for a two-week eye-opening experience.

Asked and Answered

What was it like going to a whole different country?

It was amazing. When we first got there, I was a little hesitant and scared about what to expect but after each day went by, it became more and more fascinating. It was like being in a whole different world.

What types of things did you do once you got to there?

We were able to visit the towns and communities. We got to see a lot of spiritual sites, schools and meet with different groups and people from the country. Some were fighting for what they believed in while others were fighting for peace. The main purpose of the trip what to learn about their conflict and to learn more about conflict resolution.

How many students attended from South Dakota?

Kiley Weston and I attended from Red Cloud. Three students from Stevens High School in Rapid City also went, as well as a girl from Denver. We made an amazing amount of friends from the Middle East who were very welcoming and helpful in introducing us to their land.

What did you like about the trip to the Middle East?

The experience seeing a different country and being introduced to different people, cultures and sites. It was also great to know that there are people all across the world engaging in discussions about the need for peace.

What did you find different about the people of the Middle East?

Certainly there was a difference between religious people and non-religious people. Arab women cover their heads if they are religious. Jewish men wear yamacas and have curly sideburns but secular Jewish men don’t wear any clothing that identifies them as religious. There were a lot of differences in the people—ways that they identify themselves and their culture or religious beliefs. It reminded me of the symbols that identify my Lakota culture.

What types of things did you learn from the trip?

I learn a lot about how conflict can break down people and entire cultures. And, I learned how we can work to resolve those conflicts…through little things that we do on a daily basis: the way we treat one another, and respect one another. Overall, the trip made me feel really proud that I come from where I do because we have many freedoms that they don’t. We have the freedom of religion and we have the freedom to voice our opinion. We don’t have a major conflict between religions, even if we do have a lot of people who disagree with each other’s personal beliefs. We may grow up around poverty, but we don’t have it as hard as the people of the Middle East do.

 To read about Tiarra's more recent accomplishments, click HERE, HERE, HERE, and HERE.

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