Story of the Week: Alaskan Teen Uses Facebook and YouTube to ‘Make Yup’ik Cool Again’


Byron Nicholai lives in a small village in rural Alaska. He’s a high school senior. He also has more than 24,000 followers on Facebook, is a hit on YouTube, is one of the Obama administration’s Arctic Youth Ambassadors, and was in a documentary that premiered at Sundance this year.

Nicholai has found success melding the modern and traditional to reach other kids, and is the subject of this week’s Finding America story of the week. Nicholai celebrates his native identity by writing and performing songs in Yup’ik on his Facebook page.

Listen for more from Nicholai here and check out Frontier of Change on Facebook:

Frontier of Change is a project from KNBA and lead producers Isaac Kestenbaum and Josie Holtzman that will bring the voices and stories of Alaska’s changing climate to the streets and airwaves of Anchorage.