McAlester GEAR UP seniors tour the University of Oklahoma


WILBURTON, OK (May 5, 2017) – Seven McAlester GEAR UP students recently traveled to Norman to tour The University of Oklahoma. The tour started in Jacobson Hall where Graduate Assistant Hunter Guarnera provided an overview about OU highlighting national achievement and what really makes OU stand out among other schools.

Every state in the nation and 120 other countries have student representation on campus. OU promotes study abroad opportunities in 80 countries and over 200 cities. The University of Oklahoma is one of the largest in the state with over 20,000 undergraduate students, yet they are able to keep class sizes down to an average of 32 students and have an 18:1 student to faculty ratio—excellent for any nationally-ranked university. Students were excited to learn about the 170+ degree programs it can offer as well as OU campuses around the world in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Puebla, Mexico; and Arezzo, Italy where students can attend OU and live in another country.

After the presentation, students were led through campus by Hailey Lawrence, an undergrad from Dallas, TX, double majoring in Chemistry and Biochemistry. After walking around the North Oval, students were given an inside look at the Bizzell Memorial Library where there are over 2 million printed books for student use. There are multiple computer labs featuring Apple and PC computers for students on campus, as well as support staff available for research questions. The library has many unique spots but an important study tip most students on campus know about is how the noise levels increase as you move up the five floors. The bottom floor is open to conversation but the top floor is a silent area.

MHS students also got a glimpse of the Innovation at the Edge inside the Bizzell Memorial Library. Innovation at the Edge is a flexible experimentation and innovation space that provides access to the latest tools used in research, instruction and knowledge creation, including 3D printing tools, custom virtual reality workstations, software and data skill development and microelectronics kits. Any member of the OU community, from any field, is free to prototype concepts or fly-through 3D data sets in this centrally-located makerspace. MHS students were impressed by the display of items printed by the 3-D printer.

The tour led students inside Gaylord Hall where the Gaylord College of Journalism and Mass Communication is located. Lawrence showcased the media rooms where “OU Nightly”–a student run nightly news show is produced and recorded. Many OU students who want to pursue broadcasting start at the “OU Nightly” and move on to local and national news stations. Students quickly went through the Price College of Business where they saw merchandise and other random items that business students have created during Integrated Business Core, a 12-hour course where students create a business themselves.

The last stop on the tour took students through the Oklahoma Memorial Union, or the “Student Union.” The Oklahoma Memorial Union is the heart of the University of Oklahoma campus and a perfect location for conferences, meetings, formal events and more. It features eight eateries for students, faculty, staff and visitors. These include a 24-hour diner, a Starbucks and the University Club. MHS students stopped for a photo with the famous “Sooner Schooner” before the tour ended for the day.

“The University of Oklahoma has so many great program options for students to choose and a gorgeous campus! I believe any student could find a major to pursue their goals at OU.”

The field trip was sponsored by Eastern Oklahoma State College GEAR UP. Participating schools take two field trips each academic year—one to tour a college or university and one that is cultural/educational in nature.

MHS students stop for a recreation moment outside of the Adams Towers. Pictured are Chris Dungan, Shaun Dickey, Dakota Mick and Miles Rolan.

MHS students stop to see the 3-D printer and creations outside the Innovation Edge inside Bizzell Memorial Library. Students pictured are Shaun Dickey, Dakota Mick, Miles Rolan, Jazmyne Smith, Chris Dungan, Rashad Clark and Trumaine Johnson.

MHS students pose outside the Bizzell Memorial Library at OU. Dakota Mick, Miles Rolan, Shaun Dickey, Jazmyne Smith, Chris Dungan, Rashad Clark and Trumaine Johnson.

MHS students wait inside Jacobson Hall for an overview of OU and programs/majors offered. Students pictured are Dakota Mick, Miles Rolan, Rashad Clark, Trumaine Johnson, Jazmyne Smith, Chris Dungan and Shaun Dickey.

MHS senior Miles Rolan plans to join the Army upon graduation.

MHS GEAR UP senior Rashad Clark checks out the display inside Price Hall where OU business students have created businesses and merchandise to sell for charity.

MHS senior Jazmyne Smith poses with the bust of Michael F. Price in the College of Business building, Price Hall.

MHS students pose with the Sooner Schooner inside the Oklahoma Memorial Union. Pictured are: Front row: Trumaine Johnson and Jazmyne Smith Back row: Rashad Clark, Miles Rolan, Dakota Mick, Chris Dungan and Shaun Dickey.

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