State Regents recognize partnership between Eastern and AT&T Oklahoma
WILBURTON, OK (March 11, 2015) – Twenty-seven business and higher education partnerships throughout the state were recently recognized as innovative collaborations that further the education of Oklahoma’s workforce. The unique partnership between Eastern Oklahoma State College and AT&T Oklahoma was recognized at the event.
The Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education’s Regents Business Partnership Excellence Award is designed to highlight successful partnerships between higher education institutions and businesses and to further cultivate the higher learning environment through State Regents’ Economic Development Grants.
Eastern’s and AT&T Oklahoma’s partnership benefits the greater Latimer and Pittsburg counties. The partnership began when AT&T was seeking a location to place a new tower in order to bring 4G LTE service to the area. At the same time, Eastern was in search of a tower to place its 25,000-watt radio station. To meet both their needs, AT&T entered into an agreement with Eastern to build a 350-foot tower on the Wilburton campus in order to provide 4G service. With the addition of the tower, Eastern was able to launch Mountaineer Radio KWLB 93.1 FM in January.
“The radio station integrates perfectly into Eastern’s mass communication program in radio broadcasting as well as providing non-stop marketing for the college within a 60-mile radius of the campus,” said Eastern President Dr. Stephen E. Smith. “A long-term agreement is in place that will allow both services to be provided to the area for years to come.”
Institutions involved in these partnerships provide $500 for tuition waivers to employees of the partnering businesses; internships that enable current students to work at the partnering businesses; faculty externships with the partnering businesses; and/or enhancement of the partnerships with additional equipment, materials or supplies. The State Regents provide a $500 match to the waivers.
“Oklahoma’s colleges and universities drive economic advancement, collaborating with business and industry partners to link academic programs directly to employment needs in high-demand areas,” said Chancellor Glen D. Johnson. “Through these partnerships, students engage in hands-on career-related experiences and are better prepared for the workforce.”
Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb (far left) joins Eastern Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Janet Wansick, AT&T Oklahoma President Steve Hahn, Eastern President Dr. Stephen E. Smith, and OSRHE Chancellor Glen D. Johnson at a recent event to recognize successful partnerships between higher education institutions and businesses.