Published 10/25/2019 | Reading Time 3 min 50 sec
TULSA, Okla. — While Oklahoma ranks third in the nation for student transfers to four-year institutions, our state performs below average on those transfer students completing a bachelor’s degree. To help address this gap, Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum has declared the third week of October as Tulsa Transfer Week and a new report, released during the inaugural Tulsa Transfer Week, assesses the current transfer situation in northeast Oklahoma and outlines next steps to improve the process for students.
The report is part of the on-going collaborative work with Tulsa Community College and regional partners – Langston University, Northeastern State University, Oklahoma State University-Tulsa, Rogers State University, The University of Tulsa, and University of Oklahoma-Tulsa.
“As the state of Oklahoma’s top provider of transfer students, we have a responsibility to ensure our students who intend to transfer are given a clear pathway from application to graduation, and on to their transfer institution, and that they are prepared to succeed when they arrive,” said TCC President & CEO Leigh B. Goodson, Ph.D.
The Tulsa Regional College Transfer Report summarizes the accomplishments of each participating institution in the first year of the project funded by the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation and through work with the John N. Gardner Institute for Excellence in Undergraduate Education.
The three goals of the Tulsa Transfer Project are to increase the transfer rate of TCC students to four-year institutions, increase the percentage of transfer credits accepted toward majors at those four-year institutions, and increase rates of bachelor’s completion.
“We know an individual’s earning potential significantly increases with a bachelor’s degree—by nearly $20,000 annually compared to those with just a high school diploma, according to Census data on median earnings in Tulsa County. In supporting this collaborative work, we are increasing the likelihood that TCC students will have clear transfer pathways to the regional universities participating in this project, which will lead to higher rates of bachelor’s degree completion, a stronger workforce, and regional economic growth,” said Michael DuPont, Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation Program Officer.
Nationally, transfer students lose an average of 13 credit hours from a community college to a four-year university, according to the U.S. Government Accountability Office. By saving students time and money, producing more individuals with a bachelor’s degree, and having them stay in the region, this work is important to the economic growth of northeast Oklahoma and the state.
The Tulsa Regional College Transfer Report outlines 2019-2020 priorities for each of the seven higher education institutions participating in this collaborative effort as they seek to collectively improve the way they serve transfer students in the region.
“Langston University is excited to participate in the Tulsa Transfer Project and inaugural Tulsa Transfer Week. We applaud the efforts of Mayor G.T. Bynum, the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation, John N. Gardner Institute for Excellence in Undergraduate Education, Dr. Leigh Goodson, Tulsa Community College, and other partner institutions for this unique collaboration. Langston University is committed to ensuring that transfer students attain a bachelor’s degree and that citizens in the great state of Oklahoma are provided an opportunity to obtain an affordable, quality education in the higher education realm. We are fortunate that creative initiatives like this will open the doors of opportunity for transfer students. We will continue doing our part to ensure their success.” –Dr. Kent J. Smith, Jr., Langston University President
“Northeastern State University is a proud and long-standing education partner with the citizens of Tulsa and TCC and we are pleased to be part of the Tulsa Transfer Collaborative. Our “Blue to Green” transfer agreements make it easy and seamless for TCC students to successfully transfer to NSU. This initiative is transformative for students across the region and is worthy of celebration.” – Dr. Steve Turner, Northeastern State University President
“As most of OSU-Tulsa’s undergraduate students have transferred from another institution, we are thrilled to celebrate the inaugural Tulsa Transfer Week and the Tulsa Transfer Project’s focus on this important population. We are particularly proud of our Transfer Maps initiative with Tulsa Community College, which has made the transfer process between TCC and OSU more transparent and connected to a student’s career goals. We look forward to continuing our work to build access and pathways to certificates, bachelor’s and graduate degrees for Tulsans.” – Dr. Pamela Fry, Oklahoma State University-Tulsa President
“Rogers State University is committed to making college completion a priority. We are proud to partner with Tulsa Community College and our regional peer institutions in streamlining the process for transfer students to earn a bachelor’s degree. At RSU, we have more than 20 bachelor’s degree options that seamlessly integrate with Tulsa Community College associate degrees allowing students an efficient transition as they pursue their academic goals.” – Dr. Larry Rice, Rogers State University President
“We’re grateful for the opportunity to participate in the Tulsa Transfer Project and better support students who choose to continue their education at TU. A majority of our transfer students began their college careers at TCC, and this partnership has helped us identify ways TU faculty and staff can welcome those students to campus with the level of acceptance and encouragement they deserve.” – Gerard P. Clancy, M.D., The University of Tulsa President
“We are pleased to partner with Tulsa Community College and other local higher education institutions to work together to ensure that students in northeast Oklahoma can complete their bachelor’s degree. We are committed to working closely as part of the Tulsa Transfer Collaborative to increase opportunity for students to transfer to OU-Tulsa for bachelor’s degree completion and move on to master’s degrees as part of their educational experience. The work of the Tulsa Transfer Project is important to our community and the growth of our region.” – John Henning Schumann, M.D., University of Oklahoma- Tulsa