Oklahoma State University
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Oklahoma State University: An inclusive experience that prepares students for success

The key to a successful study abroad experience is choosing a university that not only welcomes students, both international and local, but also provides the right tools to thrive after graduating. Oklahoma State University does just that. 

Since its inception in 1890, Oklahoma State University has continued to uphold its land-grant mission to make college education more accessible. Located in Stillwater, 60 miles from both Oklahoma City and Tulsa, it has 35,000 students who come from all 50 states and over 100 countries. The university boasts over 70 diversity-related student, faculty and staff organisations and was named one of the top schools in the western region by The Princeton Review in 2021. This is just one of its many accolades. 

College Affordability Guide named Oklahoma State University the number one most affordable college in Oklahoma in 2021. It has been featured 15 times in Kiplinger’s Personal Finance College Value list since 2000. As tuition and fees are 69% of the national average for land-grant universities and cost of attendance is 78% of the national average, affordability is certainly one of the main reasons students flock to this campus. 

Oklahoma State University

Breaking Barriers: Oklahoma State University Embraces Diversity and Inclusion for International Students Source: Oklahoma State University

New students are given a warm reception, encouraged to join events such as the Welcome Week programming. There are also numerous organisations that help international students feel more at home. “I have students who are active in the Bangladesh Student Association and OSU chapter of the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers,” says assistant professor in Civil and Environmental Engineering, Jaime Schussler. “These organisations, and others like them, provide an opportunity for international students to connect with others from similar cultural backgrounds to create a support network. As a professor, I really appreciate my international students bringing their backgrounds and experiences to provide additional perspectives to engineering problems.”

Cultural exchange gives students a better understanding of the world, and Oklahoma State University ensures that people from diverse backgrounds have the opportunity to share their own traditions as well as learn about others. “Many are involved in international student organisations and government associations,” assistant professor in Civil and Environmental Engineering, Mary Foltz says. “They host cultural events which many folks in the community attend to support our international student body. For example, students have invited me and my family to attend the International Bazaar and the Global Talent show, which had international cuisine and dance the students showcased for our community.”

Other faculty members see the benefit of having the International Bazaar. “It was a great opportunity to celebrate all the cultures represented on campus through food, art, and dress,” Schussler says. “This event had representation from around the globe and served international and domestic students. After all, we have so much to learn from one another.”

As Oklahoma State University is steeped in tradition, students have the chance to immerse themselves in its culture. They will learn many charming rituals and inside jokes that unite the Cowboy family, such as wearing America’s Brightest Orange on Fridays.

Some international students who have language struggles are given additional support where needed. Foltz has flexible teaching approaches for students for whom English is their second language. “For example, students are permitted a notes sheet for exams, and I allow them to be written in a combination of English and the student’s first language,” she says. “Further, all students, international and domestic, are open to ask questions freely during exams. Many international students use this opportunity to get further clarification on vocabulary in problem statements.”

Oklahoma State University’s programmes are created to give the students the best chance of landing their dream jobs after graduating. Outside of career fairs, talks by alumni, and helpful career services portal, it offers a dynamic learning experience geared towards impressing future employers with relevant experience. Schussler highlights that the engineering students have “unique hands-on and project-based learning opportunities” as well as research opportunities. “Additionally, we have strong industry ties so that our students are familiar with companies, contacts, and areas of work that they could get involved in post-grad,” she adds. 

Hailing from Mexico City, Jorge Gonzalez Estrella was attracted to the potential opportunities at the university for both students and faculty. He is currently an assistant professor in the Civil & Environmental Engineering department. “I chose OSU because it is an ideal university to establish a research group,” he says. “At OSU, we have ample opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration, state-of-the-art facilities and research centres, and plenty of opportunities for professional growth.” 

To kickstart your study abroad journey at Oklahoma State University, click here to apply now. To get updates about the programme, join the school’s LinkedIn group.

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