The University of Oklahoma exists “for the benefit of the Citizen and the State.” OU believes that higher education is hard work as represented by a farmer sowing fields. “It takes hard work to plow a field, sow it with seeds, tend the plants, and harvest the crops. It also takes hard work to learn new things, like a new language, or a new way of looking at the world, but the work yields tremendous, life-sustaining benefits.”
Located south of Oklahoma City, in the 3rd largest city in the state, Norman is home to one of the friendliest student bodies I’ve encountered. Students greeted guests with “Boomer – Sooner” and responded to my questions. OU is a doctoral degree, space-grant, research university serving the educational, cultural, economic and health-care needs of the state, region and nation. Student interested in health science, the OU Health Sciences Center is one of only four comprehensive academic health centers in the nation with seven professional colleges.
OU accepts 80% of their applicants using a holistic admissions process which factors in academics with service and potential. Sheppard McConnell, an Admissions Director, emphasizes OU’s demonstrated academic achievement which includes core GPA, rigorous high school courses, and standardized tests. They may also consider an essay, school and community activities, leadership positions and awards, and participation in athletics and work experience, summer activities and special circumstances. While an essay will improve a borderline application (remember they accept 80%), OU values a campus visit more.
On average, the 22,000 undergrads entered OU with above average grades: 3.59 GPA, 1060-1340 SAT (CR/M), and a 23-29 ACT. Even with a high acceptance rate, students stay (84% retention) and graduate (32% 4-year, 63% 6-year) which is above the national rates. OU ranks No. 1 in the nation among all public institutions with more than 750 National Merit Scholars!
The standout majors include Native American Studies, Geographic Information Science, Petroleum Geology, Musical Theater, Dance, and Advertising. The School of Meteorology (NOAH) is #1 in the nation for severe storm and mesoscale research. As an Entrepreneurship major, you’ll create a real business plan, product, and profit. At the end of the semester you donate to a real charity! It’s about learning to get (earn money) and give (be charitable). It is one of the few colleges that offer bachelor’s degrees in Air Traffic Management or Professional Pilot. But you better excel at calculus and physics if you want to become a pilot!
And since each major concludes with a Senior Capstone Experience, you will be able to share a culmination of what you’ve learned.
OU provides fully furnished residence halls with various bed/bath combinations, computer labs, free tutoring, and laundry facilities. Their meal plan includes dining at the Couch Restaurants, home to the world’s only all-you-care-to-eat Chick-Fil-A. (Road trip!) Along with the 400+ organizations and 40 club sports, you can enjoy Big 12 athletics, NBA basketball, Native American history, and many museums.
One reason OU attracts and admits students who are actively volunteering in their community, is so that they can continue serving. OU offers Camp Crimson (new student camp), OU Cousins (to connect and develop unity between U.S., International, and exchange students), and Big Event (OU's Official Day of Community Service where 5,500 students serve the Greater OKC area).
The University of Oklahoma is an affordable school. The resident cost of attendance (COA) is $19,000; non-resident COA is $32,000. And if you are a National Merit Scholarship finalist who names OU as their first choice on their NMS application, you are guaranteed $66,000 (resident) and $120,000 (non-resident) for four years. The average debt upon graduation is $22,140.
To succeed at Oklahoma, you’ll need to read, take notes, and read. They value the written word! So if you want to join alumni like Blake Griffin, DeMarco Murray, Helen Walton, and Fred Haise (Apollo 13 astronaut) then plan to visit soon. With a high acceptance rate and above average graduation rate, OU is perfect fit for students who want to major in meteorology, dance, entrepreneurship, or Native American studies. At OU, you will not only learn, you will learn to give.
Through student ministry and educational consulting (career and college planning), I have enjoyed guiding teenagers to discover their higher calling.