Oklahoma recognized as “national model” in degree completion efforts
Gov. Mary Fallin announced a new higher education initiative to increase the number of degrees awarded annually from 30,500 to 50,900 over the next 12 years. Addressing members of her cabinet, higher education officials and others last week at the University of Central Oklahoma, the governor provided details of an approach that is already being hailed as a “national model” by Complete College America (CCA).
“My top priority as governor is to create a business environment in Oklahoma that fosters economic growth and job creation. Ensuring we have a highly skilled, college educated workforce is essential to attracting and retaining good jobs and investment to our state,” Fallin said in a press release.
More and more jobs in the knowledge-based economy will be available to those with college degrees. In fact, current projections show new net job growth by 2018 in Oklahoma will create 87,000 jobs for college graduates. That’s compared to only 42,000 jobs for high school graduates and 17,000 jobs for high school dropouts.
The initiative includes a statewide redesign of remedial and developmental education programs; a plan to reduce remediation in the transition from high school to college; continued support to Reach Higher, Oklahoma’s adult degree completion program; and revisions to the Brain Gain Performance Funding program, a state regents initiative to increase the number of Oklahomans with an associate or bachelor’s degree.
For more information on the initiative and CCA, click here.
Career Access College Readiness program seeks volunteers
The Tulsa Metro Chamber supports the goal of increasing the number of college graduates in Tulsa County through its Career Access College Readiness (CACR) program.
The Career Access College Readiness (CACR) program needs coaches for the 2011-2012 school year.
The CACR program builds upon the Chamber's existing education initiatives, Partners In Education and Oklahoma Scholars, further helping students prepare for college upon graduation. The program provides coaches to students to help them understand the countless college and workforce options available to them after high school graduation. CACR is a partnership among the Chamber, the University of Oklahoma - Tulsa Community Engagement Center and Tulsa Public Schools.
Through the program, volunteer coaches from the local business community are matched with small groups of students to help them learn about and plan for college through a variety of subjects, including how to apply for college, how to acquire funding for college and knowing which courses to take.
CACR Training Dates
Sept. 27 or 28, 2011
4:30 to 7 p.m.
OU-Tulsa Learning Center room 145
To sign up to volunteer, contact Heather Johnson at firstname.lastname@example.org or 918-560-0218 or email Pamela S. Pittman at email@example.com.
Potential coaches can learn more about the CACR program by accessing information on the Tulsa Metro Chamber website.
Proposed changes to the city charter on Nov. 8 ballot
Tulsa Metro Chamber opposes proposed ballot changes to the Tulsa city charter appearing on the November general election ballot.
The chamber specifically opposes the City Council's proposal for a city manager structure and the Save Our Tulsa (SOT) proposal to add three at-large councilors. The chamber argues placing the mayor on the council seemingly alters the checks and balances of the legislative body.
“The city charter ballot proposals to date have proceeded at a pace that has not allowed sufficient broad-based input,” said Mike Neal. “Constituents were not afforded an opportunity to engage in the dialogue and formation of the proposals.”
Altering the city charter requires deliberative study and debate from all nine city council districts in Tulsa. Continued discussion on challenges and solutions to move the city forward should be a community-wide process ensuring inclusivity and diversity of constituents, and if necessary, developing a timely and broad-based proposal.
“We ask our member companies to educate employees on the city charter proposals and encourage those employees to vote in the November general election,” said Neal.
To learn more about the first proposal on the ballot, click here to view a synopsis from the Tulsa World.
Voter registration deadline October 14
The General Election for the city of Tulsa will be held Tuesday, Nov. 8. The final day to register to vote in the general election is Friday, Oct. 14. The Tulsa Metro Chamber is currently organizing voter registration drives. Time and location of the voter registration drives will be forthcoming.
“This election is quite possibly the most significant in the city of Tulsa in recent years and one that will impact the direction of the city for many more," said Mike Neal, president and CEO, Tulsa Metro Chamber.
The following council seats will be decided in the general election: Districts 2, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8 and 9. Two council districts seats have already been chosen. Jack Henderson won the seat in District 1 and Karen Gilbert won in District 5. Both claimed primary victories and had no opponent from the opposing party in the general election.
The voter ID law approved by Oklahomans last year requires all voters to provide identification from the federal or state government, or from a tribal government. The identification must include the voter's name, picture and an expiration date after the date of the election. Voters may also use their voter identification card or a temporary voter identification document issued by the Election Board.
For more information about how and where to register to vote, visit the Tulsa County Election Board office located at 555 N. Denver Ave. or call the Tulsa County Election Board office at 918.596.5787.
Oklahoma to join Early Learning Challenge grant contest; Tulsa Metro Chamber supports application
Gov. Mary Fallin and Superintendent of Public Instruction Janet Barresi announced last week Oklahoma will submit an application tailored to Oklahoma’s unique strengths as a leader in early childhood education to the Race to the Top – Early Learning Challenge (RTT-ELC) program. RTT-ELC is a $500 million state-level grant competition aimed at improving early childhood education. Under RTT-ELC, participating states submit a detailed application to the United States Department of Education, outlining their plans to improve upon early childhood education. Should Oklahoma be chosen as a winner, the state would be eligible for a grant of up to $60 million.
of Public Instruction
The Chamber issued a letter in support of the state applying for the grant. In the letter, the Chamber stressed that early childhood development and education are correlated with greater economic returns. Investing in the lives of Tulsa’s children results in better schools and eventually a better educated workforce.
Tulsa continues to lead the nation in developing early childhood learning programs for infants and toddlers and has been a top research resource for continuing national research. The grant would enable the Tulsa community to continue and expand its award winning early childhood education work.
“My number one priority as governor is to make Oklahoma a more prosperous state with more good, high paying jobs,” Fallin said. “In the long term, nothing is more important to achieving that goal than having quality educational institutions, high student achievement and a highly skilled workforce.”
Barresi said that investing in early childhood education would ultimately pay big dividends for the state.
For more information, click here.
Tulsa Metro Chamber wins big with economic development awards
Jim Fram, senior vice president for economic development for the Tulsa Metro Chamber, was awarded Fellow Member status by the International Economic Development Council for attaining unusual stature in the field of economic development and closely related disciplines.
The honor was presented at an awards ceremony during the IEDC Annual Conference, Sept. 18-21, in Charlotte, N.C. At the conference, The Tulsa Metro Chamber also was honored with other awards for its economic development efforts.
Click here to read more.
Tulsa on top 20 metros list during recovery
Tulsa is among the 20 strongest-performing metros based on its economic performance during their recovery from the recession, according to a recent report by the Metropolitan Policy Program at the Brookings Institution.
The September MetroMonitor, which analyzed data through the second quarter, is part of a series of reports that track the recession and recovery in the nation's 100 largest metros. The national report indicates that the recovery in the second quarter continued to be uneven among the nation's largest metro areas.
VisitTulsa staff hosts travel writers to promote Tulsa across U.S.
The VisitTulsa staff hosted a group of eight travel writers last week from publications across the United States in an effort to help promote the region as a visitor’s destination and enhance its reputation as a fun getaway for all ages.
The group visited a number of Tulsa locations to represent the wide range of interesting travel options, including museums, restaurants and cultural destinations.
After the writers completed their visit in Tulsa, the group traveled to Oklahoma City for the Travel Media Showcase convention, where VisitTulsa staff continued promoting the Tulsa region. Staff participated in one-on-one appointments, multiple meet and greet opportunities and networked with over 200 media outlets to garner print and broadcast media coverage that will result in positive media impressions with a wide range of audiences across the U.S. and bring visitors to the Tulsa region.
For more information on the VisitTulsa staff and their initiatives, go to www.VisitTulsa.com.
This week's top prioritiesExecutive Office
Attending the US Chamber of Commerce, Committee of 100, Fall Meeting
Attending the Foundation for Tulsa Public Schools board annual meeting
Hosting the Chamber’s Executive Committee meeting
Communications and Marketing
Intercity Visit planning
Chamber golf classic planning
Membership campaign planning
Community Development staff is attending International Downtown Association annual conference in Charlotte, NC
Community Development staff is joining the Director of the Sports Commission and CVB on a site visit to Ashville and Greenville, NC
Participating in the first Governor's UAS Council meeting in OKC on September 27
Hosting a site visit for a local company (Business Retention Expansion)
Follow up on this week’s site visit
Education and Workforce
Partners in Education October 18 Forum with Partner of the Year Williams
Oklahoma Workforce Investment Board retreat
Career Tech recruiting and training
Welcoming Kian Kamas to the Chamber's Government Affairs team
Attending the State Legislature's Task Force on Tax Credits and Economic Incentives
Attending the State Legislature's Joint Committee on Immigration
Small Business Forum focused on HR issues
Working with Small Business council on Annual retreat
Meeting regarding workforce attraction strategies
Tulsa Sports Commission
Following up on potential event leads from US Olympic Sports Link in Colorado Springs
Planning for Bill Connor’s Sports Dinner and TU Tailgates
Preparing marketing materials for TEAMS Conference in Las Vegas next week
Narrowing candidate organizations for 2012 community partner
Interviewing Chair-Elect position for 2012
Planning crew member of the year party
Vietnam Veterans of America site visit
USS Skagit, Naval Support Activity DaNang, and Auxiliary Submarine Rescue site visit
Attending Small Market Meetings – Little Rock, Arkansas
Chamber welcomes new businessesEach month the Tulsa Metro Chamber's Hospitality Club welcomes new businesses and new Chamber members to the community by assisting with ribbon cuttings and groundbreaking announcements.
Ann's Cleaners and Laundry
Arthritis Foundation - Eastern Oklahoma Chapter
Bruce Riggs Sales Elite Coaching
Eagle Energy Production, LLC
Hilton Garden Inn Tulsa Midtown
MyHealth Access Network
Winn Family Practice
Shari Romer, owner
9999 S. Mingo Rd., Suite P
Tulsa, OK 74133
Phone: 918.369.HAIR (4247)