Owasso Welcomes Collinsville Pre-Engineering Students


ADVANCED LEARNING: Tulsa Tech’s Principles of Engineering class at Owasso High School recently opened enrollment to students from Collinsville. Sarah Shiever, a Collinsville student, studies with Tuff Hodge, an Owasso senior, in Tulsa Tech’s Pre-Engineering class.

Courtesy Tulsa Tech

Although most students are a bit nervous when they enter high school, a group of Collinsville freshmen have chosen to make their transition even a bit more adventurous. Eight students including four boys and four girls have enrolled in Principles of Engineering at Owasso High School, which is a course available to high school students through Tulsa Tech’s Pre-Engineering program.

This unique opportunity came as a result of tremendous cooperation and flexibility between both Collinsville and Owasso Public Schools.

A couple of weeks before the school year began, Owasso High School found itself with a few open spots in Tulsa Tech’s Pre-Engineering program and decided to explore the possibility of offering the course to neighboring Collinsville High School students. The immediate reaction was positive and word about the award-winning program traveled quickly.

“We spoke first with the assistant superintendent and other administrators, and discussed how to make it happen,” recalls Mark Bird, assistant director for the Pre-Engineering Academy Off-Campus Programs and Sand Springs Campus. “Collinsville administrators thought it would be really great for some of their students to have an opportunity like this, and they were willing to work with us to get their students here.”

This new opportunity requires that Collinsville students leave from their lunch period 10 minutes early and travel by bus to Owasso High School. At the end of class the students are once again dismissed early in order to get back to Collinsville in time for their next class.

School has only been in session a few weeks, but Tulsa Tech’s Pre-Engineering instructor Leon Hadley says they’re off to a great start.

“Right now we’re talking about the design process,” reports Hadley. “After several weeks, students begin working with the computer and drawings. Right now we’re talking about measurements, how to use different tools for measuring, including calipers and freehand sketches.”

Only students with a B or higher in Algebra 1 were eligible for consideration for the program and students who continue in the program will have one more year of pre-engineering classes at Owasso High School before transitioning to another Tulsa Tech campus for their junior and senior year.

Collinsville Pre-Engineering freshman Sarah Shiever says though she doesn’t know what she wants to be when she grows up, this gives her a great start. “I didn’t know what to expect but it’s been great so far,” Shiever says. “It’s a little too early for me to tell exactly what kind of engineering I might like, but I am really learning a lot and like it very much.”

Collinsville principal Jon Coleman admires how the eight students stepped outside their comfort zone to take advantage of the opportunity. “Regardless of whether they continue in the program, they have probably saved their parents money in the long run,” remarks Coleman. “Figuring out what you don’t like is just as important as knowing what you do like.”

Hadley says, he encourages his students not to limit their imaginations about what they can do with their lives.

“I try to give them exposure to the wide span of the engineering field,” says Hadley. “I tell them that 50 percent of them will have a career in something that doesn’t even exist right now.”

If you’re currently looking for exciting career training offered free to qualified high school students with affordable tuition for adults, Tulsa Tech invites you to visit today. For more information, please call (918) 828-5200 or visit www.tulsatech.edu.

Updated 10-19-2010

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