Tulsa Tech’s New Leader Kara Gae Neal Shares Her Goals

NEW LOOK: Tulsa Technology Center’s new superintendent, Dr. Kara Gae Neal, spoke at the Tulsa Press Club after the Tulsa Tech reunion on Friday, Aug. 1. She is showing the audience the career school’s new logo. She also revealed the Share Point Web site for the district.

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Tulsa Technology Center’s new superintendent, Dr. Kara Gae Neal talked about her plans for the school at the Page One Luncheon Fri., Aug. 1 at the Tulsa Press Club. Neal started her tenure at Tulsa Tech July 1 after the retirement of Dr. Gene Callahan. She shared her goals for the district at the luncheon.

Her first goal is to solidify Tulsa Tech’s image in order to clear up any misconceptions the public may have about what the school does. She revealed the Share Point Web site and the new logo. Neal wants Tulsan’s to know that the center is a viable option for success in the marketplace. The technical college prepares its graduates for careers that are often overlooked but are vitally important to many industries. The support positions industries rely on are an important part of the industry as a whole.

In 2007 the center had more than 3,000 full-time students as well as about 69,000 adults in its occupational training programs. Tulsa Tech is continuing its efforts to serve the community to an even greater extent.

Construction is continuing on a 179,000-square-foot Health Careers Center at 34th Street and Memorial Drive, and the Broken Arrow Campus for Transportation and Manufacturing is undergoing a 250,000-square-foot expansion. The system is well funded, works to meet both local and state work-force needs and isn’t overly regulated. Neal considers Tulsa Tech to be on the cutting edge with great teachers working hand-in-hand with industry.

Tulsa Tech was founded in 1965 as part of Tulsa Public Schools with the purchase of a single campus, now called the Lemley Campus, from TPS. It became an independent school district in 1973 and is now the oldest and largest technology center in Oklahoma’s Career Tech System. In 1992, the school’s name was changed from Tulsa Vo-Tech to better identify and promote the type of career-focused training provided at the school’s growing number of campuses. Now Tulsa Tech offers modern campuses with a new Owasso campus in the works. Construction continues to expand the Lemley Complex and Broken Arrow Campus, as part of a 10-year master plan to upgrade facilities. Technology continues to play an increasing role in the development and delivery of Tulsa Tech programs and services and future plans include innovative virtual classrooms and additional on-line instruction and services. Neal is a career educator, having been superintendent of the Metro Tech Vocational-Technical Centers in Oklahoma City, Glenpool Public Schools and Tulsa County schools. Tulsa Tech serves high school and adult students in Tulsa County, an area with which Neal is well acquainted. From 1987 to 1993, she was Tulsa County’s elected superintendent of schools. Her passion is helping students come to love learning and she thinks Tulsa County public education is ahead of the rest of Oklahoma because the educators talk with each other.

Updated 08-23-2008

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