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student stories

Published: Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Community Elders Share Valuable Insight in Black Wall Street History Class

The Ellis Walker Woods Memorial honors the first principal of Tulsa's Booker T. Washington High School.

Black Wall Street History course instructor Quraysh Ali Lansana.

When Oklahoma State University-Tulsa’s Black Wall Street History course launched in August, instructor Quraysh Ali Lansana didn’t anticipate the majority of his students would have a direct connection to that history.

Published: Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Building a foundation for the future

Even while employed full-time, raising her daughters and working through a language barrier, Bessy Valera accomplished her goal to earn a bachelor's degree.

Earning a bachelor’s degree can be challenging for any student. But Bessy Valera faced more hurdles than most.

“Growing up in Peru, my mother made sure I knew the importance of education,” said Valera, a recent Oklahoma State University-Tulsa graduate. “Unfortunately, higher education in Peru was completely unaffordable.”

Valera moved to the United States in 1996. Despite the difficulties that came with a language barrier, she found a career and settled in.

Published: Monday, February 24, 2020

Research and outreach: OSU-Tulsa research turns into nationally recognized community policing plan

It's easy to catch Jesse Guardiola with a smile. His friendly, infectious personality takes over the room as soon as he enters it.

Before Jesse Guardiola was an OSU-Tulsa graduate, a Tulsa Police senior officer, and a winner of the Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service in Policing, he was a fresh Tulsa Police Department recruit who saw an issue and wanted to make a difference.

“Early on, I saw a divide between Tulsa’s Hispanic community and law enforcement,” Guardiola said.

Published: Wednesday, February 19, 2020

OSU-Tulsa Career Closet offers free suits and fresh confidence to students

OSU-Tulsa graduate and Career Closet user Bessy Valera models her go-to blue blouse.

Whether it’s a job interview, a networking event, an internship or anything in-between, it’s important to stand out – for the right reasons. Professional events usually require professional attire. But what if your closet is more casual than business?

That’s where Bessy Valera found herself last fall, as she prepared for a scholarship banquet in her final semester.

Published: Monday, November 25, 2019

Once imprisoned, an OSU-Tulsa graduate takes on Oklahoma’s female incarceration problem

D'Marria Monday (right) and fellow OSU-Tulsa student Jacquelyn Jackson in 2017 -- one year before she would graduate and form Block Builderz.
Statewide activist and public speaker D'Marria Monday poses for a photo in Tulsa's historic Greenwood District.
 
D’Marria Monday isn’t content to hang out in the shadow of her famous uncle – OSU legend and Olympic gold medalist wrestler Kenny Monday.
 
“I want to create my own legacy. But having the footsteps of greatness behind me inspires me,” she says.
 
Published: Thursday, September 5, 2019

Family, community ties draw student back home to OSU-Tulsa

Tyreiha Walker inside Wanda J's Next Generation

Tyreiha Walker

 

Just as her four sisters have done, Tyreiha Walker grew up working in her Granny’s well-known Wanda J’s restaurants in north Tulsa.

She started at cash register at age 7, progressed to doing dishes then became a waitress by 14.

Walker now spends time at the family’s newest location, Wanda J’s Next Generation, on Greenwood Avenue across from ONEOK Field.

Published: Thursday, August 29, 2019

Learning to Lead

Members of the 2018-19 OSU-Tulsa President’s Leadership Society have made long-lasting friendships outside of group activities.

OSU-Tulsa President's Leadership Society

OSU-Tulsa President’s Leadership Society surpasses expectations

When Dr. Raj Basu first created a prestigious group to help high-achieving students at Oklahoma State University-Tulsa develop leadership skills, he wasn’t certain how much participation he might find.

Basu was pleasantly surprised when the President’s Leadership Society doubled in size to nearly 80 members in its second year.

Published: Monday, June 24, 2019

Outstanding Senior on path to lifting voices of women, marginalized communities in film

Amairani Perez Chamu

 

The way things are going, it won’t be long before Amairani Perez Chamu’s name appears as director in the credits of a feature film.

She is focused on achieving her goal of making movies that matter, that help lift the voices of women, Latino and marginalized communities so they will be heard.

Published: Wednesday, March 27, 2019

OSU-Tulsa student receives top honors from the OSU Alumni Association

Amairani Perez Chamu

Amairani Perez Chamu

OSU-Tulsa student Amairani Perez Chamu has been named a 2018-19 OSU Outstanding Senior, the highest student honor bestowed by the Oklahoma State University Alumni Association.

Published: Wednesday, March 27, 2019

OSU-Tulsa engineering student says research enhances learning experience

OSU-Tulsa student Saqib Raza in the lab

As a child in Pakistan, Saqib Raza was known by his family for taking apart remote controlled toys and various household appliances to see how they work.

The problem was he never put them back together.

“That’s why I don’t have any toys from my childhood,” he says with a chuckle.

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