A View from the President's Office

(Pioneer Article dated July 23, 2007)

Everyone at OCCC is committed to helping each student succeed in college. We believe that a college education is the most significant investment you can make to ensure a better life for yourself and your family.

This focus on student success is not just a slogan at OCCC. We continually look at what we do inside and outside of the classroom that could help more students succeed. We measure success not only by the number of students who successfully complete college courses; we also measure it by how deeply each student learns the materials in the class.

Recently, we have decided to organize our efforts to help more students succeed around an initiative called, Achieving the Dream. This comprehensive initiative provides a focus to the many projects designed to improve student preparation for college, persistence of our students from semester to semester, right through the accomplishment of a degree or certificate.

Why the increased focus on student success? Simply put, too many students in Oklahoma dream of going to college and finishing a college degree and never see their dream fulfilled. Less than half of the students who initially enroll in college will ever complete a degree. Among the 50 states, Oklahoma ranks 42nd in the percentage of its residents (per capita) that hold a college degree. Jobs that only required a high-school diploma are declining, while jobs that require a college degree are increasing. A college education has never been more important.

OCCC is a place where everyone can have the opportunity to achieve the dream of earning a college education. Doing all that we can to make sure that this opportunity is one that ends in success is at the heart of OCCC s Achieving the Dream initiative.