Project Boomerang Aims To Bring Tulsa Students Back Post Graduation

Wednesday, July 22nd 2015, 11:35 pm
By: News On 6

The Tulsa Chamber is putting a big focus on bringing back high school and college students after they graduate.

It’s called Project Boomerang, and the message is that Tulsa has several internships and job opportunities for them.

The chamber did a lot of research with focus groups on how to get in touch and stay in touch with young Tulsans, and Wednesday they put it to the test.

One of the first questions was, “What does Tulsa need more of to make it a cooler place?”

There were no answers - vocally anyway - but the text messages were flowing, according to high school graduate, Will Morsman.

"That is how we communicate nowadays. It connects with us more than other things," he said.

Brian Paschal with the Tulsa Chamber said, "We realized we have a lot of ambitious students that we aren't communicating with in the four or five years they’re in college."

For the chamber, events similar to Wednesday’s are a way to easily build a database of Tulsa high schoolers like Morsman, who will be attending OSU in the fall.

They will send regular internship and job opportunities to those students to keep them in the loop.

"After doing focus groups, we realized they really weren't as connected to the city as they wanted to be, and they said they were interested in getting more info on the city after they left," Paschal said.

Morsman said, "A lot of times people don't notice high school students, but the fact that the city is making an initiative to get us involved is really important."

Even over holidays like Christmas, the chamber will tweet and text the teens in the database about community events - even things like updates on the Gathering Place.

A number of teens are realizing everything that’s happening in Tulsa and said they decided to stick around because of what they're hearing and seeing.