TULSA, Oklahoma -- A Tulsa couple has donated $2.5 million to Oklahoma State University in an effort to keep Oklahoma graduates at home. David and Tracy Kyle's gift launches a new scholarship program that pays off when OSU graduates remain and work in Oklahoma after graduation, according to a news release.
The scholarship provides up to $25,000 to help pay off student loans.
The endowment will be supplemented by the T. Boone Pickens Legacy Scholarship match.
David Kyle is the former CEO of ONEOK. He said he recognizes the importance of attracting and keeping OSU graduates at local companies.
"For many years we have been told that the better jobs are out of state," said David Kyle, who retired as CEO in 2007 but is still chairman of the board.
"We believe Oklahoma is a great state with just as much to offer, has a great quality of life, and lots of opportunity. This scholarship program should help us compete - Oklahoma companies win, the state wins, and, just as importantly, OSU graduates win."
Kyle graduated from OSU in 1974 as an industrial engineer. He earned his master's degree in part thanks to a scholarship from Oklahoma Natural Gas Company.