Grant To Boost TCC's Presence In East Tulsa

Thursday, August 27th 2009, 5:00 pm
By: News On 6

By Dan Bewley and Terry Hood, The News On 6

TULSA, OK -- Tulsa Community College hopes a $250,000 donation helps change lives in east Tulsa.

The Bank of America donated that amount to add on to TCC'S Resource Center on Garnett, a place some students say is key to their education.

Nearly 100 students are starting their college education in a small building near 21st and Garnett: the Tulsa Community College Education Outreach Center.

"I just graduated high school. I found this here, and I love it," said Leticia Madrid, a TCC student.

Leticia Madrid is part of a Thursday afternoon writing class.  She's working towards a degree in business management.

"Since it's smaller, I think, it's more personal," Madrid said. "You have more one-on-one time."

The TCC Education Outreach Center provides classes for students looking to start college or adults studying for their GED. But TCC officials say the center's location is what makes it stand out.

"We are in a lower income community that may struggle with transportation issues," said Isaac Hiriart, Outreach Center Manager.  "They have to get to work, to school.

The center is about to grow thanks to the Bank of America's generous donation.

The Bank of American recently gave TCC $250,000 to help to help buy a building located behind the current facility.

The 2,000 square foot building will soon be home to another five classes. It is space that's desperately needed, TCC officials say, when you consider they have one classroom now that's booked from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Students say the additional room will make a big impact in the community.

David McDonald lost his job in January and says, through his interpreter, that the Resource Center for the Deaf And Hard Of Hearing has been a blessing to help him work for his degree.

"I think it's a much better opportunity for people to be able to come here and be students and learn what's going on, I think it's wonderful to have their support.

The TCC expects construction to take close to a year, and they hope to have the new building up and running by this time next year.

Find out more about TCC.