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OU-Tulsa Programs Grow From Community Support

University of Oklahoma President David L. Boren today announced that Tulsa foundations and corporations are providing more than $2.3 million in new grants and continued funding to OU-Tulsa programs to provide outstanding experiences for students and to enhance outreach for the community. Boren made the announcement in Tulsa at the regular meeting of the OU Board of Regents.

“We are thankful for the opportunities this new funding will provide for our OU-Tulsa programs,” said Boren. “The generosity of our supporters continues to foster the collaborative work that is truly changing lives in the Tulsa community.”

“As we move forward at OU-Tulsa, it is our goal to foster the innovation, entrepreneurship and sustainability of our work,” said Gerard P. Clancy, M.D, OU-Tulsa president. “The support from the community both in the corporate and philanthropic sectors allows us to grow programs and provide services to our community while providing outstanding educational experiences for our students right here in Tulsa.”

Support includes:

·         A $163,000 grant from the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation to fund the Youth Philanthropy Initiative Cohort VI. This innovative program selects 25 high school students from across Tulsa to participate in a three-year program to learn about how to be change agents in their communities and encourages them to contribute their time, talent and treasure to the community they live in.

·         Funding in the amount of $269,000 from the George Kaiser Family Foundation to the OU-Tulsa Early Childhood Student Loan Forgiveness Program established by the foundation in 2008. Through this effort, the foundation has provided financial support to students pursuing a degree in early childhood education. The foundation has committed more than $867,200 to this program over the years and recently contributed an additional $269,000 to assist students through this academic school year. Early childhood teachers instill knowledge, provide guidance and serve as mentors to young children, some of whom are Tulsa’s most vulnerable citizens. 

·         A contribution of $235,000 from the George Kaiser Family Foundation in support of the OU Childhood Education Institute to continue research focused on early childhood education. The Institute currently has three major applied research projects, including a collaboration with Tulsa’s three Educare sites and CAP-Tulsa’s Head Start Program. 

·         A $30,000 grant from the Hilti Group, which provides leading-edge technology to the global construction industry, to establish a scholar award within the OU College of Engineering. The Hilti Scholar funds will help support a qualifying doctoral student in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the Schusterman Center campus in Tulsa.

·         A $490,000 gift from the St. John Health System to the OU School of Community Medicine in support of surgery and internal medicine educational programs. The OU school works with area hospitals to provide an outstanding and enriching educational experience to the school’s 205 medical residents. 

·         A $500,000 contribution from Saint Francis Health System to the Department of Pediatrics at the School of Community Medicine to enhance the medical education program for students and provide additional clinical educational experiences for residents.

·         Support from the George Kaiser Family Foundation, QuikTrip Corporation, Sharna and Irvin Frank Foundation, Cox Communications, American Academy of Pediatrics Child Access to Community Health Program, and Morningcrest Healthcare Foundation for the Street Outreach Clinic operated by the OU School of Community Medicine and located on the Youth Services of Tulsa campus. The program provides needed care to homeless youth in the Tulsa area. Homeless youth can receive acute and primary care from OU School of Community Medicine physicians as well as screenings for physical and behavior health. The clinic also coordinates various health promotion events, which are designed to promote preventive care. In addition, the weekly clinic serves as a service learning venue for students in pharmacy, nursing and social work to develop skills in health education and promotion. 

·         Support from the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation for programs designed to assist and support children who are suspected victims of child abuse and maltreatment. The Foundation has a strong commitment to these vulnerable Oklahomans and recently hosted a team of OU-Tulsa faculty and staff members at the Haruv Institute in Israel. The Haruv Institute, in collaboration with Hebrew University, has demonstrated that effective child maltreatment prevention and early intervention requires a deep understanding of cultural, historical and environmental issues. While in Israel, the OU-Tulsa team developed a broader understanding about the Haruv Institute programs and discussed further collaborations between the two institutions, including a possible student and faculty exchange program.

·         A gift of $194,000 to OU from the George Kaiser Family Foundation to support OU’s participation in a partnership with the YMCA, Morton Comprehensive Health Services and Educare families to promote fitness, nutrition, wellness and early intervention for emergency illness.

·         A $481,000 contribution from the George Kaiser Family Foundation to support the Healthy Women-Healthy Futures program, an OU nursing initiative that promotes the best of health among women living in poverty as well as intensive support while they are pregnant.

Two OU School of Community Medicine Clinics, the Bedlam Evening and Bedlam Longitudinal Clinics, recently marked the 10-year anniversary of providing care for the underserved in Tulsa. The clinics were created in response to harsh economic times in Tulsa following the September 11 attacks of 2001. Job losses created a dramatic rise in the number of uninsured. With nowhere else to go, those without coverage flooded local emergency rooms, straining hospital budgets and staff, and costing patients much more than a regular physician office visit.

OU-Tulsa convened a summit of state and local leaders and agencies to analyze Oklahoma’s poor health statistics – among the worst in the nation – and propose solutions. One of the first actions recommended was creation of a free, walk-in evening clinic for the working uninsured, staffed by medical students and volunteer physicians. In August 2003, funded by private donations, the Bedlam Evening Clinic, also known as “Bedlam – E,” opened, offering free acute and limited specialty care. More than 100 patients were waiting in line the first night it opened. One hundred percent of all patients seen at Bedlam Clinics are low income, typically falling under the 200 percent bracket of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Federal Poverty Guidelines.

OU receives no direct state or federal funding for the clinics, operated exclusively through private donations, which have totaled more than $6.2 million over 10 years. The clinics have treated some 7,800 patients in the last 10 years, conducting more than 62,000 patient appointments. The estimated savings to patients or hospitals due to diversion from hospital emergency rooms over the 10-year period is more than $56 million.

The University of Oklahoma Schusterman Center is home to all OU programs in Tulsa. Located on a 60-acre campus at 41st and Yale, it strengthens OU’s presence in northeast Oklahoma and expands educational, research and patient care programs in the Tulsa area. OU-Tulsa offers at total of 41 programs, including six bachelor’s degree completion programs; 14 master’s degree programs, including the physician assistant program, nurse practitioner program, doctoral programs in medicine, physical therapy, education, early childhood education, engineering, pharmacy and nursing, as well as 11 residency programs in medicine. It is also home to the OU School of Community Medicine, the first of its kind in the nation, created with the explicit purpose of improving the health of all Oklahoma communities. For more information about OU-Tulsa, call (918) 660-3318 or visit