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Grant to aid single mothers at OSU-OKC

Oklahoma State University-Oklahoma City has received a $5,000 grant from the Women’s Foundation of Oklahoma to help single mothers attending the university.

More than 300 students who are single mothers are enrolled at OSU-OKC, and many report that they have limited financial resources, and are struggling to make ends meet while seeking a better future for themselves and their children. This grant aims to help in that regard.   

“By partnering with the Women’s Foundation of Oklahoma, we are able to create a supportive environment that provides solutions to known barriers that single mothers face,” said Jackie Weston, senior director of institutional grants and compliance at Oklahoma State University-Oklahoma City (OSU-OKC). “Our goal is to help struggling mothers achieve their dreams and career goals, allowing them to better provide for themselves and their families.”

This is the eighth year WFO has provided a grant for OSU-OKC.

“Over the past five years we have seen a 12% increase in retention rates for students who are single mothers,” Weston said. “We believe this is due to the support services we are able to provide through WFO grant funds.”

WFO grant funding allows OSU-OKC to provide students who are single mothers with backpacks with class supplies, bus vouchers, meal vouchers, emergency child care vouchers, and more. 

The funding also allows OSU-OKC to offer a separate New Student Orientation for single mothers to discuss topics specific to their needs. The school also sends a series of encouragement letters to students who are single mothers to provide information about support services available, and invite them in for one-on-one conversations with staff. 

Additionally, OSU-OKC connects students who are single mothers to scholarship opportunities and community resources.  Additional campus services include free tutoring, workshops focusing on topics such as personal finance and resume building, and participation in the OSU-OKC Cowboy Kids holiday program which provides up to three Christmas gifts per child. 

“While helping single mothers complete a degree program is a financial win for the students and their families, it is also a win for Oklahoma, as it will allow students to successfully enter the workforce,” Weston said.

For more information about OSU-OKC, go to www.osuokc.edu.