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Initiatives and Collaborations - updated weekly!

Degrees of Geriatrics

Degrees of Geriatrics is an interdisciplinary approach to enhancing societal awareness of dementia and aging related challenges through education, outreach and research.  Monthly open meetings are held on the OU-Tulsa campus on the 2nd Monday of each month from noon – 1:30 pm.
Degrees of Geriatrics Agendas and Presentations
Meeting Process

The Neighborhood Kitchens Project

The Neighborhood Kitchens Project connects low-income families to community resources while providing a family meal in a safe, comfortable environment.

Tulsa Area Community Schools Initiative (TACSI)

The Tulsa Area Community Schools Initiative (TACSI) provides leadership and influence to engage local communities in creating and sustaining community schools that support academic success and strengthen children, families, and communities.  OUCEC was part of the original team supporting the creation of community schools in the Tulsa area and continues to participate on the TACSI Management Team. OU-Tulsa is represented on the TACSI Steering Committee.

Workforce Tulsa Youth Council

The Youth Council recommends and coordinates youth policies/programs for the Tulsa Area Workforce Investment Board, while developing systems that offer youth a broad range of coordinated services and linkages with other youth serving organizations. The TAWIB Youth Council provides expertise in youth policy and oversight of local youth programs, as well as advice to the board on youth-related issues, including those that may impact the success of youth in the labor market.

E3 Model - Engage, Empower, Educate

The E3 Model is a mentoring outreach program aimed at at-risk female youth in high schools. The program was piloted at McLain High School during the 2008-2009 school year.

Higher Ed Forum

Nine area universities meet monthly to develop opportunities for high school students to stay in the educational pipeline upon graduation and move seamless into higher education.

Higher Ed Forum site.

Building Dynamic Partnerships in Public Health: Using Wiki Technology to Connect the Tulsa Public Health Workforce with National Library of Medicine Resources

Through partnership with the OU-Tulsa Library, the OU Community Engagement Center works with Tulsa Public Health agencies to provide training and innovative project management tools.

Building Dynamic Partnerships Wiki Link

Union Collegiate Academy

An invitation-only program for Union High School students that features lectures and programs by local university faculty members on a myriad of topics including college selection, research methods and leadership skills and development.

Union Collegiate Academy

The Oklahoma Academy

OUCEC Executive Director serves as a panel member to promote higher education as a vital component of community partnerships.

Northeastern Oklahoma Nutrition Coalition (NEOK)

OUCEC collaborated with OU College of Nursing to create NEOK: The Mission of the Northeastern Oklahoma Nutrition Coalition is to improve school and community wellness through the implementation of nutrition and physical activity best practices and the promotion of community health education and wellness initiatives.

Steering committee:
Denise Senger, Pam Rask, Tim Neller, Russell Burkhart, Trish Pruitt, Lisa Griffin Standing Committees: Policy and Advocacy,
Nutritional Science and Best Practice Resources Community Engagement(Outreach) and Education.

For more information, please email Denise Senger, OU College of Nursing at

Adolescent Depression Awareness Program (ADAP)

The Adolescent Depression Awareness Program (ADAP) began in 1999 at Johns Hopkins University in response to several adolescent suicides in the Baltimore area. The program is designed to educate high school students, teachers, and parents about adolescent depression. ADAP includes a school-based curriculum with the central message that depression is a treatable medical illness. Additional components of the program include training for educators as well as parent and community presentations. Through education, ADAP increases awareness about depression and bipolar disorder, stressing the need for evaluation and treatment while decreasing the stigma associated with mood disorders.

The program was brought to Tulsa schools through the Youth Philanthropy Initiative (YPI).  This is a high school leadership program funded by the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation (CLSFF).  A select group of twenty local teens work together over two or three years and throughout the school year to identify and research an important teen issue in the community and implement it.  The ADAP program was so successful and well-received that it was decided to continue the program within OU with continued funding support from the (CLSFF).

Youth Philanthropy Initiative (YPI)

"We believe that youth philanthropy can be a powerful tool for community youth development, and it has the potential to enhance academic achievement. Our goal is to provide a leadership training program for teens that will help them to contribute positively to the community, make important decisions, and take meaningful action."
Lynn Schusterman

The Youth Philanthropy Initiative (YPI) is an innovative program designed to inspire and train the next generation of Tulsa leaders and philanthropists. In partnership with OU and local community and education leaders, it is modeled after some of the most effective programs in the country, YPI is the first of its kind in Oklahoma.

In Tulsa, YPI is a select group of twenty local teens who work together over two or three years and throughout the school year to identify and research an important teen issue in the community. CLSFF provides the group with $15,000 for allocation. Relieved of the fundraising aspect of charitable giving, YPI participants are able to focus on the issue they have selected, researching resolutions, and awarding grant support to the agencies they believe are best-situated to respond to the needs of the community. They meet with Tulsa leaders, make site visits to several non-profit agencies and award grants to support critical needs for teens in the Tulsa area.
The OUCEC is the “home” for YPI at OU-Tulsa.  The Center schedules and provides meeting space in the OU Learning Center, manages the budget for the program, and assists in obtaining for the students whatever they need for their projects.

YPI is a powerful opportunity for teens to share their voice, develop leadership skills, create solutions, become change agents, and build a strong foundation for Tulsa’s future.

Oklahoma Campus Compact

Oklahoma Campus Compact (OkCC) supports the civic purpose of higher education that includes developing students as citizens.  OkCC will assist member institutions in their efforts to develop citizenry skills by promoting and advancing methodologies including service-learning, volunteerism, community service, and political engagement.  Campus Compact is the invited guest speaker for the September OUCEC Higher Ed Forum meeting.

The Coalition for Community Schools

The Coalition for Community Schools is alliance of national, state and local organizations in education K-16, youth development, community planning and development, family support, health and human services, government and philanthropy as well as national, state and local community school networks. The Coalition advocates for community schools as the vehicle for strengthening schools, families and communities so that together they can improve student learning. It is a program of the Institute for Educational Leadership.

Step Up Tulsa

Step Up Tulsa has served as a broad-based catalyst for the Tulsa region.  By bringing together 150 community members from diverse professional sectors, geographic areas and ethnic background to research identify the critical issues to make the Tulsa area a successful 21st century region.

A significant step to achieving success is to ensure that every student graduates from high school prepared to pursue a 21st century career. OU-Tulsa Community Engagement Center has embraced the Community School strategy of Step Up Tulsa to link high school students and their families with the community resources needed to make them successful life-long learners.


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