Students looking to start their college education on the prairie or people who want to learn necessary skills to begin new a new career should consider Western Oklahoma State College, a small-enrollment community college located in rural Altus, Oklahoma.
WOSC offers a variety of programs catering to both academic and career interests. The college is a partner of Altus Air Force Base and offers several aviation related courses. The college recently greatly expanded its online course offerings and is awaiting permission from the state to offer associate’s degrees entirely online.
WOSC splits the difference between academic and career offerings well, giving students a balance of courses to choose from. Like many colleges, WOSC has seen an influx of older students seeking to retool for second and third careers.
WOSC offers approximately 47 programs which students can study to earn associate’s degrees and certificates. Some standout programs which provide academic and practical training for students include the college’s fire, police and public safety programs; health programs; and engineering programs.
The most popular degree programs at WOSC include:
- Health Professions: 39 percent of enrollment
- Liberal Arts: 13 percent of enrollment
- Business/Marketing: 9 percent of enrollment
- Public Safety related majors 9 percent of enrollment
- Family and Consumer Sciences: 6 percent of enrollment
WOSC has recently improved its distance learning courses and now offers distance learning online, via telecourse, and via interactive video.
Relationships with Other Schools
Western Oklahoma State College has a close relationship with Altus Air Force Base and has been designated a “military-friendly” school. The college also maintains good ties with local high schools and Oklahoma state universities, offering programs to ease high school students transition into WOSC and ease transitions for WOSC students into four-year schools throughout the state of Oklahoma.
The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, which accredits schools in Arkansas, Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. The association also accredits schools for the Navajo Nation.
Most Popular Fields of Study
Western Oklahoma State College has an open admissions policy, but all prospective students are required to take the ACT and placement tests, which determine whether students need to take remedial courses. Students also need to submit official high school transcripts. While admissions are open, some programs at the college have pre-requisites that students must complete in order to be admitted. Western Oklahoma State College has a rolling admissions deadline; however, there is a deadline for financial aid applications.
As of Sept. 2011, the college has a $15 application fee.
Students applying to Western Oklahoma State College are eligible for federal grants and student loans. There are also a number of grants and scholarships offered by the state of Oklahoma, the college itself, and other outside organizations that students may be eligible for. WOSC Presidential Academic Scholarships, which are available to entering freshmen who have an ACT score of 23 or higher, can pay between $1,600 and $2,400 per semester. Students must complete 12 credit hours with a 3.0 GPA per semester to maintain the scholarship.
The office of financial stands ready to help students find other grants and scholarships they may be eligible for. About 58 percent of students at Western Oklahoma State College receive student aid in terms of loans, grants or scholarships. Financial aid applications must be submitted by March 1.
Student Financial Aid Details
With approximately 1500 students, Western Oklahoma State College is a small-enrollment school that gives students the opportunity to study in a more nurturing, slower-paced setting than traditional four-year universities. Combine this with the lower cost of community college and its little wonder why Oklahoma college students from the Altus area chose to start their college careers at WOSC.
The college is home to a variety of student clubs and organizations including professional, academic, religious and recreational groups. The college newspaper is the Pioneer News.
WOSC, unlike most community colleges, offers student housing. The college opened student housing in 1999 and has space for about 100 students. Resident students have access to the college’s dining hall and wellness center. The school’s library occupies more than 30,000 square feet and gives students access to more than 32,000 print and non-print resources.
The college provides a number of resources for students, including tutoring, counseling and career help. One unique program is the WINDS program, which helps give first-generation and disabled college students extra support to help them succeed. Security is also provided for students to help make WOSC a safe campus.
Student Enrollment Demographics
Western Oklahoma State College is a member of the NCJAA and competes in the Bi-State Conference. The school has a proud athletic tradition, competing in several sports which include men’s baseball, basketball, golf and rodeo; and women’s softball, golf, rodeo, cheerleading and basketball.
Western Oklahoma State College’s baseball team captured the NCJAA Division II championship in 2011, defeating Jones County Junior College of Mississippi. The rodeo team makes regular appearances in college national rodeo competitions and in 2011 a team member won the Reserve National Championship Title.
Western Oklahoma State College’s teams are known as the Pioneers. Its colors are green and gold.
- “Home – Western Oklahoma State College | Altus, OK.” Home – Western Oklahoma State College | Altus, OK. N.p., n.d. Web. 27 Sept. 2011. <http://www.wosc.edu/>.
- Gonsher, Debra A., and Joshua Halberstam. The community college guide: the essential reference from application to graduation. Dallas, Tex.: BenBella Books, 2009. Print.
- The Insider’s guide to the colleges Students on Campus Tell You What You Really Want to Know. New York: St. Martin’s Griffin, 1970. Print.