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Biden Administration Delivers Grant to Western Oklahoma State College to Expand Education Opportunities

Joel Mease
Release Date

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development and Oklahoma State Director Kenneth Corn announced today nearly $1 million in grant, which was awarded on behalf of the Biden Administration to Western Oklahoma State College to expand professional development in Greer, Harmon and Jackson Counties.

Funding is through USDA Rural Development’s Distance Learning and Telemedicine (DLT) grant program. The program helps rural education and health care entities remotely reach students, patients and outside expertise. These capabilities make world-class education and health care opportunities accessible in rural communities. The ability to use virtual education and telehealth resources is critical to reach remote and rural towns and tribal communities in Oklahoma for these areas to grow and prosper.

“The President believes all Americans regardless of their zip code or financial background deserve access to worldclass education,” Corn said. “Through this grant the staff at Western Oklahoma State College is able to directly reach the classrooms of rural high schools to help prepare those students and improve our educational outcomes for rural and tribal communities.”

This competitive program helps rural communities use advanced telecommunications technology to connect to each other - and the world - overcoming the effects of remoteness and low population density. Applicants are encouraged to consider projects that promote equity and economic opportunity in rural America, specifically those that advance these key priorities:

  • Supporting health care needs stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic, and helping prepare for future pandemic events
  • Ensuring racial equity
  • Rebuilding our rural economy
  • Addressing the climate crisis

“The Biden-Harris Administration is committed to delivering impactful changes for rural America, and by harnessing technology we can make meaningful and impactful changes for thousands of rural Oklahomans through this program,” Corn said. “I can’t think of a better partner than Western Oklahoma State College to help us deliver that change to our rural students in our western part of the state.”

USDA Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities, create jobs and improve the quality of life for millions of Americans in rural areas. This assistance supports infrastructure improvements; business development; housing; community facilities such as schools, public safety and health care; and high-speed internet access in rural, tribal and high-poverty areas. To learn more, visit https://www.rd.usda.gov/ok.