Oklahoma State University recently honored its first graduate of the university’s new bachelor’s degree program in Aerospace Logistics, a unique program offered entirely in Oklahoma City at Rose State College.
Madison Mullens was honored as the first recipient of that degree during a gathering on the campus of Rose State College, which is located in Midwest City. She was joined by college and university officials, industry executives, OSU alumni, state officials and other well wishers.
Also honored at the celebration were Dr. Keith Hardiman of Tinker Air Force Base and Dr. Erin Nelson of The Boeing Company, both of whom graduated with a Doctor of Education Degree in Aviation and Space.
(Photo – "OSU recently recognized some recent graduates from the university’s Aviation Education programs during a celebration at Rose State College in Midwest City. From left to right are Dr. Frances Hendrix of Rose State; graduates Dr. Keith Hardiman, Madison Mullens and Dr. Erin Nelson; and OSU faculty and staff members Dr. Bert Jacobson, Dr. Mary Kutz and Dr. Steve Marks.")
Dr. Bert Jacobson, head of OSU’s School of Educational Studies, honored all the graduates of OSU’s aerospace degree programs
located in Oklahoma City with particular emphasis on the milestone for the new Aerospace Logistics degree with Madison Mullens as its first graduate.
Mullens graduated from Rose State with an associate degree in business before making the decision to apply to OSU’s Aerospace Logistics Program.
“After visiting with OSU’s engineering counselor and then Dr. (Mary) Kutz about the program, it sounded like a great opportunity. So I jumped in a little blind and it has turned out to be one of the best decisions I’ve ever made,” Mullens said.
Dr. Frances Hendrix, vice president of Academic Affairs at Rose State College, and OSU professor Dr. Steve Marks commented on the planning, development and rapid success of the program.
Dr. Kutz, associate professor at OSU and the university’s aviation education coordinator for Oklahoma City said, “The support that we have had for the new Aerospace Logistics program is unbelievable. We really didn’t expect to have our first student until 2009 but Madison came to us in 2008; so we have our first graduate a year ahead of schedule. Enrollment is ahead of schedule in that we now have 10 students who have enrolled in the program and several applicants pending.”
Mullens said that she would like to eventually work for an aviation company in some type of management role but would also like to begin working on her master’s degree (which is also offered by OSU along with a doctorate in aviation and space on the Rose State College campus).
“Being the first graduate is a little surreal, but it’s exciting. I have met so many great people in the process and wouldn’t trade the experience for anything,” Mullens said.
Awarded through OSU’s College of Education, the Aerospace Logistics degree was created in 2007 from a two-by-two partnership between OSU and Rose State at the request of industry and government officials. Students enrolled in the program graduate from Rose State with a two-year degree and then transfer to OSU to complete their Bachelor of Science in Aerospace Administration and Operations with an Aerospace Logistics option.
Officials from Boeing and several of Oklahoma’s largest aerospace employers as well as the Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission collaborated with OSU and Rose State to develop the program’s curriculum after identifying deficiencies and specific needs within the state’s aerospace industry.
“We had good engineers and good technicians, but one thing we didn’t have was people who really understood the business of aerospace logistics in Oklahoma. And quite frankly, there wasn’t a college that taught it,” said Ben Robinson, former Oklahoma City site director for Boeing who has since retired from Boeing and is currently working for the Oklahoma School of Science and Math.
With Midwest City located right next door to Tinker Air Force Base, it was only logical to ask Rose State to partner with OSU in this new degree program, Robinson said.
Graduates with a degree in Aerospace Logistics have employment opportunities not only with Oklahoma’s aerospace industry, the largest industry in the state, but with military and civilian aerospace organizations worldwide as well as with non-aerospace organizations.
For more information about the Aerospace Logistics degree program or other aviation education programs offered by OSU at Rose State, please contact Dr. Kutz at 733-7940. For information about the Rose State Associate degree programs, call the Rose State campus advisement office.