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A Publication of Connors State College

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C O N N O R S S TAT E C O L L E G E W ARNER CAMPUS 700 College Road Warner, OK 74469

Inside this issue V O L U M E

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T H R E E R IV E R S PORT CAMPUS 2501 N 41st St E Muskogee, OK 74403

A D M I N I S T R AT I O N IN TE RIM PRESID ENT Dr. Ronald S. Ramming I N T E R IM V IC E PRESID ENT FOR ACADEMIC AFFAIRS Dr. Julie Dinger V IC E PRESID ENT FOR FISCAL SERVICES Mike Lewis

CONNECTION LA Y OUT & D ESIGN Jonathan Dallis C ONT RIBUT ORS Cindy Anderson Dr. Ryan Blanton Wayne Bunch Jonathan Dallis Stacy Pearce Libby Schroeder

3 COMMUNITY 5 C O W B OY FA M I LY 7 E D U C AT I O N 9 AT H L E T I C S 10 C A M P U S L I F E 13 F E AT U R E

C S C S t udent s S peak w it h Legis l at or s at S t at e C apit ol • #I H ear t H igherE d Day

Reverend Leroy Walker Sheds Light on Black Histor y • Baseball Opening Day Bash & Auction

Meet Adams, Foster, Dallis & Sánchez

Nichols Speaks on Entrepreneurship Cowgirls & Cowboys Get Victor y Over Western OK State • C ow boy s S weep in O pener • S hoot ing S por t s Team Plac es H i gh in S an A nt onio • R odeo C ompet es at K ans as S t at e • Judgers & S how Team C om pet e at D ix i e N at i onals Aggie Homecoming • All School Homecoming • Fant as y R odeo

Social

Media

#CONNORSSTATE

facebook.com/ connorsstate

twitter.com/ connorsstate

youtube.com/ connorsstatecollege

instagram.com/ connorsstate

Connors State College, in compliance with Title VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Executive Order 11246 as amended, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and other federal laws and regulations, does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, religion, disability, or status as a veteran in any of its policies, practices or procedures. This includes but is not limited to admissions, employment, financial aid, and educational services. This publication was printed and issued by Connors State College as authorized by the Director of College and Community Relations. The information given herein is for educational purposes only. Reference to commercial products or trade names is made with the understanding that no discrimination or endorsement is intended by Connors State College.

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feature

CSC Students Speak with Legislators at State Capitol

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onnors State Student Government Association, and select members of the college joined more than 300 students, faculty and representatives from Oklahoma’s public colleges and universities at the state capitol Tuesday, February 14, to promote the value and importance of higher education in the state. Speakers included Chancellor Glen D. Johnson; Lt. Gov. Todd Lamb; Senate President Pro Tempore Mike Schulz; Rep. Jon Echols, Majority Floor Leader; and President Randy Beutler, chair, State System Council of Presidents. “Higher Education Day affords students and campus representatives an opportunity to meet with their legislators and make the case that investing in higher education must be a top state priority,” said Chancellor Glen D. Johnson.

“Despite historic budget cuts to higher education in FY 2017, our state system of higher education remains committed to increasing college degree and certificate attainment, which strengthens Oklahoma’s economy and workforce.” For FY 2018, the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education have requested $957.9 million. Strengthening Oklahoma’s workforce pipeline through the Complete College America degree and certificate completion plan continues to be the state system of higher education’s top priority. The State Regents are requesting $122.7 million for degree completion programs and initiatives. This investment will provide state colleges and universities funding to meet instruction and academic enterprise requirements and for institutional scholarships. Increased financial aid funding will

also be a priority for the State Regents in the upcoming legislative session. The State Regents are seeking $12.7 million to restore scholarship programs and fully fund the concurrent enrollment program, which provides tuition waivers to high school seniors who enroll in college coursework during their senior year. In an effort to bring awareness to higher education in the state, Connors State College took to the internet for a viral social media campaign, using the hashtag “#Ihearthighered”, the marketing department published photos of faculty, staff, and students throughout Connors State College holding signs made for the campaign, as well as flooding social media sites Twitter, Instagram and Facebook with photos, status updates, custom graphics, and messages of support of higher education. CONNORS CONNECTION

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Community

Reverend Leroy Walker Sheds Light on Black History

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n Tuesday, February 21, Reverend Leroy Walker of Rayfield Baptist Church in Muskogee came to Connors State in Warner to speak on the richness of black hisory in Oklahoma. “When we look at black history, I know we all think of the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s, and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.” said Walker. “But I tell you – there is more to black history than Martin Luther King, and the ‘I Have a Dream’ speech. I challenge you to pick up one of his books and read his words; it is inspiring to read his sermons and writings.”

“Our history is rich, and I say “our” history because I am a black man,” said Walker. “I am not ashamed to be a black man, that’s who I am, I can’t change it, just like you can’t change who you are. But you can be proud of it.” During the event, students in attendance learned about history that is rarely mentioned in traditional textbooks. Walker spoke of The Underground Railroad, and the formation of black communities in Oklahoma, saying how cities popped up overnight. Walker said black Americans came to Oklahoma a number of ways:

some were slaves of Native Americans, others were free men and women, while some were in search of freedom of persecution from slavery. These men and women in Oklahoma were strong, and brave. They were entrepreneurs, building shops and businesses, tilling their own farms. “Black history goes on all the time,” said Walker. “You all are making history right now here at Connors State. Black history is not just in February, black history is 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 12 months out of the year – year after year.”

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Cowboys Host Thrid Annual Baseball Bash and Auction

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n Saturday, January 30, supporters of Connors State Baseball gathered in the Stone Student Union for the

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third annual Baseball Opening Day Bash & Auction. Cowboy fans from all over had a chance to meet the 2017 baseball team

and coaches, enjoy ballpark foods and bid on auction items for the Cowboy’s fundraiser.


Cowboy Family

Sarah Foster, Faculty

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arah Foster, Coordinator of Physical Therapist Assistant Curriculum Development & Accreditation, will teach a number of courses including Introduction to Physical Therapy, Kinesiology for PTAs, and Neurology and Rehabilitation, among others. Foster came to Connors State after graduating from the OU Health Sciences Center in Tulsa with her Master’s degree in Physical Therapy, however she attended several different schools along the way. “I started out at Oklahoma State University and attended there for two years until I married and moved to Kentucky with my husband,” said Foster. “While living in

Kentucky I attended Owensboro Community College, where my husband taught. That is where I developed a huge appreciation for the role of two year colleges.” Foster said she truly benefitted from having smaller class sizes and more individualized attention from faculty on the campus, and the benefit was obvious when she entered Physical Therapy school and had to apply physics knowledge to human anatomy and movement. “That is one of the reasons I feel so strongly about the value of education at Connors State,” said Foster. “The students here benefit from that same environment and individual attention from faculty, and the educational quality is excellent.” When Connors State developed the Physical Therapist Assistant program, Foster wanted the chance to come in and create and develop a quality program from the start. “I’ve always had the dream of teaching in the back of my mind, but I also love working as a physical therapist,” said Foster. “I was attracted to the idea of building a program and understanding it inside and out. This seemed the perfect chance to combine teaching and the field of physical therapy. I have confidence

that Connors will support and create a program that we can all be proud of.” In addition to teaching and serving as the program chair, Foster is also a member of the Connors State Wellness Committee, which has allowed her to meet and socialize with faculty and staff on both campuses. Foster says she strongly believes there is no substitute for individualized attention and investment from faculty in a student’s college experience, and at Connors State students have the opportunity to build relationships with faculty and staff which will greatly benefit them while they are enrolled, as well as after they graduate and move into their careers. “I really enjoy the comradery of the employees of Connors State,” said Foster. “So many people have been so supportive in this transition from health care into academia, and I have been so grateful for the support and willingness of others to help.” Outside of the college, she lives in Tahlequah with her husband Luke and their three children: Zephram, age 19, Josie, age 14, and Sadie, age 12. Foster enjoys working with the youth group and teaching Sunday school and children’s choir at First Baptist Tahlequah.

Mesa Adams, Student

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esa Adams grew up in Porum, Oklahoma, with aspirations of becoming a veterinarian, but as time went by she changed her focus to helping people instead of animals and has set her sights on becoming a nurse. When Adams first chose Connors State, she did so because it was close to home and to her family, but after touring the campus during Senior Day, Adams quickly made her decision based on the campus size and the friendly faces of faculty and staff members whom she met. Once she set her eyes on the college she looked for scholarship opportunities and applied for a role in the President’s Leadership Class, which is comprised

of students who demonstrate talent and outstanding achievement in academics, citizenship and leadership. Now, in the second semester of her freshman year, Adams is a prominent member of PLC, a student employee for Student Activities and a member of the Student Government Association. “Connors State PLC has helped me become a more responsible adult,” said Adams. “It has helped me break out of my shell, and to meet new friends and develop long lasting friendships and connections, which I hope to keep for years to come.” After graduation, Adams plans to persue her nursing degree and make an impact in the world. CONNORS CONNECTION

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Jonathan Dallis, Staff

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onathan Dallis, Digital Content Administrator, grew up in Fort Gibson, Oklahoma, as the youngest of four and always looked for ways to express his creativity with his older brothers and friends. At a young age he began working with video cameras and cassette tape recording equipment, creating home movies and radio shows for his family to enjoy. After high school, Dallis attended NSU where he worked as a staff writer and Editor-in-Chief of the school newspaper. There, Dallis wrote news copy, practiced photojournalism, and managed a staff of advertisers and writers for the weekly publication. In his senior year, he was a key member in the development of NSUtv,

the Broadcast Journalism department, and was employed by NSU as a writer and videographer for the Communications and Marketing department. During this time, Dallis received the Academic Achievement Award in Journalism in 2011 and 2012, and was a C.A.S.E Bronze Medalist for his 2012 NSU LipDub, a campus-wide music video, and hosted a web series titled “Green Country Grub”, where Dallis and his crew would travel around Oklahoma trying new foods and interviewing the chefs and owners. In the fall of 2012 Dallis obtained his Bachelor of Liberal Arts in Broadcast Journalism and Graphic Design from Northeastern State graduated magna cum laude. After college, Dallis began working at Okie Country 101.7 FM in Muskogee as a Multi-Media Producer, a position which allowed him to utilize his skills in the workforce. Dallis hosted an evening radio show titled “Country Nights with Jon Dallis”, and recorded hundreds of radio commercials, including those for Connors State, where he met with the marketing department and built a lasting relationship. “When I first came to work for Connors, I did so because I made friends with the

Humberto Sánchez, Alumnus Humberto Sánchez was born in the Dominican Republic and moved to the Bronx, New York, when he was 10. He graduated from South Bronx High School in 2000, and that year, was selected by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 9th round of the Major League Baseball Draft. However, Sánchez turned it down to attend Connors State College instead. After posting an 8-1 record and winning NJCAA Region II Pitcher of the Year in 2002, Sánchez signed for a bonus of $1 million, and began pitching in the Detroit Tigers 8

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minor league system in 2002. After a stint in the minors, splitting time between Double-A and Triple-A ball, he was promoted to the New York Yankees and made his major league debut on September 15, 2008, in the 8th inning against the Chicago White Sox. During minor league ball, Sánchez was named to the Midwest League’s mid-season All-Star team. In 2004, he was named the fifth best prospect for the Detroit organization by Baseball America.

recruiters and marketing staff,” said Dallis. “They all were very nice, and I could tell they worked for a company unlike any other. They spoke highly of the college and made it seem like the place to be. Now after two years of employment, I can see they were right. I have made some of my best friends right here at Connors.” Dallis said the first two years of college are often the hardest, as students are coming straight out of high school, where they had the comfort of life-long friends, small classes, and individualized learning. “A lot of students who go straight to a four-year university often struggle, because they are miles away from their friends and family, and the auditorium sized classes are daunting and often scare students,” said Dallis. “At Connors our faculty makes it their mission to break down the knowledge and explain it in a way that is manageable, and with our smaller class sizes students don’t feel ignored.” “Connors gave me a chance to grow and for that I am thankful,” said Dallis. “When you’re coming out of college with limited experience, many companies look the other way. Thankfully Connors has let me express my creativity for the betterment of the college and myself.”


Education Nichols Speaks on Entrepreneurship to Business Class

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haron Nichols, the Assistant State Director for Program Performance with the Oklahoma Small Business Development Center visited a Business Principles class, taught by Rhonda Wilson on the Muskogee Three Rivers Port Campus on Monday, February 6. Wilson’s class had been studying small businesses and entrepreneurship and invited Nichols to be a guest speaker, so students may speak one-on-one with a professional on the subject. “The government likes small businesses because they pay in taxes, and that makes them the backbone of our economy,” said Nichols. “A lot of people think small businesses are 20 or fewer, but the

government considers a small business to actually be 500 or fewer, so that ultimately makes more than 98 percent of the jobs in this country those of small businesses.” Nichols spoke to the students individually, asking them about their dreams and aspirations of small businesses in Muskogee and in surrounding areas, and spoke to them on the key factors of a small business and what they need to know before taking out the loan and opening shop. She spoke of interest rates on loans, overhead of inventory, profit margins, and the saturated market of a metro area. “As a business owner, you’re going to have to make some tough decisions,” said Nichols. “It’s great to have a business idea,

but what you do will not just effect you, it will affect your family, your employees, and everyone around you.” Nichols encouraged these young entrepreneurs not to mortgage their house on an idea, if they haven’t done their homework prior. “You have to think about the money, a lot of people start businesses on a dream, and maybe they even have investors – but they often forget about the market, and about the overhead of inventory,” said Nichols. “You have to test the market, to see if what you’re offering is actually in demand. You have to think through your ideas before you go into debt. If your business goes under, your shop may close, but your debt doesn’t go away.”

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Athletics Cowgirls Move to 18-6 with win against Western Oklahoma State

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onnors State Cowgirls moved one step closer to their first Region II berth in six years with an impressive 87-58 victory over Western Oklahoma State on Monday, February 13. The Cowgirls broke open a tightly contested Oklahoma Collegiate Athletic Conference clash with a 17-0 run to open the third quarter. “We came out a little sluggish in the first half, but made up for it in the second half,” said Cowgirls head coach Jamie Fisher. “We looked like a totally different team. That was a big win for us. We beat them by two in double overtime at their place last

Muse Jr. Leads Cowboys in Rout of Western Oklahoma State

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ill Muse Jr. drained four consecutive shots from behind the arc to open the game and the Connors State Cowboys never trailed in blowing past visiting Western Oklahoma State 89-76 in an Oklahoma Collegiate Athletic Conference clash at Melvin Self Field House. “We had four guys in double figures, all around the same amount and I think when we share the basketball like we did tonight, that we are a better team. That makes us a club with four options,” said coach Muse. The victory keeps Cowboys atop the OCAC by a full game 19-6, 9-3 while Northern Oklahoma-Enid defeated Redlands Monday night and they improved to 15-7 and 8-3.

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“We are now down to four games and if we win all four we win the championship,” said coach Muse. “But Tonkawa and Enid feel the same way.” Muse Jr. was red-hot from behind the arc scoring 12 points to open the game as he finished with 18 points to lead the Cowboys scoring. Three other Cowboys scored in double figures, Adarius Avery with 16, with Chris Crawford and Rashawn Langston scoring 15 points each. Connors converted 13 threes in the game was 14-of-21 at the free throw line. Connors held a 42-37 lead at the break before cruising to a 22-point advantage 85-63 with 3:12 left in the second half, the Cowboys largest lead of the night.

time. At times we are starting to figure it out. That win really separated us from the bottom half of the league. That win pushed us closer to that regional tournament.” “We are probably one victory away from clinching a berth in the tournament,” said Fisher. Eva Lewis, who finished with 21 points, ignited the third quarter rout, followed by DeNora Wheeland’s shot from behind the arc to put the Cowgirls lead to 12 points 49-37 with 8:12 left in the quarter. Mikiah McDonald finished with 16 points, which included 9-of-12 from the free throw line.


Connors Sweeps Home Series in Twinbill Opener

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ony Hrynkiw had three hits, two doubles and three RBIs in the opener, then added two hits in the second game as Connors State swept Otero College 16-6 and 9-1 on Wednesday, February 8, to complete a four-game series sweep. The Cowboys squandered nearly all of an 8-1 lead in the first game, but up 8-6 ended it with an eight-run fifth. Hayden

George had two hits and three RBIs. Noel Pinto started and gave up a run and struck out seven in four innings. In the second game, Northern added two doubles and a single and drove in a run. Luis Pelayo had two hits including a solo home run. Kane Koenigseder hit a two-run home run. Logan Gragg went five innings with no earned runs and five strikeouts.

Shooting Sports Team Aims High in San Antonio

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onnors State College Shooting Team competed in San Antonio, Texas, February 3-5, for the first shoot of the spring semester where they competed in Trap, Skeet, and Sporting Clays. Briley Cozad placed in the top 15 overall, and Destry Christensen was in the top 20 in Trap. Connors State had three in the top 25 in Sporting Clays: Zane Arnold, Briley Cozad, and Josh Casteel. Casteel also got in the top 20 overall and was in the top five in Sporting Clays busting 95/100 targets. There were more than 85 competitors and 13 schools from across the nation, including Texas A&M, Texas A&M-Corpus Christy, Oklahoma State University, and Fort Hays State University.

Connors State Rodeo Team Compete at Kansas State

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he Connors State College Rodeo Team competed at Kansas State University on February 17-19. Shawn Luman and Jase Holder finished

3rd in the short round and 3rd overall in the team roping. Kelsi Oyler finished 5th in the short round and 5th overall in the breakaway roping. Jeremy Carney

qualified for the short round in the tie-down roping. Brian Scamardo drew back and competed in the short round of the bull riding.

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Connors State Livestock Judgers Compete at Dixie Nationals

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he Connors State College judging team competed in the Dixie Nationals in Jackson, Mississippi. Both freshman and sophomore teams were named reserve champion teams in their respected divisions. Freshman results - Brahman Division: Madison David 2nd high; Austyn Fuss 4th high; 2nd high team. Continental: Sam Brake 5th high; Riley King 6th high; Austyn Fuss 7th high; Logan Corbett 8th high; Ben Porter 10th high; 2nd high team. English: Cindy Cooper 8th high; Tristan Gambill 9th high; 2nd high team. Steer Division: Austyn Fuss 10th high; 4th high team. Reasons: Austyn Fuss 4th high; Tristan Gambill 9th high; 4th high team. Austyn Fuss was also 2nd high individual Sophomore results - Brahmans: Jesse Henson 3rd high; Nico Menjivar 8th high; Amber Wright 9th high; 1st high team. Continental: Jesse Henson 9th high; 2nd high team. English: Nico Menjivar 4th high; 5th high team. Steer Division:

Zane Blubaugh 9th high; 3rd high team. Reasons: Jesse Henson 9th high; Nico Menjivar 10th high; 3rd high team.

Nico Menjivar was also 8th high individual.

Connors State Show Team Competes at Dixie Nationals

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he Connors State College Show Team recently traveled to the Dixie National Livestock Show in Jackson, Mississippi. The show team brought with them Simmental, Charolais, and Shorthorn cattle. The Show Team started the show off with two Simmental heifers in Class 2 and one heifer in Class 5. Erik Svendsen placed 2nd, while Corey Myers placed 5th in Class 2. Rylee Parsons placed 2nd in Class 5. The second day of showing was devoted to Charolais. The Show Team had their work cut out for them as there was stiff competition in the Charolais Bull Show. Matt Staples held his own and walked away with 2nd Reserve Division and Reserve Grand Champion Charolais Bull. 12

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On the last day, the Show Team showed one Shorthorn heifer and one Shorthorn bull. The team continued their success from the previous days with Elizabeth Leclaire placing 2nd in Class 5.

Lindsay Bisco showed the Shorthorn bull and placed 1st in her class and went on to win the Division and Grand Champion Shorthorn Bull.


Campus Life Johnson Crowned During Aggie Coronation

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onnors State College held their annual Aggie Homecoming coronation at half-time of the Connors State and Eastern Oklahoma College men’s basketball game on Monday, January 30, inside the Melvin Self Field House. Sophomore Raney Johnson was selected as Aggie Homecoming

Queen out of the 16 nominees, and was escorted by Brady Womack. Attendants included: (Top L-R) Hailee Mefford, Rylee Parsons, Keela Kemp, Bryce Wilson, Michaela Clark, Elizabeth Leclaire, Claire Bradbury, Raney Johnson, Libby Schroeder, Anna Scott, Emily Cantrell, Cullie Williams, Austyn Fuss, Madison

David, Amber Wright, and Fernanda Grisales. (Bottom L-R) Bobby Ramming, Matthew Staples, Zach Donley, Colin Miller, Colt Schrader, Sam Brake, Brady Womack, Nico Menjivar, Ben Porter, Logan Corbett, Zane Blubaugh, Riley King, Derek Sharp, Brett Jones, Jesse Henson.

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Homecoming Celebration Honors Johnson and Ramming

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n Monday, February 13, Connors State College crowned Bobby Ramming and Raney Johnson as the 2017 All School Homecoming King and Queen during half-time of the men’s basketball game against Western Oklahoma State College. Fifteen teams, clubs, groups and organizations presented candidates for both King and Queen. Applicants

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were interviewed by the Homecoming committee and the finalists then had a chance to campaign for faculty, staff and student votes. Voting took place in the Warner Student Union, and via email. Attendants included: (L-R) Zane Blubaugh, Anna Scott, Mason Gawf, Blaine Mackenzie, Zane Arnold, Ashley Laughlin, River Rolston, Justina Read, Kelton Wiggins, Tristine Laffoon, Brady

Womack, Mesa Adams, Dane West, Hailey Varnell, Levi Johnson, Bryce Wilson, Bobby Ramming, Raney Johnson, Ryan Ramming, Keela Kemp, Silas Dunn, Kierra Warrior, Kane Kindle, Kynzie Zellner, Dalton Markes, Cheyanne Gibbens, Jedediah Leavell, Natalie Bobbitt, Ryder Gann, Amber Markus. Crown bearer: Eddie Blanton; flower girl: Rosslyn Remer.


FANTASY RODEO On Thursday, February 9, Connors State College Student Activities and the Rodeo Team hosted a Fantasy Rodeo for all Faculty, Staff, and Students to compete in. Those in attendance were given access to an online score sheet where they selected members of the Connors State Rodeo Team to add to their fantasy lineup. Each participating team member was ranked by the Rodeo coaches prior to the event based on their skills and abilities.

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C O N N O R S S TAT E C O L L E G E 700 College Road | Warner, OK 74469

Sophomores Bobby Ramming and Raney Johnson were crowned the 2017 All School Homecoming King and Queen. 16

VOLUME 7 NUMBER 2

Connection: Volume 7, Number 2.  

A publication of Connors State College in Warner and Muskogee, Oklahoma -- the Connection: Volume 7, Number 2.

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