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Hunter Hart uses Honors Program to broaden his horizons

Hunter Hart could’ve easily continued his family’s legacy at Oklahoma State University, but The University of Tulsa offered him something that OSU could not — a completely unique student population. Hart grew up only 20 minutes away from TU, and although he was hesitant to attend a university so close to home TU’s diversity appealed to him.

hunter hart“There’s more international students than there are students from Oklahoma at TU,” he said. “I’m surrounded by a whole new group of people and set of ideas, and I think that’s important.”

Hart was accepted into the TU Honors Program his freshman year, a refreshing perspective from the math and science courses he takes as a chemical engineering major. Honors students complete four courses over a two-year period: Greek history, the Enlightenment, history and philosophy of science, and contemporary or emerging issues.

“It opens my mind up and allows me to explore my spirituality and other philosophies I have,” he said.

Hart’s advisers are eager to help him excel through opportunities in the College of Engineering and Natural Sciences as well as the Honors Program. Hart wrote the essay “Philosophy, Spirituality and Academic Ambition” for submission to a liberal arts conference in California under the suggestion of Honors Program Director Denise Dutton. He was accepted to the 60-student nationwide conference where he presented his essay and was one of only three students selected for publication in the Agora, a journal for scholarly undergraduate papers.

Now a junior, Hart has completed the program and is developing his Honors plan, involving topics that further his education in a way chemical engineering cannot. He hopes to establish a career in the energy industry, but he also enjoys journalism. Hart has created a sports blog about Golden Hurricane athletics and he hopes to launch a podcast modeled after the This American Life public radio show. The program would feature stories of college students.

“I want to talk to students to know what they’re thinking and feeling,” he said.

Hart is exploring his career options in oil and gas through summer internships in human resources at Helmerich & Payne Inc. and on a drilling rig at Occidental Petroleum. He plans to use his TU education to continually develop as an employee and valuable asset to a company.

“I don’t want to be a stagnant worker, and I don’t want to be in a company that’s stagnant,” he said. “With my degree, I hope to bring a new way of thought and a new way of solving problems.”