More than 1,000 miles separate Dana Urbanek’s small township in New Jersey from the city of Tulsa, but Urbanek feels at home in both places. After being recruited by TU rowing coach Kevin Harris, it only took one campus visit to turn her into a Golden Hurricane.
Urbanek began her TU journey in the fall of 2008, pursuing bachelor’s degrees in elementary education, secondary education and mathematics – all while serving four years as varsity coxswain of the TU rowing team.
After a couple of years on campus, she visited TU’s Office of Career Services and attended her first informational meeting on the Teach For America program. She was interested in learning more about the opportunity, and the university had plenty of resources to point her in the right direction.
“I knew I wanted to work in a classroom and make a difference,” Urbanek said. “I didn’t know about Teach for America until Career Services brought it to my attention, but it helped me learn more about the program and get involved.”
Urbanek is preparing for her TU graduation and her future Teach For America assignment in Indiana. With guidance and advisement from the Career Services office, she has signed a two-year contract to teach secondary math in Indianapolis.
“Career services helped me polish my résumé and communicate with Teach For America representatives,” she said. “I really appreciate all of the support as I worked toward my goal of becoming a corps member.”
Urbanek said the office’s willingness to help students succeed is one of the many reasons she will miss Tulsa after graduation. Through the True Blue Neighbors program and other initiatives, she discovered how deeply committed TU is to its students and community.
“The best thing I’ve learned about being at TU is creating relationships and connecting with people,” she said.