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Oklahoma Air National Guard Salutes Healthcare Workers




Four F-18 fighter jets fly over Baird Hall. Photo by Jake Brillhart, the Hillpost.

This afternoon, airmen from the 138th Fighter Wing stationed in Tulsa conducted a flyover of several area hospitals.

At approximately 3:28 PM, four fighter jets roared over the blue skies of Claremore. First flying over Claremore Regional Hospital, the squadron then passed Claremore Indian Hospital. Moments later, the four F-18’s came soaring over the RSU Claremore campus.

Coming from the south, the four pilots flew over Baird Hall, Solider Field, and University Village A before returning to their flight plan. After flying over College Hill, they continued towards the Claremore Veteran’s Center.

“I can tell you nothing makes me feel more protected and more at ease than knowing that our stateside military members want to remind us of their presence and that they’re here to help during both natural disasters and to aid during times like these,” said Kiera Parker, a nursing student at RSU.

The flight was part of greater exercise by the Oklahoma Air National Guard recognizing healthcare workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This is our way of showing our gratitude and thanks to all of the doctors, nurses, medical staff and first responders who are selflessly and tirelessly working to keep Oklahoma safe and healthy during this pandemic,” said Maj. Gen. Michael Thompson. Thompson serves as the adjutant general for the State of Oklahoma and coordinates the operations of the Oklahoma National Guard.

In a statement, Thompson recognized the continuing contributions of healthcare workers in Oklahoma. “Thank you for your service to the people of our great state, and for showing how strong Oklahoma can be when we are all working together,” said Thompson.

After their flight over Claremore, the four airmen of the 138th Fighter Wing completed one more flyover of James O. Goodwin Health Center in Tulsa. The James O. Goodwin Health Center houses the Tulsa Health Department.

Jake Brillhart serves as the editor-in-chief for the Hillpost. He is a junior studying public affairs with a focus in media communications. He frequently covers stories related to state and local government and campus policy. After graduation, Brillhart plans to pursue a Master of Public Administration and begin a career in higher education.

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Campus Life

RSU Student Reportedly Tests Positive for COVID-19




A novel coronavirus, named Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), was identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness first detected in Wuhan, China in 2019. The illness caused by this virus has been named coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Photo courtesy of the Centers of Disease Control.

Two RSU students have undergone testing for COVID-19. According to a social media post made on Friday, an RSU student claims to have had a positive test result. The student told the Hill News they have both been self-isolating since a COVID-19 test last week.

RSU began its response to the coronavirus earlier this year in March. This included a transition to remote instruction for the latter half of the spring semester. Beginning on May 29, 2002, RSU started to ease pandemic-related campus restrictions.

For the summer semester, RSU continued with remote instruction and has limited campus events.

In a statement, RSU Director of Communications and Marketing Brandon Irby stated: “Rogers State University follows the guidance of national and local health officials in response to a positive diagnosis on campus. When an RSU employee or student self-reports they are symptomatic or tests positive for COVID-19, there are important measures that will be promptly taken including quarantine or isolation, contact tracing and facility disinfection.

To date, RSU has not announced any positive COVID-19 tests on its campuses in Bartlesville, Claremore, or Pryor, OK.

RSU students, faculty, and staff with symptoms or suspected contact can receive a COVID-19 test by appointment at the Rogers County, Mayes County, or Washington County Health Departments.

Editor’s note: this story was update at 8:30 PM to correct a typo.

This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.

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Campus Life

RSU College Republicans Attend “Keep America Great” Rally in Tulsa




The BOK Center hosted the 6,000 person rally sponsored by President Donald Trump's reelection campaign. Photo by Jake Brillhart, the Hill News.

Several members of RSU’s College Republicans and their families attended Saturday’s campaign rally for President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign. The event marks the beginning of President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign visits. Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt attributed the selection of Oklahoma as the site for the first rally due to the state’s early reopening plans.

“With a little bit more action taking place closer to Trump’s appearance, things are starting to get pretty amped up,” said Braiden Lanser, an RSU student. Lanser attended the rally with his brother and father.

“We’re super excited! It’s a new experience for all of us so we don’t really know what to expect, but haven’t been disappointed yet,” said Lanser.

The “Keep America Great” rally was hosted the BOK Center in Tulsa, OK. Third street in downtown Tulsa remained largely blocked off for the event. Photo by Jake Brillhart, the Hill News.

Hana Yu, an RSU student, volunteered at the rally. “I wanted to show support to a president that is working to bring back the country that I became a citizen in,” said Yu. “It was also a honor to be able to be in the same room as the president and vice president.”

In a statement, the Oklahoma Federation of College Republicans commented on the participation of their local chapters. “We are honored to have had the president kick off his campaign in Oklahoma. Oklahoma was the right choice as we have been successfully open for over 50 days. Our College Republicans are mobilized to take back our 5th district and bring a Trump landslide in the state,” said OKFCR Chairman Mack Savala.

The RSU chapter of College Republicans is a member of the Oklahoma Federation of College Republicans which is affiliated with the National College Republicans Committee. The national College Republicans movement supports the Republican Party, its candidates, and hosts activities for its members on college campuses. According to the National College Republicans Committee’s website, there are over 1,800 active chapters on college campuses with over 250,000 members nationwide.

Students interested in joining RSU College Republicans can visit their Facebook page or Instagram profile for more information.

Editor’s note: this article was updated at 5:03 PM to correct an inaccurate date in the first paragraph.

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Planting Roots: RSU Alumni Association Attends County Farmers Market




Hunter the Hillcat poses with Rogers County Farmers Market customers. Photo courtesy of Travis Peck, RSU.

Earlier today, the RSU Alumni Association attended the Rogers County Farmers Market. Along with Hunter the Hillcat, the RSU Alumni Association promoted the university to the larger Green Country community.

“We have a wonderful resource right here in our own backyard and it needs to shine,” said RSU Director of Alumni Engagement Travis Peck. He outlined importance of having a university in a community and the impact it can have.

“The Rogers County Farmers Market was excited to have the RSU Alumni pop-up event at the market this week,” said Reighly Hendrix, Rogers County Farmers Market director. “We enjoyed seeing our customers wearing their RSU gear and snapped some great pictures with Hunter the Hillcat!”

Along with 23 other vendors, Peck and RSU Alumni Association President Jody Reiss represented RSU to approximately 675 customers at the farmers market today. Reiss commented on the success of the event and the alumni association’s participation. “I think it went awesome,” said Reiss, “I love seeing local community connecting with RSU!”

For Peck, the excitement was mutual. “We were excited to see so much navy and red. The more events Roger State University can be a part of in and around the city of Claremore the better,” said Peck. He commented on the success of this initial alumni pop-up event.

“We hope to participate in food truck Thursdays this season and expand our impact on the city,” explained Peck.

The RSU Alumni Association is open to all graduates of RSU, Rogers State College, and Claremore Junior College. Alumni can join the association by visiting According to RSU’s website, the next, major alumni event is Alumni Weekend on the Hill on September 18-19, 2020.

The Rogers County Farmers Market operates every Saturday from 7-11 a.m. from May through October. It includes vendors selling fresh produce, baked goods, and locally-produced apparel and gifts.

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