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Morning Sun
  • Rumble in the Jungle attracts HS students

  • The jungle is spreading. Gus Gorilla’s domain is extending far beyond the borders of Kansas.



    At least that’s the way it seemed Saturday for Rumble in the Jungle, an event where high school seniors and their families come to check out what Pittsburg State University has to offer them.

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  • The jungle is spreading. Gus Gorilla’s domain is extending far beyond the borders of Kansas.
    At least that’s the way it seemed Saturday for Rumble in the Jungle, an event where high school seniors and their families come to check out what Pittsburg State University has to offer them.
    “I tell students that they have two big decisions to make,” said Dr. Steve Scott, PSU president. “Are you going to college, and where do you go? I make the case that Pitt State deserves their consideration. An important aspect is that in many ways this is a family decision. This is why we have programing for parents as well as students.”
    Scott was very pleased that the visitors Saturday included eight prospective students from Texas.
    “We’re reaching into Texas with a new policy that offers students  there a 150 percent in-state tuition rate,” he said. “That will be in effect in fall 2013, so these eight students here today will be the first to take advantage of  it.”
    PSU already reaches two counties deep into Missouri, Oklahoma and Arkansas with an offer of in-state tuition rates.
    “We call that the Gorilla Advantage,” Scott said. “This new level of tuition is the Gorilla Edge, and it’s offered to Texas as well as everyplace else in Missouri, Oklahoma and Arkansas.”
    He said that the new policy is part of the university’s growth strategy.
    “Our footprint is getting bigger,” Scott said.
    Among those from Texas were Lex Rewerts and son Carl from Carrollton. Rewerts is a PSU alumnus with a degree in wood technology.
    “I went to the University of Kansas my freshman year and it was just too big for me,” he said. “I came here and just loved it. My sister is a PSU graduate, too.”
    His son, a senior at Hebron High School, said that he grew up hearing stories from his father about how great PSU was.
    Carl Rewerts is interested in history and education courses, but fellow Hebron High School seniors Jonathan Hamilton and Joshua Stone said they were more interested in the wood technology program. Their teacher at the school’s technology center encouraged them to check out PSU.
    Stone, a guitarist, is also thinking about minoring in music or business. He had an opportunity to talk with Dr. Joanne Britz, associate music professor, during the Academic Showcase in the Overman Student Center.
    “The thing a lot of people don’t realize is that you don’t have to be a music major to receive a music scholarship,” Britz told him. “We just care that you play well.”
    The Academic Showcase had informational booths on most PSU subject departments with some items of special interest. At the biology department table, Delia Lister of Nature Reach held a colorful king snake, while members of the PSU Chemistry Club concocted scientific hot chocolate and made ice cream with liquid nitrogen.
    Page 2 of 2 - “That ice cream was good,” Hamilton said.
    Not everybody came from out of state. Brothers Mitchell May, who’s interested in criminal justice, and Allan May, who’s thinking about automotive technology and mechanical engineering, came from Wichita with their mother, Elsie May.
    “My niece and nephew went to Pitt State and did really well, so I thought I’d bring my sons here to see what it was like,” she said.
    “It’s pretty good,” Allan May said.
    They may not have made a decision yet, but Carl Rewerts and his father will be staying over the weekend and talking with PSU admissions on Monday. One factor is the Gorilla Edge.
    “Prices are competitive, and I can send Carl here for no more than I can send him to several schools in Texas,” Rewerts said.
    But money isn’t really the main thing.
    “I fell in love with Pittsburg immediately,” Carl Rewerts said. “When we pulled in here last night, it just felt like the place. I think part of the draw for me is that I’ve always been in a big, big city, and coming to a smaller town like this feels a lot more friendly.”

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