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Published 03/02/2023


Langston University Office of Public Relations

DENVER – CoBank and Langston University today announced a multi-year pilot program that will introduce Langston students to CoBank and the Farm Credit System and create connections for students pursuing career opportunities in banking and financial services.

CoBank has committed $500,000 to support the effort, which will launch later this year. Dubbed the “Langston University CoBank Scholars,” the joint initiative will create a multi-faceted approach to education and engagement. The program will include scholarships, coaching and mentoring, an onsite immersion experience at CoBank’s Colorado headquarters, and internship opportunities for Langston University students.

Founded in 1897, Langston University is one of approximately 100 Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in the United States. Its main campus is located outside of Guthrie, Oklahoma with campuses in Oklahoma City and Tulsa. With an enrollment of approximately 1,900 students, Langston offers degrees in agriculture and applied sciences, business, education, health care and other disciplines.

“CoBank is delighted to partner with Langston University in this exciting initiative,” said Tom Halverson, CoBank’s president and chief executive officer. “This significant investment, unanimously approved by our board of directors, supports the commitment of the Farm Credit System’s to the nation’s HBCUs and is a tangible demonstration of CoBank’s core value of diversity, equity and inclusion.”

“Like many employers, CoBank strives to hire the best and most qualified talent,” said Faye Tate, vice president of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at CoBank. “To achieve that goal, we need to reach the broadest possible pool of candidates, including those from diverse communities. We know that HBCUs are a tremendous source of talent, but many HBCU students simply are not aware of the vast range of rewarding career opportunities offered by CoBank and the Farm Credit System. Our hope is that our partnership with Langston University will help us to change that.”

“We are incredibly proud to partner with CoBank,” said Dr. Kent J. Smith, Jr., president of Langston University. “The opportunities available to our students through this partnership will prepare them for a variety of career paths and enhance their overall development as young professionals. We are grateful to CoBank for their support of our students.”

“We are so excited about the opportunities our partnership with CoBank will bring to Langston University students,” said Theresa Powell, vice president for Operations at Langston. “As an agricultural and mechanical college situated in a rural setting, we share many values including a focus on transforming small communities and supporting the rural economy. We believe that we are poised to build an excellent program wherein CoBank will bring expertise directly to our students in Langston and beyond, leading our graduates to demonstrate those shared values of collaborative community development as professionals.”

About CoBank

CoBank is a cooperative bank serving vital industries across rural America. The bank provides loans, leases, export financing and other financial services to agribusinesses and rural power, water and communications providers in all 50 states. The bank also provides wholesale loans and other financial services to affiliated Farm Credit associations serving more than 76,000 farmers, ranchers and other rural borrowers in 23 states around the country. CoBank is a member of the Farm Credit System, a nationwide network of banks and retail lending associations chartered to support the borrowing needs of U.S. agriculture, rural infrastructure and rural communities. Headquartered outside Denver, Colorado, CoBank serves customers from regional banking centers across the U.S. and also maintains an international representative office in Singapore.

About Langston University

Langston University (LU) was established prior to statehood. LU was founded in 1897 as a land grant institution, it is the only Historically Black College/ University (HBCU) in the state of Oklahoma. LU has both a rural and urban mandated mission with campuses in Langston, Oklahoma City, Tulsa, and one extension in Ardmore. Langston University produces top academic scholars within the six schools house the degree programs: Agriculture and Applied Sciences, Arts and Sciences, Business, Education and Behavioral Science, Nursing and Health Professions, and Physical Therapy. More than 30 undergraduate and 5 graduate degree programs are offered, including a professional doctoral degree. Top majors include agriculture, nursing, health physical education and recreation, liberal education, and psychology.

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