The students studying in OU's teacher education program in the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education work very hard to earn their degree so that they can teach the next generation of K12 students. However, before they can walk across the graduation stage and into their very own classroom, they have to pass a series of background checks and certification tests mandated by the state of Oklahoma (or any state in which they choose to teach).
These background checks and certification tests cost money, and right now, students are responsible for paying these costs.
These costs come at the worst possible time - when many of these students have had to give up their jobs in order to devote themselves full-time to their student teaching internship. Certification and background check costs are in addition to their tuition and fees for OU. Around this same time, these students will also be paying graduation related costs (cap and gown) as well as buying professional clothing and supplies for their future classrooms.
Small gifts to cover the costs of certification tests and background checks can make a BIG difference for students as they try to conquer their last hurdle before teaching.