OTC Foundation

Statistics show that solid, higher paying jobs in the United States tend to require some kind of certification or degree — and also that rural students face some unique disadvantages. With that in mind, Ozarks Technical Community College is using grant money help rural high school students plan for life after graduation.

Four new academic advisors have been embedded in high schools in Branson, Forsyth, Hollister, and Reeds Spring as part of the project, which received grant funding from the rootEd Alliance.

Courtesy of Dr. Tiffany Brunner

This week on Making Democracy Work, host Debbie Good speaks with Dr. Tiffany Brunner, director of Middle College at Ozarks Technical Community College (OTC).

Today’s discussion explores the evolution of this program from 2008 to present day.  The initial goal was to reduce the high level of dropout rates in area high schools.  Today,  the goal has grown to also provide college and career opportunities to a variety of juniors and seniors. 

An articulation agreement signed Thursday will allow students to seamlessly transfer from Ozarks Technical Community College into Southwest Baptist University’s bachelor degree programs.

OTC Chancellor Dr. Hal Higdon said the agreement will ensure that students’ credits will transfer.  The agreement impacts students pursuing an Associate of Arts at OTC.  That’s a degree designed for students who plan to pursue education beyond the associate degree level.  

OTC offers Associate of Arts programs in seven subjects, including:


A new Ozarks Technical Community College education center in Republic is set to open in August 2020, and construction is now underway.  Ground has been broken for the 30,000-square-foot facility being built on 7.69-acres on the city’s west side.  The land was donated to OTC by the Bussey, Cox and Lipscomb families.

The project is possible due to the approval of tax levies last April, according to OTC Chancellor Hal Higdon.


A new space at Ozarks Technical Community College will prepare students to work in the trucking and manufacturing industries.  OTC held a grand opening for the 12,500-square-foot MHC Diesel Technician Training Center Monday morning.  It’s an addition to the college’s original diesel training facility in the Industry and Transportation Technology Center.

Students in the program can earn either a one-year certificate or a two-year associate degree.  Currently, around 35 students graduate from the program each year, and OTC officials hope to double that number with the new space.