Thirty-four McAlester ninth Grade GEAR UP students recently visited the Atoka Museum and Civil War Cemetery. Students participated in an outdoor walking tour of the Civil War Cemetery, learning about the history of the Civil War in Southeast Oklahoma, including the fact that the cemetery is the only designated Confederate cemetery in Oklahoma. Students also toured the museum, which includes history of Atoka County, such as displays of legendary professional bull rider Lane Frost, country music entertainer Reba McEntire, and Academy Award-winning artist Matthew Mungle, who are originally from the area.
The field trip was sponsored by Eastern Oklahoma State College GEAR UP. Eastern received a $17 million federal GEAR UP grant in 2017, and will serve more than 3,000 students in 39 area schools for seven years.